The phrase, “living in a bubble” is fairly common. In the world of social media, it is used to describe the algorithms that serve up the information we most enjoy — movies we like, opinions that match ours, messages from people we want to follow, and political messages that suit us. If we don’t like something, we unfollow or mute. We don’t have to contend with anything that makes us feel uncomfortable if we don’t want to.
“Living in a bubble” can also be applied to our social circles, neighborhoods, financial status, hobbies, political circles, etc. There is such a thing as a “spiritual bubble” as well — Christians who only know Christians; church goers who only know church goers; members of a particular church who only socialize closely with members of the same church.
Is God okay with such bubbles?
On the one hand, we are to protect ourselves from some people in order to protect our family, use our time wisely, etc. On the other hand, we need to think hard about this issue because Jesus burst the bubbles of protocol regularly by interacting with women, the poor, non-Jews, young and old, the sick and demonic, and He openly exposed hypocrisy in church leaders. Talk about bursting bubbles!
I want to burst the Christian-only bubble.
I was helping to facilitate a prayer time with 4th graders earlier this year. Their little voices reveal the concerns of their lives and we prayed sincerely for each one. On this particular day, I noticed none of their requests had been about anything spiritual or kingdom-minded, so I asked them to share the name of someone in their lives who does not know Jesus yet so we could pray for them.
Each child replied, “We don’t know anyone that does not know Jesus.”
Sure, this was just one day and just a few kids, but I was reminded of adults I know that don’t know anyone who does not know Jesus yet. Though Christian homes and Christian schools have their place, it is also possible to exist in a Christian bubble and never interact with the world we are called to reach according to Matthew 28:16-20: Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore GO and make disciples of all nations…
We are told to go…and be a light.
You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a basket. Instead, they set it on a stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. (Matthew 5:14-15)
If we are the light of the world, then how can the world see us if we don’t get near enough to be seen? I am thankful for ardent Christ followers in secular workplaces dealing with a challenging and changing world while staying close and interacting with people even when it is difficult.
Light shines in darkness.
Daylight Savings Time (DST) was last weekend. We set clocks back one hour. I refreshed my memory about its purpose: For decades, shifting the clocks during the months that have the most sunlight was promoted as a way to save energy. Indeed, the most recent expansion of DST came via an energy bill that Congress passed in 2005.
Over the course of history, DLT has saved money on candles, lamp oil and electricity by limiting hours of darkness. I am thinking God isn’t interested in any of His children implementing cost-cutting measures associated with producing light. After all, shining light into the light serves no purpose at all. Rather, the darker the sky, the brighter His light shines.
We need darkness to shine most brightly.
The world is changing so quickly it can make my head spin and my heart quake. I can become afraid and have had moments of considering quitting my job, not reaching out to neighbors, and pulling back in order to stay safe by choosing a life that demands the least inconvenience and difficulty possible. So far, such thoughts have been fleeting.
I hope they stay that way.
Not everyone shares my heart about staying close to darkness as long as my light for Jesus is shining brightly, but I care about this matter deeply. This week I re-found a quote I had over my desk for years.
I read it regularly.
I have but one candle of life to burn and would rather burn it where people are dying than in a land that is flooded with light. —-
If you are interested in being contacted about participating in a One Gritty Blink Bible study in 2023, click on the Oaks Ministries link below and contact me by email. Let’s focus on things that count for eternity!
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