Wednesday, June 15, 2005

What does a barbarian Christ-follower do?

I've been reading Erwin McManus' "The Barbarian Way" and trying to put into my own words what he is saying. I've started talking about barbarianism in this way:

Being a barbarian is having a radical faith in Jesus and acting accordingly.

I was at the gym Monday morning and between sets on the weights I began to make a list of some examples of what a barbarian might do.

As a barbarian you might:
- Ask a stranger or lost friend how you can pray for him (Jessie Prim models this for us)
- Tell someone a story of how God has been working supernaturally in your life
- Have a meaningful and vulnerable worship and prayer time with your family
- Invite neighbors over for dinner
- Start a new LifeGroup to reach more people
- Listen to God and take a risk in doing what God says
- Spend time serving others
- Dig into God's word, not out of tradition or obligation, because out of a deep longing to know God better
- Pray!
- Work on your character to become more like Christ
- Give away significant and reckless amounts of money to others in need
- Invite someone to come along whenever there's time to talk or a chance to serve other together instead of just doing things by yourself
- Keep God's commands (John 14:15)
- Go through life with incredible peace (14:27)
- Risk engaging in a friendship with someone very different from you (John 4)
- Stop doing stuff that makes you so busy you can't build relationships with others (Richie Morris' idea)

The list is endless... there are so many ways that we can live out a passionate, barbaric, primal faith. We just need to throw off everything that hinders and throw ourselves into the adventure of following Jesus with all that we are. I'm not there yet. The use of the word "you" in my list above in no way implies that I live so barbarically and you don't. It's just easier to type "you" than a bunch of "he/she"s :)

If you and I have had an amazing experience coming to know that Christ is life, let's not gradually sink down into the mundane. If you've never yet come to experience true life in Christ, I encourage you to seek that day when you decide once and for all to throw yourself into all Christ has for you.

What are some more practical ways we can be barbarians?


kris said...

good barbaric suggestions, allen. i'm really sensing a movement in people's hearts (like my own) that we are called to return to our more 'barbaric' roots.

we've just made it all so complicated ... and it's not.

love jesus, seek jesus, listen to jesus -- oh yeah -- and love people.

on any given day, i can do a really lousy job on pretty much all of those.

if i would just focus on those things -- 'keep it simple, stupid' -- i would make a much more effective Christ follower...

gene said...

how about hangin out where barbarians hang out? for example, my religious heritage prevented me from going where pagans hung out and shared life together. Clustering in the monestary was more my stile. Now I find myself places I would not have gone 30 years ago, riskier, but meeting more people far from God that way.