“I don’t think I can be a normal Christian!” she cried. My heart broke for this sweet young girl who was wrestling with questions about God and how to live out her faith. Tears streamed down her face, and she looked away with a sigh and said, “I can’t be like everyone else.”
I hugged her gently, then looked her straight in the eyes. “Listen, there’s no such thing as a ‘normal Christian,’” I told her. “We are all on our own journeys.”
We talked for a while longer about comparison, guilt, and inadequacy. At the end of the conversation, I thought about her anxiety over not being normal, and realized that I too sometimes buy into the lie that being normal is the goal.
One of my favorite quotes by Oswald Chambers is, “… let God be as original with other people as He is with you.” And if God is original with each of us, there really is no such thing as being normal when it comes to our relationship with Him.
God made us all unique. He meets us where we are, knowing full well where we’ve been, and where He intends for us to go. God never expects us to do exactly what other Christians are doing, exactly the way they’re doing it. And His relationship with each one of us is as unique as we are.
Now, God meets us where we are, but He doesn’t leave us there. There are commandments for us all to obey, and common themes we experience in life. There is one Jesus for us to follow after. And while there is no such thing as a “normal Christian,” there are some constants we can rely on.
- He loves us. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. Romans 5:8 NLT
- He is for us. What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? Romans 8:31-32 NLT
- He is with us. The righteous cry out and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all. Psalm 34:17-19 NIV
If you’ve been feeling like you have to be “normal” like every other Christian you know, take heart. Let go of the myth of normalcy, and rely on the constants of God who created you to live with freedom and unique gifts.