Not Defined by the World

You could call this post ‘Being a Rebel Part’ 2, because I can’t stop thinking about that post. It’s been a good challenge for me, and I feel like an expansion on the post should be done.

We are living in a very negative time right now. There is an event coming up that will make some people “happy” and some angry.

Things are said, words are twisted, and soon backlash ensues. It can get to a person hearing all the depressing news, seeing negativity being tossed around like ping-pong balls.

It is not a pretty or fair sight. And because of that, we allow the world and its universal emotions to get to us. And therefore, we get thrown into the same boat as everyone else. A doom and gloom boat being sunk by negativity.

That is when we have to push back and say I’m not going to be defined by the world’s emotions and crowd followers, I am going to be a…rebel.

Going against the crowd is not an easy task; imagine a large city, like New York City, and everyone is going in one direction. And one person starts going in the opposite direction, that person is going to face some resistance. But, keep pushing, you are headed for a much better path.

We might be able to fight the crowd, but negativity is something more difficult to fight. Because it is constantly around us, and if we are not careful, it can drag us down into a pit of despair.

Two quotes fit perfectly here, and I would like to share them.

An entire sea of water can’t sink a ship unless it gets inside the ship. Similarly, the negativity of the world can’t put you down unless you allow it to get inside you.

And

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. – Charles R. Swindoll

The world’s negativity and slumps only get to us, if we allow it to. There will be times when you feel that you’ve been insulted, or embarrassed. And there are two ways we can react; we can have a fit and explode

Or we can simply let it roll, and not let the words get to us, and just move on with a smile

Which brings me to my second quote.

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. – Charles R. Swindoll

Some people just love to get a rise out of us. They get us flustered and irritated. And there are times that we overreact, and that’s exactly what that person wants. But we don’t have to react, it’s difficult, but it can be done, simply by being titanium.

Now, before I go on, you might think my line of writing is extreme or redundant, but it is not.

We are living in an age that is very troubling and negative, where the world is forcing you, more or less, to believe the same thing. Talk the same way. Act the same way. There has to be a point where we push back and say no.

As Christians, God has set us apart for a reason. To be in the world but not of it. John 15:19 says

If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.

And 1 John 2:15

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

We have no choice to be in the world, but we do not have to conform or abide by the world. That is why we should be like titanium. Titanium ranks number four in the top 10 strongest metals. It can withstand a lot and often is difficult to break. But, why titanium? Because there is a song by the same title; a song that talks of being resilient and not backing down.

Three men in the Bible acted like titanium, they resisted and didn’t break. In the book of Daniel, we find Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. They were three men who served King Nebuchadnezzar, but above all, they served and obeyed God. King Nebuchadnezzar built a massive gold idol and he then gave a command, that we find in Daniel 3:4-6

4 Then a herald cried aloud: “To you it is commanded, O peoples, nations, and languages,

5 that at the time you hear the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, you shall fall down and worship the gold image that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up;

6 and whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.”

When the time came to bow down to the idol, everyone, the crowd the followers, bowed down. But, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego refused. Which made King Nebuchadnezzar very angry.

Daniel 3:13 says

Then Nebuchadnezzar, in rage and fury, gave the command to bring Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. So they brought these men before the king.

The king was so angry that they didn’t bow down, and he questioned them

Daniel 3:16-18 says

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter.

17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king.

18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego flat out refused to follow the crowd and go against God and what was right.

That made the king furious, and he threw them into a fiery furnace. But God protected them in the midst of it all.

Daniel 3:25

“Look!” he answered, “I see four men lose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.”

King Nebuchadnezzar then called them out of the furnace

Daniel 3:27

And the satraps, administrators, governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together, and they saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them.

When we go against the crowd, we may face persecution, but God will protect us.

Obey God and leave all the consequences to Him – Dr. Charles Stanley

And that’s really what we have to do. Be a good rebel, don’t go the world’s way, and if the crowd gives you trouble, leave it in God’s hands.

He’s got His hand on you all the time. So, don’t fear the world, follow the right and “rebellious” path, and leave the rest to God.

Past Posts:

Devotional: Creation Sings the Father’s Song

Devotional: In the Morning, Give me Jesus

Wednesday Post: How to Be a Good Rebel