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Knowing how to stop double mindedness and begin living boldly begins with really knowing what being double minded is! What makes a person double minded and what does the Bible say about it?
How to Stop Double Mindedness – First, Define It
I was reading a verse in the Book of James about being double minded that really hit home with me late last week. It was this verse:
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James 4:8 NASB
The phrase “double minded” comes from the Greek word “dipsychos” and it means uncertain, doubting. It also means divided in interest.
It means that you are wavering and divided between two interests.
Divided in interest.
It hit me pretty hard, I will be honest, and I had to face some truths about myself right here.
Have you ever posted something on Facebook and set the permissions so only certain people can see it?
On Social Media
Guilty! I have done that many a time, and sometimes it is for good reason.
Sometimes it’s just because it only pertains to certain people so I don’t want to bog down people’s newsfeeds with something that only interests a few, like maybe a family related post.
Or maybe it is super personal that I only want close friends and family to see. Those are all fairly good reasons.
But that wasn’t what bothered me.
What bothered me were the other posts I set permissions on.
I didn’t want to be judged by people who might have a wrong perception of what faith in Christ is truly about or what I represent.
Then There Was the Opposite
The funny memes or off-color posts I might think are funny so I share them but hide them from my Christian friends because I don’t want them to think I am acting in a way that is ungodly.
They weren’t BAD or anything most people would find offensive. I DO live my walk as much as possible! I just thought people might be too harsh and judge me for it. I didn’t trust people not to judge!
The makeup and fashion I love so much, I hid from my Christian friends because I feared being labeled as caring about “worldly things”.
But loving those things is NOT wrong! Making an idol out of them is wrong! Finding your worth in them is wrong.
But enjoying those things (and oh, I do) is not wrong! Enjoying them for fun is not wrong! And if anyone were to judge me for it, the issue is more with them than me!
Fear of Being Judged
Basically, I was fearing the judgment of man. So I compromised. I was being double minded.
I was portraying one “me” to one group and the other “me” to the other group and NEITHER me was bad or wrong!!
That is the odd thing about it. I don’t post anything that is ungodly or fanatical!! I was worried about someone’s perception of me versus the reality of me.
So, I tried to be one person to one group and another person to the other and the truth was somewhere in the middle.
My interests were divided. I had one set for one and another for the other!
This is Who I Am
You see, if my friends dislike me because of my faith then I don’t need those friends. Period! It sounds harsh but it is true!
My faith is who I am. If you love me as my friend, then you love me BECAUSE of my faith because that is what shapes the person I am.
If my Christian friends dislike me for my weird humor or my love of fashion or my loud-mouthed NY attitude, that’s more their issue than mine.
God didn’t make us all alike and there’s a good reason for that! We balance out the church that way!
Romans 12:4-5 says:
“For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.” NASB
We weren’t made the same! Our toes and our fingers have different functions and offer different benefits, but are all part of the same body.
Stopping Double Mindedness Starts With Trust
It really all came down to a lack of trust.
I didn’t trust my Christian friends with the weird, crazy side of me and I didn’t trust my non-Christian friends with the part that is truly ALL of me; the Christian.
I was literally living like a split personality and in the end, no one knew the real me; the WHOLE me.
I wasn’t being fake. After all, each was truly a part of who I am. But I wasn’t being real either.
Stop Double Mindedness by Living Boldly
James 1:6-8 says that a double minded man is:
“But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” NASB
How could I ever go to God and ask for anything if I live in doubt and divided in my interests? If I am blown and tossed by the winds of opinion or judgment of people, how can I ever expect God to trust me with what I am praying for?
So, I decided to live boldly! Boldly in my faith and boldly in my humor! I have decided to be the authentic ME! Take me or leave me but at least it will be the REAL me you’re getting! And what God thinks of me and who He made me to be is far more important.
Living boldly and living authentically!
If I don’t feel comfortable enough to share a post with my Christian friends, then maybe I shouldn’t be posting it!!
And if I don’t feel comfortable posting something for my non-Christian friends to see, then I need to re-examine my heart and whether I am trying to please God or man!
So how do you stop double mindedness? Live to please God, not man! Look at all you do through the lens of the Word and not the lens of friends or family.
Look at the opinion of God, not the opinions of friends on Facebook. And if you are pleasing God, then that is all that matters!
If you’ve ever experienced this fear of judgment or fear of losing popularity, comment below and let me know how you stepped out boldly yourself!
NASB – “Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. Copyright by The Lockman Foundation“