Beyond Born-again Babble

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Just remember that no matter what it means to those around us being born again is not an option.

“I gave in, and admitted that God was God, and knelt and prayed: perhaps, that night, the most dejected and reluctant convert in all England.” —C.S. Lewis

In our culture today, the words “born again” are definitely a loaded phrase. Those two words have been politicized and socialized so much that to the outsider they are little more than a misunderstood cliché—a convenient label to categorize conservative Christians. If you can laugh at yourself a little, you might appreciate the irony and humor in these quotes:

“The trouble with born again Christians is that they are an even bigger pain the second time around.” —Herb Caen

“Why do born-again people so often make you wish they'd never been born the first time?” —Katherine Whitehorn

“Making fun of born-again Christians is like hunting dairy cows with a high powered rifle and scope.” —P. J. O'Rourke

“Born again?! No, I'm not. Excuse me for getting it right the first time.” —Dennis Miller

How about you? Are you embarrassed by the label? Is it just an adjective with fuzzy meaning? A cliché? Just remember that no matter what it means to those around us, Jesus said,

“You must be born again.” —John 3:7

The fact is that this “born again” thing is not an option. It wasn’t an option for C.S. Lewis who came “dejected and reluctant.” It wasn’t an option for the elite religious seekers in Jesus’ day. It’s not an option for the church-goer (or anyone) today. It’s a prerequisite for entering and seeing the Kingdom of God. 

Jesus, search my heart and show me my ways. Show me what I think and believe when I hear the words “born again.” Don’t let these words be a catch phrase, punch line, or cliché. Transform me by the renewing of my mind through the mystery and majesty of what this truly means! Amen.  

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