He had put it off as long as he could. He hadn’t been feeling as well as he would like to, he had put on a few too many pounds lately, and he got tired easier than he used to. His wife had been telling him for some time he should go to the doctor and make sure that nothing was wrong. He couldn’t put it off any longer so went in for a physical exam. He thought it would be a waste of time and was sure the doctor would simply tell him, “You’re not a spring chicken anymore.”
After a thorough examination, along with all the associated lab work and health history forms that are a part of the process, the doctor came in to deliver the verdict. Before the doctor could begin the dialog, the man preempted him by saying, “So, doc, tell me that old age is catching up with me.” Instead, the doctor told his patient that he must immediately make some major lifestyle changes, beginning with his diet. Then the doctor went over a detailed regimen that he should begin at once. When the man came home later that afternoon, his wife asked him, “What did the doctor say?” He answered in a gruff voice, “He told me that if I want to stay healthy, I have to eat what I don’t want, drink what I don’t like, and do what I’d rather not do!”
Unfortunately, some people believe that the Christian life is like that. They’re afraid that to become a Christian they would have to make major lifestyle changes that they wouldn’t want to make. They see being a Christian as restrictive, boring, bland, and continually doing what they’d rather not do; singing slow songs in 17th century English, and listening to long, boring sermons. But that is very far from the truth.
For sure, becoming a Christian is a major lifestyle change; but there is nothing boring or bland about it. Consider this. Jesus, the Son of God, is willing to forgive us our sins and take charge of our life if we place our trust in him. That isn’t boring; that’s exciting! Or, how about this…the very God of creation who spoke the world into existence eons ago will speak to you through his Spirit and through his Word. That’s not boring; that’s inspiring!
For sure, becoming a Christian is not without its challenges. The Bible says that it is a rebirth. In fact, becoming a Christian means becoming a new creation. The New Testament writer, John, assures us that, this new birth is not based on a person’s heredity, station in life, or even his own willpower. John says that when we become a Christian, we are born, “… not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:13).
Paul, the Apostle, tells us that, when we come to Christ, we can expect some lifestyle changes. He makes it clear that we can expect to be overwhelmed with “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” (Galatians 5:22, 23 New American Standard Bible). And for any of us, that is a major lifestyle change!