How to Live Out Your Worldview
- Todd Wilson
- 2014 26 Sep
I’m normally a fun-loving, easy-going kind of family man. I’m not an ultra-conservative, do your own dentistry, grow all your own food kind of Christian. I don’t like long lists of do’s and don’ts, and I get miffed with leaders who preach them. That said though, I do have worldview issues.
It’s not that I’m against worldviews. I believe that we as Christians should have a biblical, Christian worldview. But here’s the deal. Sometimes I think we knock ourselves out talking about and marketing a Christian worldview, but then don’t behave as Christians. Sound harsh? I don’t mean it to…at least I don’t think I do.
My worldview issues all began when my son attended a worldview camp. He had a great time and learned a whole bunch about Muslims, abortion, and other hot topics, but what troubled me was his observation of the students.
“They talk, live, and act terrible,” he commented. I know he wasn’t being judgmental, he was just shocked by the standards they held (or didn’t hold) and the “real worldview” they lived out. Now, I could pass that off to the fact that he’s led a sheltered, homeschooled life and had never been exposed to the ways of the world. But then we had another discussion. A troubling discussion. It happened after he spent some time at the home of a Christian leader. He shared some of the things he observed and then asked, “Dad, if they smoke, drink, watch crummy movies, and use bad language…what’s the difference?”
It was his tone that troubled me. It was sad and disillusioned. I know he expected more from people who preach about having a Christian worldview. At the same time, I felt he was looking at me as though maybe I was being too critical. That maybe I had the problem.
After all, I seemed to be the odd, fundamental, Bible-thumping, prude, while all the Christian teens who post on Facebook seem fun, well-adjusted, and…JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER TEEN IN THE WORLD. In fact, they talk about loving God and seeking the Spirit, and then watch crummy movies and use bad language.
He would ask if we could watch a certain movie, and I would check it out on Plugged In and then have to tell him no because it had too many negatives. Things like bad language, sexual immorality, immodesty, etc.
I know my kids get frustrated…I don’t blame them. I’m frustrated for them. But what really miffs me is that we continue to talk about Christian worldviews and then go on living like the WORLD.
My thinking, and what I want for my kids, is that if you claim to be a Christian, then you should live like a Christian. Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying it’s about clothing, entertainment, and Facebook. All I’m saying is that it’s about clothing, entertainment, and Facebook!!! It’s about all of life. It’s the biblical way we view the world.
Truth is, most of us like talking about safe worldviews…about things we rarely, if ever, deal with. I don’t often have a discussion with someone contemplating an abortion, someone working on stem cell research, or even a Muslim. But every day I drive my car (obeying or not obeying the speed limit), interact with my family, post on Facebook, and have dealings with folks at Walmart.
I once heard a guy say, “I can tell if a person is a Christian by how he answers a couple of revealing ‘worldview’ questions.”
“Shoo, that’s nothing,” I said later. “I can tell if a person’s a Christian by how he drives his car.” I mean it too. As Christians we should obey the laws. Now, don’t get me wrong. I fail, but I don’t blow it off as no big deal…it’s a HUGE deal. I’ve had to apologize on occasion for letting my family down by disobeying the road laws. But how can we say we have a Christian worldview and then drive like the rules don’t matter or apply to us?
How can we say we have a Christian worldview and then wear clothes that cause men to stumble, watch shows that spew out trash, play games that glorify evil, and post things that are improper and immoral?
Not to sound super-spiritual here, but that was Jesus’ point when he got in their ultra-religious faces and said, “You think it’s about killing your brother…but it’s really about how you feel about him in your heart and what you say to him. You think it’s about committing improper acts with someone who is not your mate, but I tell you it’s about how you LOOK at them.”
Remember when God said to his people, “You honor me with your lips but your hearts are far from me?” I think he could have just as easily said, “You proclaim all this worldview stuff…but then you don’t live any differently.”
What’s the solution then? A bunch of rules that we should keep about movies, Facebook, and what we wear? Definitely not. In fact, I’d run away from anyone who gives you that list. BUT…there are movies that we shouldn’t be watching, things on Facebook that we shouldn’t be posting, and clothing that we shouldn’t be wearing. Why? Because we’re Christians.
And here’s the deal, Mom and Dad, it begins with you. Your children need you to live what you say you believe. They don’t need perfection. They just need to see how you love your spouse, how you seek forgiveness when you don’t think you did anything wrong, how you love unconditionally, how you forgo promotions to spend more time with your family, how you turn off certain programs because God would not be pleased, how you handle poor service at McDonald’s, how you handle your taxes, how you save, spend, and give your money, how you turn the other cheek when wronged…etcetera, etcetera, etcetera (bonus point if you know what movie that is from).
Go ahead and send your kids to worldview camps and have them read worldview books, but more importantly, demonstrate a REAL Christian biblical worldview. Because it’s not about what we say…but about how we live.
Todd Wilson, author of Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe and The Official Book of Homeschooling Cartoons, is a dad, writer, conference speaker, and former pastor. Todd’s humor and gut-honest realness have made him a favorite speaker across the country and a guest on Focus on the Family.
Todd, and his wife Debbie, homeschool their eight children in northern Indiana and travel around America in the Familyman Mobile. You can visit Familyman Ministries at www.familymanweb.com
© 2013 by Home Educating Family Association. All rights reserved. Used with permission. Originally published in 2013 Issue 1 of Home Educating Family Magazine, the publication with the most meaningful discussions taking place in the homeschooling community today. Visit hedua.com to read back issues and for more articles, product reviews, and media.
Publication date: September 26, 2014