Here's a strange question: When was the last time you made someone feel uncomfortable? "Why would I ever want to make someone feel that way?" you might be inclined to respond. "I'm a Christian. I want to make people feel welcomed, loved and accepted." That is certainly a true and noble sentiment but making others comfortable is not your primary role as a Christian.

When I am in my home, I am often most comfortable: my rules, my life, my space. I only experience discomfort when I travel outside of my comfort zones. It is my observation that many Christians live comfortably in a culture that should cause great discomfort. Perhaps the current condition causes no alarm?

Second Corinthians 6:14 (ESV) asks the reader: "What fellowship has light with darkness?" Scripture demonstrates that there are two opposing forces at work in the heart of all people—wickedness and righteousness. These forces demonstrate themselves in a variety of ways; some through faithful commitment to God and others through sinful shortcomings.

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Only by living in opposition to the current of culture can one resist and influence radical change. It is that resistance—living out of sync with the patterns of this world—that will, undoubtedly, create aggravation, discomfort and even division.

When I reflect on the life and ministry of Jesus, it would seem between His parables, teachings and miracles, He made many people feel very uncomfortable. His ministry was one that consisted of great agitation to be honest. Crowds were stirred and divided. Some people were driven to repentance while others to anger.

When I think of the word agitation, I do not hear a negative connotation; rather, I think about the agitator in a washing machine. It is this long tube in the wash basin that stirs up clothing and helps get them clean.

Jesus' ministry was one of agitation and aggravation because there was confrontation. He often made people uncomfortable because sin was confronted. Jesus, the agitator, wanted to lead people to new life in Him that they might be clean.

Stirring up culture will only happen when believers leave their comfort zones and engage around them. I am not suggesting Christians pick fights and irritate people but I do believe we can. By nature, our presence ought to stir the pot and change the environment. Might I remind you, the purpose of "stirring the pot" is to circulate the goodness of the soup.

Consider, the many unpleasant processes that bring about pleasing results, whether demolishing a structure, working out or persevering through school, often agitation is necessary. Perhaps the many Christians are not as effective as they could be, because they tolerate rather than agitate.

Perhaps we do not stir others because we've resorted to pacifism when it comes to sin. Let's flip the dialogue—no longer hiding uncomfortably from culture, let's make the darkness feel uncomfortable and be a light that agitates and disperses sin. I will not apologize that the Holy Spirit can both comfort and convict; and conviction can be a little uncomfortable.

Aaron Rios is a worship artist, author and pastor residing in New England with a contagious passion for encouraging, equipping and inspiring believers to pursue their kingdom destinies for the cause of Christ.

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