Growing up, I was a Washington Redskins fan. I watched their games, cheered for them, had a pennant on my wall, and when they won, I talked about it. When they lost, I talked about it. Most of all, I “hated” the Dallas Cowboys. As of today, I can’t remember the last time I’ve watched a football game in the last twenty years. Redskins or otherwise. Yet, for the better part of those twenty years, I considered myself a Redskin fan. However, despite my claim that the Redskins were my “favorite” team, I could tell you nothing about them. In fact, I have been so removed from football that I couldn’t tell you anything about what was going on.

A few years ago, when someone asked me who my favorite football team was, I realized there was no point in telling them the Redskins. First, because watching football doesn’t matter to me, and second, it felt like a lie for all of the reasons I’ve mentioned. Therefore, I tell people when they ask that I don’t watch football. Because I don’t. When I think about it, I only watched football when I was growing up because my dad watched it. He liked the Redskins and hated the Cowboys, so I did too.

Some of us are like that with Christianity. Perhaps our parents were “into it,” or it seemed like the thing to do one time. We went to church, prayed, read the Bible, and volunteered. We wore our I (heart) Jesus shirts, and anyone who saw us knew we were a Christian. Because of the bumper sticker on our car or the shirt we wore. Now, instead of reading the Bible, going to church, praying, or volunteering, we don’t do any of those things. Or, if we do them, it’s a rare occasion. Like at Christmas.

Can we really call ourselves Christians, then, if we’re not doing anything a Christian could or should be doing?

I know what you’re thinking, “I’m saved by grace. I don’t need to do anything!” Maybe you’re not thinking that. Perhaps you’re so far removed from Christianity, like I am with football, that you don’t care about being a Christian anymore. I hope that’s not the case with you. Instead, let’s hope you believe you are saved by grace and move on.

In Peter’s second letter, he starts off the letter by talking about one’s calling as a Christian. Peter points out that God has given us everything we need to live the lives we’ve been called to live.

His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.

2 Peter 1:3 (NIV)

Then, Peter says something intriguing about the “everything we need” and how we’re to treat that thing.

Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires (emphasis added).

2 Peter 1:4 (NIV)

Along with the things we need to lead a godly life, we have God’s “very great and precious promises.” However, the promises of God haven’t been given, so we can do nothing with them. The same goes for everything else God’s given to us. Hence, Peter points out that the Christian can “participate in the divine nature.” We can participate because we’ve “escaped the corruption in the world,” which is “caused by evil desires.”

Often we might think that we “become” a Christian, and that’s that. We live out the rest of our days here on earth, die, and go to heaven. However, when we read the Bible, it’s clear that being a Christian means being active as a Christian. Just look at a few verses and see how an inactive person will miss out.

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!

Isaiah 26:3 (NLT)

Isaiah 26:3 doesn’t tell us that God will keep us in perfect peace if we think about football. No, we must keep our thoughts fixed on Jesus. Frankly, this is impossible if you’re not participating in the divine nature of being a Christian by reading the Bible, praying, and going to church. At the very least. We often want the peace of God without doing our part to obtain that peace. What does our part look like?

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Romans 12:2 (NIV)

Romans 12:2, like Isaiah 26:3, requires action on our part. We’re not to conform to the world. Specifically, “the pattern of this world.” When you do the same things over and over again, that’s a pattern. You can either contribute to godly or ungodly ways. You really can’t do both. You cannot serve both God and anything else.

I put on righteousness as my clothing; justice was my robe and my turban.

Job 29:14 (NIV)

I like this verse from Job because it demonstrates that following God is an action. Every day we get dressed. We put on clothes and go into the world. Before we get dressed, we have a choice. It’s cold outside, so we’ll put on something for the cold. It could be raining so we’ll put on something for that. Yet, no matter the weather, no one leaves the house naked. Hopefully. As Christians, we need to make a choice every day. Just as it says here in Joshua.

But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

Joshua 24:15 (NIV)

Although Joshua was talking about making a lifetime commitment to serving the Lord, it’s something we have to commit to each day. After all, there’s a reason why putting stuff on or taking stuff off is a common theme in the Bible. As Paul said to the Ephesians:

You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Ephesians 4:22-25 (NIV)

Therefore, as Christians, we must make a choice every day to follow the Lord, and when we make that choice, we must follow it with action. Otherwise, we’re just spectators missing out on the divine promises of God that require us to do something.

Do you know God? God knows you, and he loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, and he wants you to know him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so we could be free of guilt, freed from death, and live eternally with him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation:

Lord Jesus, forgive me for all my sins. I repent from my ways. Wash me in your blood and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I believe that you died on the cross, were buried, and on the third day, God the Father raised you from the dead. Right now, Lord Jesus, I open the door to my heart and receive you into my heart as my Lord and personal Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer, then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment, and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.