Ashamed to be Called a Christian

Sometimes, I am ashamed to call myself a Christian.  This is not because I am ashamed of God, or Christ or anything like that but rather because there are SO MANY “belief systems” here in North America who all call themselves “Christians”.  An example of this came to me again just the other day when my wife and I met a very nice person at a local store.  During our brief discussion it came out that she was also a Christian.  However, after more discussion she stated that “her religion said she shouldn’t work on the Sabbath“.  Something sounds a bit off there compared to what I believe.  Other times, I’ve had discussions with Mormons who referred to themselves as “Christians” but after some discussion it became obvious that we believed very different things.

So, my struggle has been what should I call myself when people ask what I believe?  I’m not a big fan of “labels” but how then should I respond when people ask me simple questions such as “What do YOU do?”  Since I work as a missionary at a Christian organization, that question is VERY closely linked to “What do you believe?”

Options I’m considering instead of “I’m a Christian” are…

“I’m a follower of Jesus”

“I believe in Jesus”

“I believe Jesus is God”

“I love God and I enjoy telling people about Him.”

I suppose I could always go with “I’m an evangelical Christian who believes that Jesus Christ is God incarnate” however discussion with the person may be limited after that.  😉

Am I alone in this frustration?  Have you ever struggled with that question?  I’d like to hear your thoughts.

One thought on “Ashamed to be Called a Christian

  1. Yes, I totally agree with you James! This has been a struggle for me also. In addition to the encounters you mentioned it sure doesn’t help the label of “Christian” what things have been said or done in the name of Christ by people in positions of power (ie the previous president) that only serve to give that label a bad rep.

    I think we can’t use any one label for all kinds of people, but instead need to speak in terms the people we encounter can identify with. Just like Paul says — to be all things to all people. Since actions speak louder than words, Christians need show their faith through acts of love. That will go farther than the best words. The Christian documentary film ‘Furious Love’ is very relevant I think. Highly recommended.

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