John Seel wrote in the (now out-of-print) Evangelical Forfeit, that “we must confess our preoccupation with making a difference rather than being different” when it comes to being the church. How often has the former led to arrogance and pride? How many churches have become about something other than the Cross of Jesus because they wanted to leave a legacy, make an impact, or something powerful? Seel’s critique of the church was aimed at the uncritical use of the tools of modernity into the work of the church – a choice that he felt would one day require the evangelical soul. The church might look good, but, in fact, be dead or impotent.
Being different will take humility. Humility doesn’t always stand out – in fact, few seem to notice. Yet being different will make all the difference. Peter wrote:
Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation. 1 Peter 2:11-12 (ESV)