Christians face many challenges in life and the greatest one is deception. Lots of people think they are Christians, yet their personalities and their lifestyles don’t reflect it. Are they Christians or is it possible that deception has made them Wannabee Christians?
One of the concerns that people have about Christianity is that they’ll have to give up all the good things in life; no more smoking, no more drinking, no more going to bars, no more indulging in unfavorable substances and no more hanging out with old friends. They look at Christianity as a religious organization that comes with a bunch of rules and turns people into unpersonable zombies. This is far from the truth because when you become a Christian you don’t have to give up anything.
When you become a Christian, you choose to give up everything.
There’s a big difference between someone who “wants” to become a Christian and someone who gives his or her heart to Jesus and “becomes” a Christian. The perception is comparable to a diet. Many people yo-yo on various dieting fads to lose weight, but they never succeed and in fact, often suffer poor health effects because of it. They’ll see all the benefits and read all the testimonies of celebrities who engaged in specific diets and now look awesome, and so they’ll go on the diet, too. But they’ll fail.
Why will they fail? Because their eyes are on the end result, but their heart and mind have nothing stable to hold on to. In other words, they are not committed to the diet or to the reason for the diet; they are not committed to good health; they are not committed to change – they just want to look good and so they follow the regime on their own energy and for their own glory.
It’s the same concept for Christianity. Without a commitment, you will not succeed. Unless you are committed to Jesus and to His ministry and to His calling on your life, you will never know what Christianity is all about. You will always remain a wannabee Christian with no goal, no purpose, no hope for the future, and nothing solid in your life to guide you.
Wannabee Christians want to appear to be Christians, want to reap all the benefits of being Christians and want to hold the status and impression of good Christian citizens, but they don’t want to deny their own existence. They don’t want to change who they are and more than that, they do NOT want to give up the pleasures in life that they enjoy.
However, when you are committed to God your heart changes and your priorities shift from being self-pleasers to being Christ-pleasers. Your focus and your goals, and your hopes and your joys in life become entwined with those of Jesus. You no longer struggle to give up old habits because you “want” to give them up; you no longer fight the change, but rather, you willfully submit to God’s ways. You slowly take on the lifestyle and passions of Jesus.
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.” … Galatians 5:1
The Bible tells us in Galatians 5:22 that Christians are known by their fruits and these are “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.” These fruits are the personality and characteristics of Jesus, so the more you become like Jesus, the more of His fruits you will have and the more of His personality will live in you.
After a while you’ll realize that you are different. The things that you used to enjoy doing and places you thought were socially exciting become distasteful things of the past and you have no desire to do them anymore. You have new interests, new joys and new hope. Your outlook on life changes and you begin to see things through Jesus’ eyes.
“Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass.” … Psalm 37:5
Will every conversion be a simple transformation once you’re a Christian? Not always. People who once engaged in addictive substances, for example, will often have a physical battle to fight because their bodies crave the substance it’s used to.
“The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” … Matthew 26:41.
This requires diligently seeking Jesus to remove this craving and to heal the body. Some people will get the healing and others will need to go to a naturopathic doctor for natural meds to help them overcome it. But when you are committed and when you trust Jesus to give you the victory over it, you WILL defeat this goliath and you WILL enjoy the freedom of life without its evil clutches.
After a while you’ll look into the mirror and see that you really are different. You are not the person you used to be. As you study and grow in the knowledge of Jesus Christ, and as you commit your life to Him, you’ll progressively take on His personality and His passions. Your thoughts and your ideals will become more like His as His Spirit becomes life in you.
“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.” … Galatians 5:16-17