To Make A Difference, We Must Be Different

To Make A Difference, We Must Be Different

Posted on 12. Oct, 2009 by in Kingdom Notes eZine

Apostolic Note Vol 3 No 15 (download pdf)

In the market place, everything is about being different. Automakers advertise the different features that make their cares distinctly different from the competitors. Clothing designers have a distinguishing style that makes each of them different. Sports teams wear different uniforms to set them apart from the other team.

In personal lives, most people want to be different. In discussions we speak of our achievements, degrees, awards and dreams, all in an attempt to set us apart as different from those around us. Just look at the fashion of the younger people, they dress in such a way to stand out from the normal crowd. One of the negative factors in selling homes today is a neighborhood where all the homes look alike – people want to be different.

So with all this emphasis on being different, I pose a couple questions:

1. “Why do so many Christians not want to stand out?”
2. “Why do we want to be like the ones we are called to influence?”

A few months ago, I had a great discussion with a couple of my pastor friends at Starbucks. The three of us were in agreement that if the church (now I mean the biblical church, not man’s) is to impact this world, we must be willing to step out and be different and act like the church. Another friend says: “If we want to see a book of Acts revival, we must start acting like the people/church of the book of Acts.“

There is a terrible destructive myth in the arena of Christianity: in order to reach non-Christians effectively you must not be too different from them. If you are different you will shock or scare them. Therefore, what has happened to churches is that they are no longer distinct from those they are trying to impact. They look, act and speak the same as the secular world. Being like the group you are trying to influence gives the appearance that you have nothing different to offer them.

This stands in clear contrast to the teachings of Jesus. We are told that we are the “salt of the earth” & “the light of the world” (Mt 5:13-16). Why? Because just a little will make a powerful difference. A little salt is a powerful influencer: just think how little it takes to change the taste of your food! A little light is powerful. In total darkness you strike a match and now it is not totally dark. If others are in the room they will look and gravitate to the light. Salt and light are different and they make a difference.

If we want to make a difference, we must be different. If we desire to impact this world with the Kingdom of Heaven, we must act or demonstrate our difference. Jesus’ first message was “repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Mt 3:2). The word “repent” means to change your thinking. The Lord’s first message was not about going to heaven: it was about thinking different. It was about thinking from a Kingdom perspective. This transformed thinking would translate into Kingdom actions. If we think different we will be different, if we are different we will act different. If we are to make a difference we must be different.

Food for thought: Is your life distinctly different from those you are attempting to influence?

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3 Responses to “To Make A Difference, We Must Be Different”

  1. Cinda Maasdam

    22. Oct, 2009

    This is good. We are to be a separated people, coming out from among the world. The bible states If we have love for the world the love of the father is not in us. We display who we are trying to please,the world, or our heavenly
    father. Every aspect of our lives we should represent him.
    We are not to let this world conform us, we need to be impacting the world. It wont happen with compromise.

    We really appreciate you Bro. Schmalz, really enjoy your teaching, Keep it up!

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  2. Paula G

    12. Jan, 2011

    Oh Hallelujah….Amen!!!

    It is so refreshing to read articles by others with the same thought or motive! This is what I tell our group of people on a regular basis! FIRST, we MUST change our THINKING and the more we think like Him, putting on the NEW MIND the more we will be like the world and the greater the influence in the lives of others and we have been seeing this happen as people continue to practice this formula! Thanks!

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  3. Keith

    19. Feb, 2011

    Amen Awesome!!

    Your salt and light can’t work if you stay away from sinners. By never spending time with them. In order to get salt on something you must get close enough to the food(sinner) in order to sprinkle salt. We must GO to the darkness in order for our light to be seen in darkness. Your light can’t be seen if you stay around other light sources all the time. Get out and be WITNESSES. We want revival GOD also wants revival but he needs us to be his hands an feet. God is a spirit he needs us to pray and go to activate his will. Thy kingdom come!!

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