“In our family, we choose to live differently.”
Our kids can repeat that phrase. There are so many times when Krista and I have to explain to our kids why we are a bit odd as a family. They overhear other kids using words they’re not allowed to use. They wonder why they can’t have cell phones when other kids their age have them. They feel out of the loop when they’ve not seen some of the same movies as their peers. And we tell them, “in our family, we choose to live differently.”
It’s not that we’re trying to be strange as a family, although parts of that are unavoidable given the quirkiness of their father. We’re trying to protect the beauty of their childhood. We’re trying to raise them in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. We’re trying to instill godly patterns in our family culture. We’re not doing it perfectly, but we’re doing the best we know how.
Our kids are learning it’s okay to be different. Just because everyone else is doing it, doesn’t mean we have to do it too. Living with wisdom and godliness means we’re going to be a bit weird. To follow Jesus is to swim upstream. We’re a countercultural people. We’re alive to the New Creation. We’re citizens of heaven. We’re a people living now in light of kingdom come.
In God’s family, we choose to live differently. That’s what Ephesians 4–6 is all about. The call of Jesus means daring to be different. It means we’ll stand out from the crowd at many points. But even when we’re a bit odd, we are loved, more than we know.