What comes to mind when you hear the word resistance? In light of today’s culture and the current events unfolding before our eyes, this word may stir up emotions like fear, defensiveness, or justification. But what does it really mean?
Resistance: the refusal to accept or comply with something. The attempt to prevent something by action or argument.
Is there a time to resist the cultural norms? Is it Christian to push back on trends that are destructive to the fabric of society? And if so, what should that look like?
Recently on Susie Larson Live, I spoke with author and pastor Jon Tyson. Twenty years ago, he felt the call to leave his home in Adelaide, Australia, and move to the United States with a passion for seeking and cultivating the renewal of the Western Church. I’m so grateful God is sending missionaries to our nation. We need them.
Jon talked about how drastically things have changed in our country over the past twenty years. He spoke of how powerfully the culture has influenced the church, and not in a good way. Jon suggests that if we’re not personally transformed by Christ Jesus, we will be discipled by the culture around us. He cast a vision for what might be possible if we formed a resistance that actually transformed us first and then brought renewal to the world.
Can you imagine it?
In his book, “Beautiful Resistance: The Joy of Conviction in a Culture of Compromise”, Jon offers eight ways to resist the impact of today’s culture that we might actually restore it to health, wholeness, and Christlikeness just by being in it.
- Worship must resist idolatry
- Rest Must Resist Exhaustion
- Hunger Must Resist Apathy
- Hospitality Must Resist Fear
- Honor Must Resist Contempt
- Love Must Resist Hate
- Sacrifice Must Resist Privilege
- Celebration Must Resist Cynicism
This global pandemic, this civil unrest, is an incredible opportunity for us to shine brightly. Before these crises, the Western church was losing its influence at record speed. God has given us a chance to begin again. God is calling us to resist our fears, our prejudices, our love of comfort and ease, and our comfortable Christianity. We can be part of the resistance by starting with our own hearts. God calls us to deeper intimacy, more time in His Word, profound personal transformation, that we might go out into all the world and reflect God’s beautiful heart to a lost and dying world.Humble resistance