Fools for Christ: Do Not Conform

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

(Romans 12:2)

There’s fashion in thought as well as in clothing, and the current fashion is for individualism: take care of yourself, acquire as much wealth as you can, buy the latest smartphone or gadget or car. Any other way of looking at life is naïve at best and foolish at worst.

The cultural fashion in St. Paul’s day wasn’t significantly different from ours. The early Church found itself in an unequal society in which wealthy people owned slaves and poor people died of hunger and exposure. St. Paul looked at the greed and self-absorption of his time and in letter after letter urged Christians to do better, to be better, to be different. Why? Because they have had their minds renewed in, and by, Christ.

Not conforming to the culture around you is difficult. It means doing what’s unexpected. It means modeling yourself, not on Hollywood or Wall Street, but on Jesus, and St. Paul, and the saints. It means foolishly rejecting everything society tells you is good, and embracing something else: generosity, love, forgiveness, and kindness.

St. Paul may be on to something here. How can you be a fool for Christ today?

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