Supposed to Be Surprised

People have always been surprised by me. I do this, but don’t do that. Have never done this, or don’t care to do that. Some people just don’t know how to respond. They laugh, ask questions, roll their eyes, or change the subject. Some are taken aback, genuinely surprised that I don’t join the crowd.

It’s okay. I choose to do {or not do} some pretty weird things. I have reason for them all – hopefully biblical and not misguided. But I realize that even some Christians might think I’m a little crazy now and then. None of us has perfect wisdom, and we’re all being sanctified {I, for one, am nowhere close to “arrived”}, so I expect some minor differences in the Family.

What concerns me is the pervasive line of thinking which all but calls Christians to conform to the lifestyle of the world, making a surprised look on a non-believer’s face seem strange.

“As Christians, we need to relate to non-Christians. You know, ‘become all things to all people.’ They shouldn’t think we’re oddballs. They should see that we’re just like them – except for the whole Jesus thing.” So we enter their world, do what they do, say what they say, watch what they watch. And the next thing you know, we think like they think. And what has happened? We’ve become like one of them, instead of them becoming like the Christ we profess. They appeal to us with their deceitful darkness, when we are the ones with the Light – the shouldn’t-be-a-secret ingredient to true, joyful transformation. If only it were obvious.

supposed to be surprised

Dear Christian, we ought to be, to every lost soul, a freak of nature. That’s what Jesus was. He entered a world that wasn’t his own. He didn’t belong or fit in. And if those crowds of onlookers weren’t weirded out by the fact that a King was living like a Servant, they might have noticed when he loved sinners but lived nothing like them. They might have noticed that he sat with sinners and exposed their sin, but he never joined them in their sin. As a matter of fact, he didn’t even come close.

Instead, Jesus, the epitome of “contextualization,” lived in perfect holiness.

What did it get him? Gasps. Stares. Laughs. Hatred. Death.

And that’s what he said would come to those who follow him.

You will be hated by all for my name’s sake. Mark 13:13

We worry that lost souls are surprised at our holiness?

Oh, Christian. They’re supposed to be surprised.

. . . live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God. For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. With respect to this, they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery, and they malign you; but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. 1 Peter 4:2-4

 [image credit:]

18 thoughts on “Supposed to Be Surprised

  1. Excellent post! It reminds me of 1 Peter 2:9. We are a chosen generation…a peculiar people. Nobody really wants to be peculiar or odd. But as true followers of Jesus, we are different. “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:”

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  2. I love the verses you posted, too….not for human passions but for the will of God. With all the craziness of the world, it is so hard to keep our mind focused on this one thing. Thanks for this important reminder. I really appreciate you linking up at Together on Tuesdays 🙂

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  3. Amen. Oh, that I would be so focused to always live for God’s will, and His alone. I am grateful that He love me so and forgives me when I try to walk in my own strength. Thank you for these words to chew upon.

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  4. Lydi a- I love this and I love that we are neighbors at #TGISaturday today too. We are supposed to be a ‘freak of nature’ to others who don’t know Jesus – I love that – such good thoughts and words you wrote today – thank you


  5. Lydia, I laughed through this because as I grew up everyone called my grandmother’s sister, “Weird Aunt Marion.” She was bold in sharing her faith and passionate about her love for Jesus. By the time I was in college, I realized I wanted to be just like her!!

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  6. My oldest son dropped by the house when he was in college one day (we live in a college town), and he said, “Mom, we’re not like everyone else” and, I was like, “well, yeah. God’s called us to be a peculiar people.” I’m not sure if that’s what he meant – but that’s how I responded 🙂 We are called to be different – because God-normal is not world-normal! Kuddos to you also being part of the God-normal family!

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  7. Exactly! We are to be a “peculiar people”… I would worry if I did fit in! 🙂 Thank you for sharing with us on the Art of Home-Making Mondays Lydia!

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  8. We are to love the sinner, those who love Jesus. We show grace, love and compassion just as Jesus did. He loved them where they were at, not living as they did but loving them in their messed up world. We often forget we are all sinners and without His grace I am messed up just as much! Thank you, Jesus, that you loved me anyways! 🙂 Stopping by from #IntentionalTuesday

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