Home > Getting missional > Why I don’t call myself a Christian

Why I don’t call myself a Christian

Last week I mentioned my amazing experience teaching with some of Calgary’s greatest hip hop artists and how they don’t just dance the dance, they LIVE the culture.  Hip hop is a culture, not just dance moves or music.  To love the dance is to engage in the culture of it, not just claim to listen to its music (which most people think is today’s top 40….)

 

When introducing myself to my students, I’m pretty strait-up about where I’m at with hip hop culture.  I tell them of how I came to teach hip hop “by accident”, when I was 22 years old just wanting to get in shape, stumbling upon a hip hop class in Vancouver.  The rest is history.   I joke about how I dress for hip hop in comparison to my normal “mommy clothes” I wear at home.  Or the fact that my favorite store is actually Le Chateau.   I laugh as I mention I drive a mini van – that’s right; gangsta momma in her mini van (“you see me rollin’….”)   When the hip hoppers are cyphering at the club, I’m in bed because it’s past my bed time.   It breaks the ice and gets a few laughs.   I then tell them that to learn from someone who is fully immersed in the culture is an honor.  They’re not just teaching dance moves.  Their passion for what they live is evident and contagious.

 

There’s a big difference between just coming to class and wanting to learn some great moves to show off to friends at a party and, knowing the bigger picture of the history of the move.    There’s a clear contrast between those who just pick up choreography and those who endlessly practice foundation moves found in funk, breaking, popping and locking.  There’s a defining line between one who knows all about hip hop culture and one who lives it.   You can tell those who think they know all about hip hop and those who really know by the type of hip hop music they listen to.  You can see those who know the dedication it takes to master even one of the hip hop dance styles and those who just want enough to “get by”.

 

I was reflecting on this in regards to faith.  Likewise, there’s a big difference between those who go to church, punching in their time, and those who know the bigger picture of the history of what Christ did.  There’s a clear contrast between those who know and use Christian lingo and the odd Bible verse, and those who study it.   There’s a defining line between those who are “down with JC”, and those who have given everything to follow Him.  You can see those who know what it takes to be His follower: to take up their cross daily, and those who just want to do enough to “get by”.

 

I don’t call myself a Christian.  It’s too generic, used too commonly.  I like to call myself a Christ-follower; one who is fully immersed in a new culture of those who know the cost it takes to truly make Him the leader.  Its raw, fresh, radical and truly life-changing.   The life of a disciple is full of adventure and risk.   There’s nothing like living for something greater than yourself.  That’s a culture I don’t want to stand outside of just to observe, or just dab my fingers in bits of it.  I want my whole being saturated with it so hopefully it floods out of my soul onto everyone I meet.

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Categories: Getting missional
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