I’m so very grateful for Two Cities Church. The topic for the next few weeks is all about how our story connects to an even greater story, the best story of all time. Key point: Culture today is telling us a story.
Think about, so many times when Jesus spoke, he told stories. Stories that were meaningful, stories that made an impact, stories that brought the Kingdom of God into our world. And whether we realize it or not, culture today is telling us a story (as someone who works in communications and marketing and teaches marketing, I can really relate to this. Stories is what connects with people).
One of the big takeaways from church today was, “Be more influenced by the Kingdom than by culture.” Oh, it’s so easy to be influenced by culture.
You know how it goes with social media. You see friends who are enjoying a date night out with their spouse, friends on the vacation of a lifetime, friends who just landed that new dream job they’ve been praying about, friends enjoying a girls weekend at a spiffy resort, and on and on these glamourous stories go.
While “seeing” all of these stories, you can’t help but think:
😔The last date night I had with my husband was when we were dating
😔I wish I had money for a vacation, it would be nice to get away
😔 I hate my job and honestly if I could quit today, I would but I have too much debt to pay off
😔 Girls weekend getaway? I wish I had the time, the money and close friends to get away with
And before you know it, you walk away from your computer screen unhappy and discontented with life. Why? Because you feel like you should be so much further along and you should be “more successful.” You start wondering why your life doesn’t look like “their” life and why your stories are not like their stories. Whether you’ve realized it or not, You’ve just been influenced by culture as to what your life “should” look like.
We live in a world where “bigness” is celebrated. The big house, the big paycheck, the big adventure, the big opportunity, the big vacation, the big influence, the big stories. As Pastor Kyle said, no one talks about smallness. But yet, the Bible does:
“The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field. Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds come and perch in its branches.” ~ Matthew 13:31-32
My biggest takeaway from this? Be willing to sow into the lives of others, even when it’s small. Be patient and have an eternal perspective. As Kyle said, “drop a seed.” One conversation at a time. One prayer at a time. Allow God to grow you through your smallness. And ultimately, choose to be more influenced by the Kingdom than by culture. Don’t let social media influence you and your thinking as to how your life should look. Don’t let social media define what success should look like in your life. Instead, choose significance over our culture’s definition of success. When you allow yourself to be influenced by the Kingdom, you’ll find significance which is worth so much more than culture’s definition of success.
Here’s a great takeaway question to think through, that came from Pastor Kyle: Where am I not allowing the Kingdom of God to influence me?