What’s your hobby?

Everyone has a hobby, right?  Yours might include dancing, soccer, cooking, or scrapbooking.  However, my hobbies land more in tune with shopping, laughing, and making a fool of myself; I suppose you could throw photography in there too.  Hobbies are things we do in our free time, wouldn’t you agree?  This we enjoy, but we only do when we aren’t drained in work or school.  Playing soccer probably won’t trump studying for a major test, would it?  Not for me at least.  Guess what, it’s not supposed to, it’s a hobby. 

How about Christianity?  Is that a hobby?  Most people would quote something along the lines of, “It’s not a hobby, it’s a lifestyle.” Sure you can say as many times as you want, but never will it be a lifestyle unless you’re actually living it.  

My psychology professor brought up the point that 90% of the Christians he meets are “doing” christianity as a hobby. After thinking about it, it’s true.  

Let’s act this out.  Imagine you’re walking to class on a casual Tuesday, wearing your favorite pair of jeans with a comfortable V-neck, a colorful scarf wrapped around your neck and the wind blowing at a steady and comfortable pace.  You’re not in a hurry, actually, you have 10 minutes to spare, so you’re walking slowly.  You see a girl crying on the bench with no one around.  You may contemplate for a moment about going up to her to see what’s wrong, but in the end your go over and talk to her.  The conversation leads to a story, the story leads to Jesus, you pray over her, give her a departure hug and be on your way.  That right there was loving God and loving people.  

Let’s change it up: 
You’re in a dead sprint to class on a bitterly cold winter day, wearing your least favorite jeans with a hole in the knee with a stained t-shirt, a scarf that doesn’t match that you put on to hide the stains on your shirt, and the wind is adding to this frigid weather.  You’re going to be late for the class in which your professor takes attendance a minute early and gives no slack.  You see a girl crying on the bench with no on around.  You glance at her, think that you should do something, hope she feels better, wonder what’s wrong, and continue sprinting to class – which you end up being late for despite your effort to arrive on time. 

See the difference?  Maybe that was a little dramatic, but really.  The tendency is that when we have time, we stop and be a Christian, but when we don’t we pass up opportunities to minister to those around.  Even if it’s just a word of encouragement or a moment listening to someone’s day, we should always have the heart to stop and love people.  

Matthew 22:34-40 talks about the greates commandment.  Guess what, it’s to love God and love people.  When we are lost in confusion, when we don’t hear God, when we don’t know what God wants us to do – love God and love people.  Get on your face and love God when you don’t have time.  Love people when you’re at the most stressed moment in your day.  

Let’s be the generation that doesn’t make God / Christianity a hobby, but a priority.