How to Be An Authentic Christian:
By Dr. Richard D. Dobbins
CBN.com - Do you long to know what
it means to be a real Christian, a 24-7 Christian determined to
live out the faith in a truly authentic manner? Then this practical
look at the character of a Christian is for you.
AUTHENTIC CHRISTIANS ARE ABLE TO TRUST
A lot of people who go to church resemble Christians, but they
lack real authenticity. They have no living, vital relationship
with Jesus Christ.
But Jesus, in the parable of the wheat and the tares (see Matthew
13:24-30), warned that focusing our attention on removing the
"tares," or unauthentic Christians in the church, might damage
The starting point of being an authentic Christian is being
able to trust in God, and along the same lines, being a trustworthy
Many times we as professed Christian are great worriers. But
as we grow in relationship with Christ, we will learn how to
trust God. We learn how to commit things to Him in prayer, and
we find He is faithful to respond to our prayers.
Trust is not always easy.
It is like the story of the man who pushed a wheelbarrow across
a tight wire stretched over Niagara Falls. It was one thing
for observers to say they trusted he could do it; it would be
a different matter for them to volunteer to crawl into the wheelbarrow!
Really trusting God means crawling into the wheelbarrow.
I think when we first come to the Lord our relationship with
Him is so fresh and vital that it is easier to trust Him. But
we need to learn that a true trusting relationship with God
grows stronger as we allow the Holy Spirit to play His role
in our lives, along with the role we play in trust.
Solomon said, "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and
lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge
him, and he shall direct thy paths" (Proverbs 3:5,6, KJV).
There is the part we play: We trust in the Lord; and there
is the part He plays: He directs our path.
Involved in trusting God is being a trustworthy person. The
authentic Christian not only trusts God, but he is someone who
is worthy of the trust of God's people.
AUTHENTIC CHRISTIANS ARE TRANSPARENT
If you have been in the church very long, you know there are
people who are evasive and others who are downright deceptive.
And there are those who are in denial; they have issues in
their lives and their relationships that they never acknowledge
or deal with. These are the kinds of people who often are the
source of division and confusion in the church.
Authentic Christians are transparent. What you see is what
you get with them. They have learned through hard experiences
that the transparent life is more likely to bring them the joy
and peace of the Kingdom, so they are honest about what is happening
in their own lives and they are honest about issues they have
with other people.
Transparent people learn the wisdom of living according to
John's plea that we be transparent in our relationship with
God, with ourselves, and with other people (see 1 John 1:7-9).
That is, we live in confession of our sins, we find forgiveness
of our sins, and we walk in truth and light with God and with
Dr. Richard D. Dobbins is the leader of EMERGE Ministries of
Akron, Ohio. He serves on the faculty of Ashland Theological
Seminary and initiated the coordination of their master s program
in Pastoral Counseling. An acclaimed author, Dr. Dobbins has
created numerous film/video presentations on topics of interest
to believers and has written many books, booklets, articles
and audiotapes on Christian mental health care.
Copyright 2000 Media Ministries of the Assemblies of God. "Guidelines
for Good Living" - the highlights of the daily and weekly radio
program, "From This Day Forward", a joint production of EMERGE Ministries, Akron,
Ohio, and the Media Ministries of the
Assemblies of God, Springfield, Mo.
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