In Israel

(Vili) #1

Hi all
I’m currently in Israel doing a Kibburz for 2 and a half months, before going to do a DTS with YWAM Kansas City straight after for 6 months
Like before in High School I’m in a place where it is non religious (although Judaism is central in this place, but there are those that are agnostic, and atheists).

I also realise that unlike ISS, I think God wants me to focus more on my relationship with him. At the moment there are only 2 Christians here, one of them is leaving soon, and I think that might be a suggestion from God that my focus should be solely on Him, without/ with less Christian’s around.

My problem however has to do more with the fact that I MIGHT not be able to spend more time with my friends that aren’t Christians (less party’s (I don’t drink), more sleeping early and reading Gods word in a longer time span, this is all being a guess). Is it possible to still be able to have a good time and still focus solely on God, and can I still strengthen my relationship with Christ with less/ no Christians?

By the way, currently doing a 30 day challenge to just get into the habit of reading the Bible daily, before developing another habit in another 30 day challenge next month. Wish me luck :blush:

(Lindsay Brandt) #2

Hello, Vili! Sounds like an interesting time for you! I would absolutely LOVE to see Israel (among other places) someday! What an awesome opportunity for you! Now to answer your question about spending time with less or no other Christians and having a good time in regard to focusing more on God.

First, I would caution that reading something like this as a sign from God that He wants you to spend less time with other Christians is reading too much into the situation. Although we do need time alone with God, fellowship with other believers helps sharpen us–helps us grow. However, when we have times that we are perhaps not able to be around other Christians as much for one reason or another, then I do believe that more time spent with God than usual is needed. At this point in my line of thinking, then, would come my thoughts regarding your question about whether or not you can still have a good time, which is in the context of spending time with friends who are not Christians, and still focus solely on God. First, having “a good time,” as you mean it here (parties with unbelieving friends), is temporary. Those good times are only good times for the hours that they last, and you’ll be thirsty for more before you know it. However, tending to your relationship with the Lord, drinking from the living waters He provides by learning to abide in Him, will give you joy that lasts longer than any good time a party can promise. I’m not saying you can’t go to the parties (so long as it is not enticing you to do and say things that go against God), but I am “hearing” that you are sensing the Lord pulling or calling you to spend more time with Him and that perhaps that includes giving up the parties and time spent with these friends for a little while–a sort of fasting. If that is the case, you should act in accordance with your conscience (Romans 14:23 applies here in principle). You can still enjoy yourself. It may just be a different kind of enjoyment, something deeper and more satisfying, and you never know, the Lord may use your increased time spent focusing on Him to witness to your unbelieving friends, as you probably don’t have to completely cut time with them.

Your relationship with Christ can be strengthened at any time in your life with or without other Christians. Don’t get me wrong or misunderstand. God calls us into fellowship with other believers, and he uses others in our lives to help us grow. Spending time with other believers is vital. Believers (not an individual believer) make up the Church, and the Church is the body and the bride of Christ. Separating one’s self from that is not a good idea and goes against God’s plan for us as believers as outlined in the New Testament. What I mean is when times come up in which we are not, for one reason or another, able to be around other Christians, that does not mean that we cannot grow in our relationship with Christ. I should also say that the absence of Christians should not be prerequisite to your focusing more on the Lord. So, if you do start spending more time with the Lord, and you meet another Christian who wants to fellowship, it isn’t necessary that you turn him/her away. What is necessary is that you honor your devotion to spending more time focusing on the Lord regardless of who is around. Under normal circumstances, though, when we are able to be around other believers, it is not a good idea to go “lone ranger.” Christians who refrain from doing fellowship with other believers often have a stunt in their growth.

Well, there are my thoughts for what they are worth. Hopefully others will chip in :slight_smile:. Hope something in here helps. Praying that as you read your Bible for your challenge that you truly seek Him and that He meets you there in a way you’ve never encountered before, that the words on the page come alive to you and stir your inner man. We are never done going deeper with the Lord!