[anzac] ABOUT "CASUAL" CHRISTIANS - Darren Smith

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From: "REVIVAL List" <prophetic@...>
Date: Sat, 21 Nov 2009 01:37:25 +1300
NOTE:  Darren Smith will be preaching along with Andrew Strom
during many of his Southern USA meetings coming up in January.
(Details later). Darren is the founder of Streetscape Ministries, an
awesome ministry to the homeless seeing miracles on the streets
in Galveston, Texas.

-by Darren Smith.

Is there any such thing as a casual Christian?  I have heard this
term a lot in recent times and to tell you the truth it makes me sick. 
But, as I have thought about this subject and spent time looking
around at the body as a whole, I venture to say for the most part
it is true of most of the church today.  Before you get angry and
stop reading, please hear me out. How many believers do you
know that are really sold out for Christ?  When I say this I mean
that Christ is the central focus of their life.  I mean a person that
has died to self and relies on Christ for his substance, willing to
sacrifice even to the point of their well being, to serve the Lord.  

For a long time we have heard sermon after sermon on giving 10%
to the church and yet from the modern church accounts, only 30%
of the people give 10%.  This is sad but considering that most of
that doesn't go to do the work of the ministry, its not suprising. I'm
not teaching on the tithe system, I'm using this as an example on
the casusal attitude of believers.  But I want to take it much deeper
than this and ask some very hard questions.   How much of your
time do you give to the Lord?  Do you spend more time on you
than you do the Lord?  More on entertainment or hobbies than
service to the Lord?  

Many times people tell us that we would love to come and help you
guys in the street but we are just so busy we simply can not find
the time.  I wonder if they ever stop to think that we have to sacrifice
and make time ourselves.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining,
the Lord blesses us and I wouldn't be anywhere else, but it requires
sacrifice for us to be here as well.  I want you to see that if you are
willing to serve, God will bless you.  We have people all the time
say, "I have never seen God's power and grace like this in my life." 
Many of these guys have been in church all their life and have never
ministered to anyone.  

Another response we get is, "I'm not called to do that type of ministry."  
Oh, really?  I believe we are all called to take the Gospel to the
world, to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and to take care of
the widows and orphans.  To be able to put off these things places
you in the casual realm. Many will go to church once a week and
then go right out and serve themselves all week without doing
anything for the Lord.  Trust me, "I didn't have time" will not help
them when they stand before the Lord.  

What makes this so sad is that many of them will never hear a
message on repentence and total commitment to the Lord because
this type message is not popular in the modern church.  It doesn't
fill the offering plate or the seats.  Instead we hear funny stories
and jokes from the pulpit as well as humanistic teaching on self-
help and prosperity.  This system has created the casual Christian
which is no Christian at all.  So many have been converted to a
false religion of self and greed and what is worse, they think they
are fine because everyone they know is a casual Christian as well. 

When they come in contact with a sold out believer, it makes them
uncomfortable.  When they hear a repentence message they label
it extreme and harsh. These same casual Christians see the world
going to hell around them and are not affected at all.  The thought
of sacrifice is foreign to them.  Material wealth is equated with
blessings from the Lord - after all, many pulpits teach this for self
enrichment - so in their mind it's OK.
The reason I write this is for an awakening.  We all must look into
our heart and see if we are sold out to the Lord.  We all have areas
we can improve and should!  We must get this type of word out
and the body must mobilize for the battle.  We all will have to
sacrifice, but we were not put here to live our best life now - our
best life is yet to come when the Lord returns.  I know this is very
convicting, but it must be said.  We must repent and give our whole
life to the Lord and that means everything, all of us, everything we
are and all we could ever become - we must give it all to the Lord.  

So I ask you again, is there any such thing as a casual Christian,
or maybe more important, are you a casual Christian?  

-Darren Smith