A fanatic is someone who is marked or motivated by extreme unreasoning or enthusiasm. I do not find myself to be an unreasonable person. I must admit that I am not a fan either. A fan is someone who has a strong interest in or admiration for a particular sport, art or entertainment form, or famous person. A fan can come and go. When their team or player is on the cutting edge, making headline news and doing all things well, the fans go wild. Yet, when the team loses consistently, season after season, or the player falls short on or off the playing field, fans can easily find someone else to stand behind.
I am not a fanatic and I am not a fan, are you?
I am a Christian, a person who believes in Jesus. I do not choose to follow him on good days, but all days. I do not choose to like him one season and not the next season. I choose to follow him and love him through all seasons, including winter, my least favorite season.
When I think about a fanatic, I think about someone who is obsessed with something. Someone who talks continuously and non stop about it, to the point of force feeding information to someone else who really does not want to hear about it. I am not a fanatic. I would not force my belief in Jesus down your throat. Why? Because God would not do that. He is a gentleman. I am his child. A child learns from their Father. Rather I live my life out loud according to his Word. Actions speak louder than words.
Labeling Christians “religious fanatics” is inaccurate in my opinion. The difference from my side of the fence is that I am not a fan of religion. I am not a fanatic about religion, just as I am not a fanatic about my husband. I am madly, passionately, deeply in love with my husband and the same holds true with Jesus. I love Jesus through all seasons in my life.
- When I receive a diagnosis that I do not want, I still love him.
- When my friend loses a baby to cancer, I still serve him.
- When people walk out of my life and I hurt from rejection, I still trust him.
Fans would walk away when the tough stuff comes along. Fans would take a back seat and wait for the team to rally and start doing well again before they came back alongside to cheer once again. But someone in love stands firm. When you love someone, you are with them in good times and bad in sickness and health for richer or poorer. You choose to stay with them and not walk away from them. That is love.
I am the bride of Christ. He is the groom.
“… I promised you as a pure bride to one husband–Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:2)
You may not agree with how I live my life. You may not understand my reasons for why I choose to partake or abstain from certain activities. But, let me just clearly lay this out from my green pasture to yours, when you love someone, you learn about them. Before you marry, you date, often times before you date, you are friends. Throughout all of it, you learn about that person building a relationship with them. Even after marriage, you are still learning about the person you married and who you are yourself. There is not “instant” know everything button. We do not have an “easy button” or a way to freshly brew a new “Cup O Spouse” from the Keurig, but instead, we choose daily to walk with them, learn with them, grow with them, understand them and ourselves better. The same is true with Jesus.
90% of people would claim that they believe in God, yet, most of that 90% do not spend time with him. Out of that 90%, many will only utter God’s name when disgusted as part of curse words or when a tragedy has hit. They will not choose to groom a relationship with him, grow deeper daily and understand him better by reading the Bible and learning what God has designed as right or wrong. Many in that 90% who say, “I believe,” are the ones who shout, “Religious Fanatic.” I have to wonder if that is any different than the people shouting, “Crucify him!”
“But they kept shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” Luke 23:31
I am not a fanatic nor am I a fan, but I am a follower. Are you?
“Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me.” Matthew 12:30