The modern world is not self-esteem friendly. It seems as though, from the internet to the marketplace to the classroom, a negative retaliatory atmosphere shades this age.
Musicians and hip-hop artist have "diss" tracks, celebrities and politicians clap back, even commercial companies are throwing shade: Coke vs. Pepsi, Wendy's vs. McDonalds.
Today's call-out culture is so seductive that many can't resist the overwhelming temptation to strike out at people on social media. Meanwhile, humans have a fundamental desire for social inclusion, we want to be well received and affirmed.
Yet, as followers of Christ, our exclusive allegiance to Him will generate a unique criticism. If you're doing anything significant, people are going to throw shade on you.
We learn something from Peter and John in Acts. After praying for the man at the temple gate and his healing of paralysis, the Sanhedrin, who were haters of the early followers of Christ, called Peter and John in and threatened them (Acts. 4:18) and then cast shade (a threatening expression of contempt) again (vs. 21).
Peter and John latched onto the key to overcoming intimidation by recognizing that they had to obey God rather than man. Then to solidify their breakthrough, they affirmed that it was impossible to not witness of their encounter with Him. Instead of shutting down, they modeled how you must decide both what you stand for, and value God's opinion above all others.
By doing so, Peter was enabled to cast a different kind of shade (Acts. 5:15), when his shadow healed folks. As modern-day believers, when the shade of the world is not allowed to dull our shine, we are empowered to bring healing to the masses.
The Sanhedrin's whole goal was "to keep this matter from spreading any further." The enemy wants to halt the gospel message of freedom from spreading from you to the world around you. But like Peter and the early church, keep casting the kingdom kind of shade!
In our sixth episode of Keep It 100 with Sean & Christa Smith, we cover this important topic in detail.
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