Trendy Christianity

The Bible has no disclaimer saying “this might offend you, read with caution.” Similarly, this post will have no disclaimer at the end telling you that what you read is “to each his own.”

Let me tell you something, Christian to Christian, believer to believer. Maybe you are not a believer, but you have noticed this trend with your Christian friends. Here it is: WE (Christians) ARE MIRRORING THE WORLD.

What? Let me explain.

In trying to be inclusive and loving to everyone, which in itself is a good thing, we are becoming no different than the world around us, except for the big fat Christian label we place on ourselves. This is dangerous.

With that being said…listen. The church is not for us. It is not a sanctuary for ourselves. The church’s purpose is to glorify the Most High, the Father of the Universe, the Creator of life. Its purpose is to learn about Him, to honor Him through our fellowship, to love in the name of Christ.

Hip music. Concerts. All black. MacBooks. Densely highlighted bibles. Big churches. Blogs. Coffee shops. Enos. Perfect Instagram’s. Bible apps. Cool shoes. Hebrew tattoos. Journals with pages and pages of calligraphy.

If you took all of it away, would you still be in love with Christ?

This has become a new and hazardous comfort zone for so many Christians (and non-Christians). Christianity now has a concrete “look.” We know what to do. We know what songs to sing. We know the cool bloggers and the trendy speakers. We know what to wear.

A couple of days ago, I attended the Passion Conference in Atlanta. A woman who I respect immensely, Beth Moore, came and spoke some powerful words. I was deeply convicted about something God had placed on my heart for months now. She alluded to this…

We, millennial Christians, are sacrificing the truth of the Christian faith for “love’s sake.”

The TRUTH that we are abandoning is this: we are no longer foreigners in this land. We blend in. We make following Christ easy, lukewarm, concrete, hip, and fun.

Let me tell you this. We are called to be foreigners, outsiders, temporary residents.

1 Peter 1:1 calls us EXILES.

1 Peter 1:17 calls us FOREIGNERS.

1 Peter 2:11 calls us SOJOURNERS.

I do not know about you, but I am tired of living “trendy.” I can never keep up. It is exhausting. It is like high school all over again. I want to live by the Holy Spirit, the Holy Book, my convictions, through worship and praise. What an adventure!

What I am NOT saying is this: coffee shop fellowship and intense Christian jam sessions are bad.

What I AM saying is this: when our lives no longer reflect the cross, when our lives are comfortable, when we no longer hurt, when worship becomes something to put on Instagram, when we value ourselves and our image more than Christ, when shortcuts in our Christianity become the norm, when we no longer reflect on our own sin, when we gain a taste for inclusiveness but lose a taste for God, when are motifs are self-righteous… that is when it all becomes blasphemy.

Yes, world, use social media and artwork for the glory of God. Use instruments and fill arenas with people to glorify God. PRAISE GOD FOR THAT. But also let us die to self. Empty ourselves of our own ambitions. Suffer for Jesus. Bear disorder. Become comfortable being uncomfortable. Lose our pride.

Let us Christians become like Christ in His death.

 

86 thoughts on “Trendy Christianity

  1. I understand the point you are trying to make with your article, but there is a breakdown in the way it is communicated.

    The way it reads, it sounds like you’re mad because you’ve tried to be ‘cool’, and failed. It also makes a rough transition from material things to watering down the gospel, making it sound like the path to lukewarm Christianity is only walked by people wearing skinny jeans. Lastly, in a day in age where people who are my age rarely stop their lives to read the Word of God, you call them on the carpet for highlighting in their Bibles and reading through an app?

    Like I said, I understand the point you are trying to make. I’m fully aware of what is ‘trendy’ in Christianity right now. And I agree, some of it is ridiculous. However, I think this article is stuck in a spot that is surface level at best.

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    1. I am sorry that you feel this is surface level. These are things that I have been convicted of and I believe they go deeper than surface level. I do not believe the way someone looks or what they do has anything to do with their walk with Christ. The point I am making is this: to search ourselves internally and make sure we are not using these things popularized by Christians to distract us or make us “cooler” in our Christian communities​, but to love Christ and love other better.

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  2. That truth will preach just fine, Girl!!!! And as God says, “if you hold onto my teaching, you really are my disciples. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31-33). Isn’t that what our hearts long for–to be free in Christ Jesus, living abundant lives with reckless abandon for HIS glory???? 🙌 Keep on shining the light, Faith, and keep being a voice in your generation! Proud of you and love you, Girl! 💗

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    1. You have such an excellent blog site! After reading a few of your posts, I can tell I’m in a similar boat as to struggles and seasons of life I have gone through as well, and it’s very encouraging and uplifting to know that as Christians in their 20s, we aren’t alone when we go through these different chapters of our life! From one blogger to another, I just want to let you know that you’re doing an amazing job with this passion God has clearly given you 🙂

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    1. I don’t think she meant the hurt that brought you to Christ. When we hurt for others or for the world. When we mourn for those who will not believe. We do get in our comfort zones and lose that desperation for Him and to heal the spirituality dead, we don’t grow or grow the Kingdom.

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      1. Oh! Well in that case, of course! You are correct. When we become numb for the need for the gospel, we lose our love for Him.

        However I’d argue that means we must remain in the world in order to feel the hurt for the lost! When we remain in the church all the time and go from “holy huddle to holy huddle” we lose our love for the lost. On the flip side, if we completely remove ourselves from the church we can lose our love for Jesus.

        So, yes! If it’s that kind of hurting then yes, if we grow comfortable we lose that realization of the need to spread His Holy Name.

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    2. As believers we are called to a life of suffering through the process of sanctification. Is there joy? Absolutely! However, every day should reflect the battle for our souls as we die to ourselves in order to grow and become more like Christ. There is also the natural hurt of being a stranger in a strange land. Because we’re Christians, we don’t fit in, and sometimes it’s painful to realize that we should not live selfish lives like the ungodly. This doesn’t only apply to sinful activities, but the selfishness of living for our own comfort and glory. Jesus himself was a “man of sorrow” and “had no place to lay his head”. He also experienced a life of wonder and joy while his ministry led him directly to the cross. I hope that’s a helpful perspective for you to consider 🙂

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  3. Where do you draw the line? At what point do you say we’re mirroring the world? I mean I don’t think there’s a way to know. I think it’s a matter of our heart…some of the things you mentioned I’ve felt conviction about and changed, but some of them I haven’t. I don’t think there’s any way you can know. That’s why these articles are don’t help. You’re spending time trying to correct christians…why don’t we all just talk about Jesus as much as possible and encourage and pray and maybe some of those things you mention will start to go away within the church.

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  4. Reblogged this on Moments and commented:
    Oh preach! This is something I’ve been feeling for a long time, & this fellow Jesus lover put it into words perfectly! THANK YOU! I’m going to follow up with my own thoughts soon, but for now here’s this.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I have been alarmed by this trend for a long time. Having the cool tattoos, motorcycles, hipsters outfit complete with hat and scarves and ironic lingo….too much emphasis on exterior life, not interior. God calls us to be in the world, not of the world.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. The “Macbook” part baffles me. Not a knock on the Mac (though I prefer Windows), there seems to be a lot of peer pressure to go Mac in the churches.

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  7. I don’t care if you’ve got a tattoo or trendy or not. If you’re not loving to people around you and all you care about is your circle of friends and you can’t see past the end of your nose to befriend other Christians (or non), then you’re not living for Christ. I don’t have a problem with social media in regards to it being a useful tool for a wide range of things, however social media usually encompasses and promotes snobbishness – looking/acting better than anyone else – not being supportive of people who need support and encouragement. Social media actually stimulates the opposite when you try to be supportive of someone on their social media but they just ignore you and act like you don’t exist and you get no response – this is what I can’t stand about most Christians these days. People don’t know how to just be themselves anymore, they don’t know how to love others around them face to face. Everyone is so segregated and no one takes the time to care.

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  8. “The TRUTH that we are abandoning is this: we are no longer foreigners in this land. We blend in. We make following Christ easy, lukewarm, concrete, hip, and fun.” I like this a lot. These words are good and true; 30 minutes ago I was speaking with my good friend about this and reading this really confirmed what God has convicted me of: being a trendy Christian. But not the kind of trendy Christian that this blog post is talking about. Here is the truth- it’s okay to blog, to own a MacBook, to have artsy journals, to love trendy things- as it is an expression of who we are and who God created us to be. I love to create so believe me, my journals are littered with watercolor stains and quotes that I adore in pretty handwriting. If posting an artsy picture on Instagram makes me less of a Christian, then I’m in deep sin (I realize that she didn’t say that these things make us sinners, just making a point.) I believe that it is not the trends that are the problem, rather the actions and the image we are portraying. I can follow blogs (this is a blog after all) and still be set apart, but if the blogs I follow are unpleasing to God, then the issue of being a worldly person arises. If my mouth speaks unclean words, then I’m being a trendy Christian. If I go to secular concerts, then I’m being a trendy Christian. If I write gossip in my journals, then I’m being a trendy Christian. If I watch shows that contain sex and nudity int them, then I’m being a trendy Christian. I promise you, I am ashamed to admit that I have done all of those things, which is what had m convicted not too long ago. My relationship with God is not affected by the ‘trendy christian’ in this article, rather the failure for me personally to adhere to how he calls me to live, which would make me a hypocrite (and that is much more concerning to me than owning a MacBook). I don’t mean to offend you at all; in fact I think this article is great because we Christian’s do need to step out of this hypocritic lifestyle and start living out what we believe. The image that we portray is so important to spreading God’s word. So rather than attempting to change your aesthetic, change your heart.

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  9. You definitely make some valid points. Very well written, I love your insight when it comes to enjoying all of these things but if we took them away would we still be in love with Christ? I think this is a creative way to look at it all! Thank you for writing this 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  10. This post is shallow and lacks thoughtfulness. YOU are looking at the surface. Have you ever reached out to someone who’s demonstrating these “trends” you’re talking about? If you have, you’d realize there is more there than what YOU see on the surface. There is a real person there who is just trying to find their way or keep moving in the right direction. This is just a judgemental piece written by someone who thinks others are practicing their faith wrong. Concern yourself with your own faith and relationship with Jesus and try actually reaching out to those who practice their faith slightly different from you. Show respect to your fellow brothers and sisters in Christ instead of calling them fakers. Let God be the judge of their genuineness.

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    1. Hey. I am sorry for the confusion. I am in no way judging others and that was not the intent. My intent and conviction lies in the area of a good “heart check.” By no means do I look at people and judge their Christianity based on the way they look or do things. That is not my place. This is simply a guide for us to have an interal ​observation of ourselves to make sure we are using these things to grow closer to the Lord and not just for popularity.

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  11. I agree that Christianity that bases itself on trends is problematic and that there’s a large part of Christian culture in America that has a problem with this. But I disagree that this is what Christianity has become synonymous with, even with millennials. Many of us are leaving this in droves for traditional forms of Christianity that have never fallen prey to this. Because we want more…more than moralism and more than trends. We want transcendent and beautiful truth. My advice is to pay attention to this movement toward the ancient faith and ask what it’s offering that we have left behind. (Hint: it’s not a mere aesthetic or stylistic difference. It’s in the substance, penetrating the very way faith itself is approached beyond church services. And for those curious, find a Taize service near you. It’s a great introduction to a deeper way of living the faith.)

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  12. I don’t think that having coffee, an upbeat band, etc, is bad. We no longer wash feet at the door, wear veils in church, dance (early worshippers did dance), play the same instruments the first churches did, etc. Churches do need to adapt to the culture, PROVIDED the Word of God is taught, doctrine is sound. But I do know many of those types of churches have lost the message of salvation with all of the love, love, love, forgetting that we are sinners saved by grace.

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    1. I think the love and inclusiveness in modern churches are some of the only reasons people see the bible as something they feel attached too. Without that, there would be lacking a sense of warmth and inviting feeling. Most people don’t like being told they’re worthless without a savior. Even though the worthlessness of oneself is a fundamental part of the Christian faith. Nowadays, the progressive fads talked about in this blog are real facades, but it brings people back into the faith. I agree that the church needs to go back to its roots of what the fundamentals are so people can see what it really is about. The fundamentals are quite disgraceful once one really looks at it word for word without changing it’s context.

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  13. Melissa, I assume that you meant jw.org and not jw.com. As for the truth you’re referring to, it is ONLY found in the holy Bible, not the watchtower or the book of Mormon. The Bible stands on its own as perfect Truth.

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  14. Reblogged this on Enter Wonderland and commented:
    Powerful reminder as we start the new year – are we changing ourselves to better model Christ or to model Christians?

    “Live the cross, it ain’t a chain or design ’cause sin is wack,
    Don’t wear one on your chest if you don’t bear one on your back.”
    -Pick It Up, Andy Mineo

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Yes, yes, yes. This is amazing. I’ve felt so lonely in these past couple months in college trying to find people that are after more than this “trendy” Christianity.

    Let’s deny ourselves, and become like Him in life, in pain, and in death.

    Thank you for this very vital reminder, sister!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Wow, this is so good, girl! I am a fellow blogger and love reading blogs by other believers who are not afraid to speak the Truth. We can’t be ashamed in these last days. I love this. I would love it if you check out my blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Hi Faith…Thanks for standing up and speaking unadulterated truth with no apology. Your generation is not the first generation of Christians to have a certain “look” or expected behaviours that have nothing to do with the Gospel. But your generation has pressures and challenges like none of us older (not old, just older!) folks ever had to experience. But take heart! The darker the darkness, the brighter the light. May you all (ya’ll) millenials have the courage to stand for truth, the wisdom to know truth, the grace to stand strong but still love powerfully and the voice to speak truth to a hurting and dying world. You are a great model of these things, Faith. May God bless you.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. I greatly appreciate this article; however, I’m confused as to why you listed densely highlighted Bibles, Bible apps and journals (that I assume are filled with notes from one’s devotion time) alongside cool shoes and MacBooks. How are they “mirroring the world”? Don’t those things show devotion to Christ? I would appreciate some clarity regarding this minor issue.

    God bless!

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    1. Hey there! What I mean by this is that we need eva​luation of our hearts to make sure these things are bringing us closer to Christ, not just making us cool in our Christian communities, especially in the younger generations.

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  19. I guess if your view doesn’t line up with pats on the back and exchanging (human) glory…your post doesn’t get shown here. No big deal, but just goes to show you!

    John 12:43 “for they loved the glory that comes from man more than the glory that comes from God.”

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  20. I came across this posted on facebook that a fellow pastor shared. I appreciate the emphasis on the closeness with Christ.
    I would like to offer a little push back. One of my spiritual gifts is empathy. By the grace of God I am able to put myself in another person’s shoes. I don’t have any tattoos, I hate the taste of coffee, and I wouldn’t touch an apple product with a 10 1/2′ pole. But when I go into a coffee shop to get my wife a treat and see a “hipster” at a table with his Macbook Air sitting open next to his heavily highlighted Bible, I don’t think, “He should love Jesus more than he loves being trendy.” I think, “That’s awesome!”
    Since I know your intent is to emphasize the relationship with God, I don’t think it was intentional for you to express any kind of judgement on this group as a whole.
    When it comes to being worldly, I don’t think Peter, Paul, or Jesus meant conforming to the cultural trends so much as conforming to accepted sins. In fact Paul described laying down his rights, his likes, his culture in order to preach the gospel, to become all things to all people. Looked at through that lense, matching cultural trends is a method of strategy for evangelism, not a violation of principles. Yes, we must be careful not to compromise our principles. I think of this successful missionaries who enter a new place, learn the language and customs of the area, and assimilate as best they can.
    Again, I think what you are saying is important to hear, and you have a gift for expressing it with grace, but don’t forget to try and hear it from the opposing perspective.
    Signed, someone who has made fun of the “man bun” on more than one occassion.

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    1. Thank you for your insight. I agree that there are other perpectives.​ This is more of a “heart” check more than anything and making sure we are growing closer to Christ instead of becoming cooler in our Christian communities. The motives in our hearts need to be checked.

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  21. I have worked so hard to try and be the “Trendy Christian” lately and this really humbled me and made me realize it’s so much more than that. I went on to read more of your posts and they are simply incredible. A lot of what you say seems to fit right into my life. Would love to talk to hear more about you 🙂

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  22. Who tries to look holy by how they are seen on the outside? I can think of some, but I think they are cults. All the things you mention are on the outside of the person. Jesus told us “by this will all men know that you are my disciples, that you have love, one for another.”
    For some weird reason the world will be able to look through our outward appearance and see the genuine love that believers have for each other in the church, and know that it is because of Jesus, and by that, we are not of the world, and some be drawn to join us.
    People who have believed in Jesus discover they are no longer of the world, and want to go back, naturally, every generation since Christ has experienced this. The indwelling Holy Spirit will continue his work until we are completed, as was promised, “I will never leave you or forsake you”.
    Rest, be confident that as you mature in Christ Jesus, loving one another in the church, doing the works God has prepared for you, your insides will shine through your faded blue jeans and flannel shirt and blind the world with Jesus.

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  23. I really needed this. Thank you so much! I want my life to be about living for Jesus and I don’t want to blend in with everyone else. Jesus tells us that we will be persecuted (John 15:20), so we should not try to hide from it by being like everyone else or becoming “lukewarm.” I want to be on fire for Christ. I don’t want to live to impress others, I want to live to please God. Lord, help me to focus on you and not the distractions that pull me away and make me fear being different. Set an everlasting fire in me.
    Thank you again so much for posting this. You have no idea how much God is using you to touch people, and I’ve only read a few of your posts so far 🙂

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