Lifeguards or Non-swimmers?

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Sunglasses. Whistle. The scent of coconut sunscreen. Lifeguards brought the ultimate cool factor when summer rolled around. They reigned over the local pool with an easy authority. Even as we winced at their whistle, we longed to be like them. 

As believers, we serve as spiritual lifeguards, offering a buoy for those struggling to navigate the waters of life. 

Yet often we operate like non-swimmers. 

I teach swimming lessons. Three-year-olds, while not always excited to be there, will make an effort to master the skills they need for water safety. 

The most difficult non-swimmers? 

Older kids. Aged 7-9. These children know enough about water to understand its danger—and they are scared. I mean white-knuckle, screaming-hysterics, claw-the-instructor-to-shreds-as-they-hang-on-for-dear-life scared. 

And as a believer, I’ve been here too. 

Fearful. Afraid to open my mouth and offer a lifeline while a friend thrashes helplessly in a sea of moral relativity and cultural wisdom. 

Why the fear?

Because my faith marks me as different. Culture tells us to fit in. God says He has set us apart. 

We are to be separate, not to isolate and withdraw from a sinful society, but to show a better way. To show that life with God runs far more smoothly than life without Him. 

Called to Be Separate:

1. God chose you. Ephesians 1:4 says, “For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.”

2. You have purpose. Ephesians 2:10 reads, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

3. You represent Him. 1 Peter 1:14-16 says, “As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: ‘Be holy, because I am holy.’” 

Separate in order to Engage:

1. Interact, don’t isolate. Matthew 5:44 reads, “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”

2. Love authentically. Matthew 7:12 says, “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”

3. Live out your faith. Matthew 22 gives us the two greatest commandments: Love God and love your neighbor.

God calls His children to come apart, not to rescue them from the sinful world but to call the world to God’s rescue from sin. We serve as God’s lifeguards. We give aid. We caution. We also teach others how to safely enjoy the water.

We’re on duty. Let’s take our stand. 

Workout of the Week: Lifeguard or Non-swimmer?

Memory Verse: “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10

Meditation Passage: Matthew 22:34-40

Do It: God calls His children to come apart, not to rescue them from the sinful world but to call the world to God’s rescue from sin.