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Popping the Christian Bubble

By Leah Adams

 

 popping

So it is with you. Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air. 1 Corinthians 14:9

 

The Lord has been teaching me a very important lesson in the past few months. I grew up in church. My earliest memories are of church...the nursery, Vacation Bible School, Sunday school, people being baptized, mission organizations and activities, sitting in ‘big’ church and thinking that the preacher would never finish, singing in the youth choir, hearing the stories of Noah and Moses and David and Paul. I understood what it meant to be ‘saved’ and ‘baptized’. The reasons for the rainbow and the Lord’s Supper and so many other Christian traditions were ingrained in me since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. I have lived in a Christian Bubble for the entirety of my life.

 

Perhaps the same is true of you. But, maybe not. Which brings me to the lesson the Lord has been teaching me. I have a new friend who grew up in a denomination where the members are never encouraged to read the Bible. They are not taught the lovely Bible stories that I learned as a child. They are not encouraged to have a personal relationship with Jesus. They have no idea who or what the Holy Spirit is. Please know that I am not belittling that denomination in any way. It just is what it is.

 

My friend joined my Tuesday morning Bible study group, and unwittingly, we have baptized her with fire. She bought herself her very first Bible a month or so before joining our group. She has been through 1 and 2 Thessalonians with Beth Moore and our group. She is studying the topic of Covenant with us now, guided by Kay Arthur. Next fall, we will be in Hebrews. Friends, if that isn’t a baptism by fire, I don’t know what is.

 

She is like a sponge, soaking in the Word. Our group has been incredibly blessed by her presence and her questions. She is so hungry for Jesus that she doesn’t mind asking questions. A rare gift, indeed, in anyone over the age of 12. She has learned the significance of the rainbow and the promise of God that it signifies. We talked about the Lord’s Supper, and how that is another term for Communion. We have encouraged her that God is speaking to her heart, even though she may not identify it as Him. Her child-likeness and hunger for Jesus is a thing of beauty to behold.

 

My friend has reminded me that not everyone grows up in a Christian bubble. Here are 5 things that those of us who grew up in the Christian church need to remember:  

 

1. Not everyone grew up in a Christian, or even a churchy, atmosphere. Even for those who went to church sporadically, Christian traditions and terms may not make sense to them.


2. Consider your words when speaking to new Christians or non-believers.  They may not understand your Christian-speak. Take the time to explain Christian concepts and traditions. Please do not assume that everyone around you understands the things of the Christian faith.

3. Be patient with new Christians or non-believers. They do not need you to be frustrated with them, or criticize them for not understanding. They need gentleness, patience, and love. When my friend commented on how she had never felt condemned for all she did not know, I told her that she is like a baby. We would never expect an infant to immediately know how to cook a meal, work at a job, or wash clothing. They have to grow and learn and be taught. So it is with baby Christians. Those of us who are older, mature Christians must teach new Christians how to grow up in the faith. It is our responsibility, people.


4. Ask God to give you wisdom as you come in contact with those who did not grow up in a Christian bubble. Just like my friend, there are people out there who are hungry for Jesus. All it takes is a Christ-follower being available to be used by Jesus in the life of a new believer.

 

5. Make certain new Christians have a Bible that is an understandable translation, and easy to use. This may be one of the greatest gifts you can give another person. God’s Word is powerful and able to change their heart. If possible, make sure it is a study Bible that helps explain what they are reading.

 

leah

 

It has been such a pleasure to be part of mentoring my friend. I hope each of you has that opportunity as you walk with Jesus.


This devotional was first published on LeahAdams.org
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About the Author 

Saved at the age of 15, Leah Adams walked away from God in her twenties. After much heartbreak, and a heaping helping of gentle correction from God, Leah returned to Him in her thirties with a heart set on following hard after Jesus. Her passion is speaking and writing the truth of Scripture in a way that makes the Bible relevant to daily life. 

 

Leah holds a Doctor of Pharmacy degree, and is a graduate of CLASS speaker training. She has published two Bible studies (From the Trash Pile to the Treasure Chest: Creating a Godly Legacy, and HeBrews: A Better Blend), as well as a devotion book entitled When Words Won’t Come. Leah is called ‘Mom’ by two young adults, and she lives in northern Georgia with her husband, who is also her dentist.  She can be found at LeahAdams.org, Twitter , and Facebook

 

 

A Word From James

 

Great words from our sister regarding the calling and privilege of cross cultural ministry. I hear two invitations in this devotional. One, I need to go out of my way to find and befriend people who haven't been exposed to the Light. And two I must be ready to communicate with my friend in a way that is effective. Jesus is always moving toward lost and hurting people. Let's join him today!

 

 

 

 

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