Yesterday was my little brother’s 28th birthday. I still think of him as a junior higher, perhaps 13 or 14 years old. That is now half his age! I can barely believe it!
This past Thursday, January 9, was my 14th Re-birthday. It was 14 years ago I first knelt down and declared I believed Jesus is my Savior and the Son of God. I was only a couple years older than how I still view my brother when that happened.
This all got me to thinking about something.
Some friends and I had a conversation about conversations a while back. It was all about the exclamation “Really?!”
The full context of this conversation was focused around what one of us had heard about friendly conversation and this one word. Asking this word after a friend or loved one makes a statement is the same as casting doubt on the validity of the statement.
It is one thing if the conversation goes like this:
“I just won a million dollars!”
Winning a million dollars is not a typical occurrence in daily life. Shock and amazement with a little bit of doubt makes sense.
But when the conversation is more like this:
“I lost my phone today.”
In this context, it can said as any of the following:
- Anger: “How could you do that again?”
- Sarcasm: “This is such a surprise coming from you!”
- Astonishment: “This just happened?”
And many others.
The underlying theme is that saying “Really?!” denotes disbelief or mistrust, or at worst it denotes aggression or animosity. And to be fair, most of us use the term in such a way as to say “Tell me more!”
In Jesus’ Name. Really?!
You are probably thinking about how often you say “Really?!” to people, and, if you are like we were, you are attempting to justify your use of the term and explain that you usually mean “Tell me more!”
Let me then ask you this, Christian believer: How do you live your life?
Do go around claiming your connection to your church and as a good Christian, yet those outside the Church look at your example of love and light and think “Is this person really ‘blameless and innocent, [a child] of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16, ESV)
Put another way, do they look at your life and say “Really?! That’s a Christ follower?” And they want to stay away from God because of your example?
Or do you go around sharing the good news of Christ as you live out His commands of love and sacrifice? Do those outside the Church look at your example of love and light and think, “Really?! This kind of thing is true? Tell me more!”
Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test! I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test.
2 Corinthians 13:5-6, ESV