Do you feel like you’re stuck spiritually? You have your quiet times reading your Bible and praying to God, you show up at church, you talk with other disciples, and you may even share your faith. But despite all that, your life doesn’t change, and nor do the lives of those around you. You can flash an “everything’s great” smile with the best of them, acting the part of a good Christian, yet not experience the richness of the Holy Spirit living within you. What is the reason for this stagnation? You have given in to the gravitational pull of spiritual mediocrity.
Spiritual mediocrity results when you adopt sin and learn to live a life tolerant of a lack of faith, saying, “I’m not going to get any better. So, I’m going to learn how to be happy with no faith. I will conform to a life in which I will be unbelieving yet contented. I will choose to be satisfied with failure.” Many Christians are content with compromise in their lives as long as they can convince themselves that they won’t go to hell because of it. The lukewarm world has boiled everything down to, “If I’m not going to hell, then it’s all right.” This paralyzing deception keeps us comfortable in a mediocre world where we do not aspire to do great things and where we are apathetic about it.
In addition to this, mediocrity also loves company. When you settle for mediocrity, you want others around you to do the same. That’s when mediocrity becomes a culture, a lifestyle, and a threat to God’s kingdom. Even an under-achiever looks good against a backdrop of spiritual mediocrity, but being mediocre isn’t anything to celebrate. A life of comparative discipleship in which we constantly justify ourselves by looking at others sets up the kingdom for unfruitful stagnation and certain failure.
If any of the above rings true with you, it’s time for a spiritual breakthrough!
Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord, and for seven years he gave them into the hands of the Midianites.
The nation of Israel always “did it again.” If we are honest, we can all relate to the Israelites, who “again” got into sin. Do you ever feel that way? “Here I go again. I’m committing that same sin again.” Have you ever wondered why, even though you try very hard, you still find yourself “committing the same sin again”?
Gideon was part of a nation that was constantly falling back into their sinful patterns. They didn’t dare fight the Midianites because they didn’t think they could win, so they adapted.
Spiritual mediocrity results when we simply adapt to sin and a lack of faith, saying, “I’m not going to get any better. So I’m going to learn how to be happy with no faith, to be unbelieving and yet contented, to be satisfied with failure.”
Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?
Although you may feel forever entangled by the sin and weaknesses in your life, do you know what God sees when he looks at you right now? A mighty warrior. You may find that difficult to believe. But that’s a symptom of mediocrity. It loves to get down on itself. Mediocre people like to say, “Yeah, that’s another reason why I can’t help anybody. I’m a heathen with no relationship with God.” But believe it–God sees you very differently, because He sees you through the eyes of His power and His salvation! He sees that you can do something. And all He asks is that you believe it when He says to you, “I will be with you.”
A true spiritual breakthrough is one that takes place in our view of and relationship with God. A transformed perspective on God will lead us down the path of breakthrough because we will see ourselves and the world around us very differently. These breakthroughs can only be done one way. “This kind can come out only by prayer” (Mark 9:29)!