What Being A Christian Really Means Because It’s Not Just Sharing Bible Verses And Going To Church

girls with arms up, happy girls celebrating, being a Christian, what it means to be a Christian
Leo Hildago

Being a Christian is not about putting on your Sunday best and sitting in a pew. It’s not about folding your hands in prayer before you fall asleep or eat a meal. It’s not about memorizing scripture, going to confession, or shoving your religious beliefs down the throats of anyone who will listen.

Being a Christian is not about the clothes you wear or the people you associate with. It’s not about the music you listen to, or what you do on a Friday night. It’s not about how many prayers you’ve asked for, or whether or not they’ve been answered. It’s not even about donating a portion of your paycheck to the church, or some other ‘requirement’ of having a ‘strong faith.’

Being a Christian goes beyond the surface. It’s about the energy you put into the world, and how you choose not only to live, but create and spread light to everything you touch.

Being a Christian doesn’t automatically mean you’re better than everyone else. It doesn’t mean you’re forgiven, simply by saying ‘I believe,’ and can go about living life as you please. It’s not that you have all the answers, or never feel lost, broken, or defeated. It doesn’t mean you won’t have doubts.

Being a Christian is about connection—to other people, to strangers, to fellow believers, and even (and especially) to those who don’t see the world the way you do. It’s about being open to souls that need guidance in a way that doesn’t set you above. It’s about forgiveness and showing grace as God has shown you. It’s about trying to live a life that honors your Creator, even in all your imperfection.

It’s not about thinking you are more worthy of love than someone who doesn’t believe. It’s not about looking down on a person because he or she is struggling, or choosing not to follow God’s light. It’s not about pushing people away who think differently than you, or judging those who have a lifestyle that doesn’t match your own.

It’s not about telling everyone how they must live, but loving every soul as your brother and sister, and showing Jesus’ compassion to them, even when you don’t agree.

Being a Christian is not about putting Bible verses as the captions in your Instagram photos. It’s not about having perfect Sunday attendance, or going through every step for Communion or Baptism or formal church events. It’s not about having all the items checked off on this ‘perfect Christian checklist.’ It’s not about rejecting anything and anyone who doesn’t follow what you do.

Christianity is about action. It’s about being a person who takes that faith and makes it active—being someone who lives out the truths in the way they interact with people, in the way they show genuine interest in the world, in the way they are a support to friends, family, and strangers who need it.

Being a Christian is about being selfless. Is about putting others first, even if that doesn’t make sense in you self-love story, or personal journey. Even if you’re tired of giving to people who don’t give back. Even if there’s nothing more you can share.

It’s about listening to others. Not always having your mouth open, spewing out your beliefs, but taking time to learn what it is that others think and why. And not convincing them your way is right, but showing them who Jesus is.

Being a Christian is not about making your life spotless, but rejoicing in the beautiful mess you were created to be. And doing your best to honor God in all your imperfection because you are His.

It’s not about creating distance between yourself and the people around you, but welcoming everyone in because that is what Jesus did. Because you are not meant to stand in judgment of what’s ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ or ‘good’ or ‘bad,’ but to love. As He loved us.

Being a Christian is not simply talking the talk, but walking the walk. Walking in the path of your Father every single day—even and especially when it’s hard.

Being a Christian is not about what clothes adorn your body, but how you use your body to honor Him. Not about what you do on a Friday night, but how your actions, every single day, teach others who He is. Not about being perfect, but showing that there’s more to this life when you give yourself to Him.

At the end of the day, being a Christian is opening yourself to a world that might not agree, might not accept, might not love you in return, but doing so anyways because you are passionate in faith and you want others to experience a sliver of that goodness. Because wow, God is so good. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

Marisa Donnelly

Marisa is a writer, poet, & editor. She is the author of Somewhere On A Highway, a poetry collection on self-discovery, growth, love, loss and the challenges of becoming.

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