One of the biggest cultural trends for Christians to lookout for is to assume that being on the ‘right’ side of an issue is a true sign of righteousness. Author and Pastor Trevin Wax shines a light on the temptation to give into cultural trends.
“We find online a lot of what we call ‘virtues signaling,’ where we’re signaling our virtue to one another based on the stances we’re taking or the statements we’re making, whether it be on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other places.”
“I think that’s very dangerous because we’re not justified by having a right doctrine or by having the right stance on a particular political issue. We can be right in what we believe, and yet, still be very wrong in how we’re treating others. We can still be very worldly in the way that we take that stance or in the way that we make a case for Christianity.”
This trend can lead us to sowing the seeds for division and conflict in how we interact with others.
According to Trevin, another trend that we may be tempted to follow is the notion that our happiness depends on our individual pursuits. This trend will take us down a road to complete exhaustion.
“If everybody is responsible for their own happiness, for pursuing whatever it is they want the most, then that means that your own happiness is completely dependent on whatever it is that you decide to do with your life.”
“What if you’ve made the wrong call, you pursued the wrong path, or you’ve made a wrong decision? If you’re not happy, there’s only one person that ultimately can be at fault for that and it’s yourself.”
Thankfully, there is a solution for those of us who have been striving in life or becoming too self-reliant. Christianity is an open invitation for all to experience true rest, happiness, and fulfillment that comes from God alone.
“Rest comes, ironically, when we look to God and we look to Jesus Christ and we know that we are fully known and yet still also loved. It’s only really in Christ that we find the rest that we truly are longing for.”
In a world that tells us to look inwards, we need to remember that the gospel message calls us to look upward at all times. We need to rise above the tides and avoid our tendency to drift away from that truth.
Trevin Wax is Director for Bibles and Reference at LifeWay Christian Resources and a visiting professor at Wheaton College. He is the general editor of The Gospel Project, and serves as a teaching pastor in Middle Tennessee.