Killing Christian Hipster

Somewhere on the road of trying to find my identity in Christ I have been met with a dangerous temptation to find my identity in a new “Christian” stereotype. I’m a young adult, I live in Nashville, I sing, I’m a part of a church plant, and I think I have just enough Instagram followers to fit into this new trendy breed of believers (though I don’t have a Hebrew tattoo yet). As cliché as it may be, often my sweetest moments with Jesus are when I’m praying via Moleskin journal and hand-crafted coffee mug… all while Hillsong United and Elevation Worship blast from my iHome. Hear me out, followers of Jesus can drink good coffee and listen to good music and even have sick tattoos but if all of that was stripped away… would it change anything? I’m burdened to think that in many cases, it would. It is so easy to say we find our identity in Christ when we are truly seeking our identity in a cheap Christian brand of cool. We hide behind an identity society accepts rather than simply hiding behind Christ.

Everyone may not be making a tremendous effort at this image of Christian hipster. Some people just wake up cool. It is not a sin to be hip. My intention in writing this post is to challenge you to think about what utter surrender to Jesus Christ looks like. What if Jesus called you to kill the cool? What if Jesus called you to minister in a place where you couldn’t post Instagram photos with cute kids? What if Jesus called you to a church home where the pastor’s sermons weren’t available as podcasts? What if the body of believers Christ surrounded you with were unschooled ordinary men and not a sanctified version of Mumford and Sons? What if being a follower of Jesus meant you had less or no Twitter followers? Is Jesus really enough for you?

In scripture, I absolutely love John the Baptist and I love even more what Christ said about him. Here is the man God used to prepare the way for the Savior and the man is a freak from the wilderness. John the Baptist was not cool. And Christ Himself didn’t sound like such a trend setter either… “He grew up before Him like a young plant and like a root out of dry ground. He didn’t have an impressive form or majesty that we should look at Him, no appearance that we should desire Him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of suffering who knew what sickness was. He was like someone people turned away from; He was despised, and we didn’t value Him.” Isaiah 53:2-4 Jesus doesn’t need your cool for His kingdom. He doesn’t need us to be famous to make Himself famous. Jesus works beautifully through our brokenness and completely through our surrender.

Keep having your Bible studies at Starbucks and keep rocking those flannels, but find your identity in Christ alone. He is the only solid foundation. And when He calls you to surrender something, anything, just do it. Jesus is more than worth giving everything for.

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116 thoughts on “Killing Christian Hipster

  1. We should be more concerned about killing intense Christian self awareness than killing a trend, hipster or otherwise.

    1. I believe that’s what this article is really saying. It just uses the hipster since that’s a big way self-awareness manifests. Note the line at the end “find your identity in Christ alone.”

    2. Self-awareness is different from self-obsession.

      This article appears to be written by a self-aware person who is observing what a self-obsessed person might be struggling with.

      1. Gandhi didn’t like “our Christ. He liked the things our Christ did (heal the sick, feed the hungry), but our Christ also SAID He was the only Way, Truth and Life. He said that Hell is waiting for those who deny Him. Gandhi was like many people in our day.

        They treat Jesus like a Ken doll: Political activist Jesus; Social Revolutionary Jesus; Put the Religious into Their Place Jesus. But they don’t like the Jesus of the Bible.

  2. I just read this post and 5 Best Things About Having No AC in Your Car, and I’m loving them! Both are absolutely perfect. I would read some more of your posts right now, but I’m watching Harry Potter (heehee). I can’t wait to read more! Keep up the awesome work! 🙂

  3. Maci,
    Thank you for your post. Today, you’re called ‘hipsters’, back in my day, we were called hippies along with a few other choice words. Appreciate your thoughts on being willing to lay down our cool. We’re all ordinary and extraordinary at the same time in Christ. Thanks.

  4. Macy, I’ve been blogging about 2 1/2 years and so happy to stumble upon this post, via my daughter. You are so totally correct………..It’s all Jesus or it’s nothing. There aren’t any labels i the Bible–‘charismatic’, ‘Jesus feminist’ or even ‘evangelical’–by which to call ourselves, just ‘christian–little Christ.’ Well done!

  5. This was a very insightful read. I am still trying to find my identity in Christ and I am that hipster christian. My in laws hate the way I follow Christ only because I don’t fit their acceptances in their church. I think if we killed the cool then there would only be a few followers. I love Jesus and God but If I had to be in a place that judged me on what I wore to church and what Christian music I listened to and my views on events in today society I don’t think I could go on because that is not who I AM. God gave me trails long hard and dangerous ones to make me who I AM it’s hard to think any other way.

    1. I think more of what she meant was if you stripped it all away to God. Not a church or trend a religion but just straight God… Would you still feel the same way about him.
      Much Love,
      Alyssa 🙂

  6. Agreed. I was recently at a mega type church in Harrisburg, PA and it seems that it’s a prerequisite to be hipster…and if older metrosexual. I wonder if they would dress that way outside of christian culture…

  7. This post convicted me. As someone who’s spent basically his entire life (I’m 27) before Jesus, and some afterwards, trying to find something to define himself, this speaks out to me. Forget the superficialities of trendiness or coolness or whatever, it’s all trivial and superficial. JESUS is what is and should be enough for us. Even if we were in a situation where we had to give up everything and change our whole manner of life, Jesus would be enough.

    Thanks so much for posting this, Maci. I reblogged it on my blog Caffeine and Jesus. Stay blessed!

  8. Love this article! I also wrote a post about the importance of finding identity alone. Your words are truthful and heartfelt and very appreciated!

    Love,
    Olivia

  9. A little off topic perhaps, but here are some common things groups of “hip” christian teens do with good intentions but which make others dislike them. Filling up a coffee house or restaurant for a bible study is a big one. If I have to wait an hour to be served, can’t sit comfortably and can’t work on my paper because I am crowded out and bombarded by obnoxiously high volume levels in a place I go to relax and concentrate, I don’t walk away with a great impression of your supposedly religious exercise. In fact I assume you are there to be seen reading the bible in a “hip” location, not to actually read it. Another is the masking of controlling lifestyle choices as religious mandates. I saw a bible study group of college students at the local coffee shop last week that went to sit next to a man at the outside tables area. He was smoking a cigarette, having his coffee and reading quietly. After the group sits at the table directly next to his, one girl coughs pointedly several times then approaches him: “Sir, excuse me but we’re a college bible study group, and we’d appreciate it if you wouldn’t smoke around us. We think the body is a temple, and we don’t like to expose it to cancer.” The man handled it better than I would have. He just muttered “I’ll get out of your way then” and left. I would have told them that I was providing their temple with free incense, and they were free to move their temple inside or a few tables away, but I’ll guarantee you he will be hesitant to see young Christians as accepting, caring or approachable in the future. Also vandalism is not ok. I worked in retail for several years and had to clean restrooms often. Among other unsavory comments spray painted and Sharpied on walls, there would always be a bible verse, a cross, an ICTHUS, or holy rebuttal of some previously inscribed crudity. If you respect your message and your symbols, don’t frame them with the filth of a restroom stall and present them by devaluing other people’s property. That is just an excuse to do graffiti, and a poor one at that. Last, but not least, a Christian bumper sticker is a commitment, not an advertisement. If you can’t follow the rules of the road, avoid stumbling out of bars late at night into your car, and promise never to flip someone off while driving, then please don’t label yourself an example of Christianity. The rest of us who honor God and love our neighbors as ourselves thank you.

    1. I’m sorry that you have only seen bad or poor examples of Christianity, no one is perfect and God doesn’t expect us to be. We have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God. We are only accountable for ourselves and only God should judge other people. By no means does that make what others do right. All of your examples seem a little “nit-picky” and judgmental, you don’t know others intentions or reasons for doing things, only God does. The moment you let go of all these things bothering you about young people still learning their way in Christ is the moment you realize you were young once, too, and you can’t force people to change, they have to chose to repent and chose to follow Him the right way on their own. Don’t get so offended by things you can’t control or don’t understand. I’m not in any way condoning the actions you listed, but don’t be so harmful to a generation that needs loving guidance and good examples.

      1. Kailey, “You therefore must be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect” – Jesus. “You Cannot serve two masters” – Jesus. The Lord was completely unadorned and killed. The opposite of cool. A deadly mistake, and calling it out has nothing to do with being “nit picky”.

    2. I have to agree with you, Max, with the things you pointed out. I see them for how I believe you intended it- as a caution to young believers, not judgementally.

    3. Agree wholeheartedly with Max on these examples and I don’t find them nit-picky at all. Our witness to the world is important. No, we are not perfect, but I will never take offense at a brother or sister giving me some well thought out words of caution about my behavior and how it can be perceived by non-believers.

      1. If you think it is okay to point out flaws in teen/young believers’ behavior towards non-believers in a blog written by someone who isn’t a teen and who is acknowledging the fact that there is in a flaw in the system and how to correct it, it seems nit-picky and inappropriate to me. Especially when we need to build each other up and reach the lost instead of casting stones at our fellow believers. What this comment says to me is “No offense but..” and then they say something offensive like its supposed to be accepted.

  10. I, too, find your post incredibly timely, convicting and helpful. But on a different end of the spectrum from your other commenters: I’m the uber-not-cool Christian old-schooler, the why-can’t-we-sing-good-old-hymns-out-of-the-hymnal Christian, the I’m-soon-going-to-be-an-extinct-species-as-the-only-Christian-without-a-tattoo Christian.

    I recently (Monday) went through a sort of emotional implosion when I dropped my 6 year old son off at a local church’s version of VBS and found a giant, black-lit, neon-speckled sanctuary filled with screaming-on-the-top-of-their-lungs-1st-through-5th-graders in a rock concert with 2 dred-lokked huge-gold-chain-wearin gangsta rappers on stage screaming back in syncopated unison “THE B-I-B-L E!” Seriously? THIS is what VBS has come to? I had a long conversation with the youth pastor in charge which just made things worse in this lonely head of a member of the shrinking minority.

    As he told me I needed to take care to be “culturally relevant enough” to [reach][not alienate][beckon] the lost to hear the story of Jesus from the Holy Spirit through me, you hit the nail right on the head: my non-bra-strap-showing blouse and proper grammar and same hairstyle/color I’ve had for 20 years doesn’t make me a better Christian. My identity should be in Christ alone, not in my good posture, spelling bee trophy or best-selling-bake-sale-item-provider-ness.

    A Sara Groves song or two come to mind:

    OK that’s more than 1 or 2, but Sara really nails this topic of Jesus in the center versus myself. Ouch. Hurts so good, Sara.

    Like you said, “some people just wake up this [nerdy]”. I don’t have to try too hard to be what people in the 50’s thought was the girl they wanted their son to marry (flawed in so many ways I’ve that I’ve successfully covered up with eyelet pinafores). Maybe this (gesturing toward tragically uncool self) is the “culture” of people I’m called to “outreach” to. But whether I stay this straight-laced or loosen up beyond the edge of my comfort zone, I need NOT take refuge in my “culture” as the be-all of the life God wants me to lead, and rather to do what he’s called me to do: glorify Him and help spread His love and grace and mercy. For real.

    1. Yep, I had a conversation with the youth pastor at the church we just left about secular music. They were playing 100% secular music while the kids were coming in, did 3 worship songs, then performed a secular music song. Then after the service, more secular music. Never once did they play any christian music. All in the name of “being relevant”. Guess what people, the Word of God was relevant thousands of years ago and it is still relevant today. We don’t need music written by Satan to spread the Gospel.

  11. Maci, awesome article! I used to be apart of a internship (mission) that put an emphasis on finding your identity in Christ. I have, unfortunately, not heard of anyone else that puts an emphasis on “finding your identity in Christ.” Its nice to hear of someone that is choosing to write about positive and life changing things! Can’t wait to read the rest of your blogs.

  12. This. Is. What’s. Up. And you killed it! This truth will be hard for some to hear, but it doesn’t stop it from being truth. I have struggled with this image and other Christian stereotypes. Seems I don’t fit any of them and have had a hard time finding community because of it. But I’m so blessed to have you point out the same feelings I have around this image worshipping issue and to reference how Christ himself was viewed by people, yet you didn’t demand people to change. You just provided an opportunity. This post was absolutely refreshing. Thank you.

  13. I think Jesus had it pretty well nailed when he told that rich young ruler to leave it all behind and follow him. The Rich young ruler found that edict a bit too stringent and he’s never been alone. He was probably hip though, maybe he had a hand thrown pottery mug and a moleskin Bible, I dunno. Probably not the tattoo. I’ve been a Christian for a lot of years. That certainly does not make me any kind of expert on anything, but something that find a little more understanding in every day in that those lilies of the field, they know what’s up.

  14. This article was written and posted while Christians are being killed by Muslims around the world. Now maybe you wrote about that yesterday or some other time…. But seriously, why did you write this today? This article should have no place… Nashville? hipsters, coffee? Who cares about where some Christians are, how they dress, and what they drink and the music they like? I care about babies being aborted and fellow Christians being killed… You seriously have time to think about the fluff?

    1. How is it “fluff” for her to ask: “Is Jesus really enough for you?” It’s a challenging question for those who surround themselves with the trappings of the world and think that it represents Christian piousness. Seriously, why are you being so rude?

    2. I understand your intent. However, by that same logic, you are just as guilty for taking the time to read and reply to such “fluff” while all those other things are going on. While it is unfortunate that our brothers and sisters are killed for what they believe, we all understand the risks as much as the followers of old. These types of things are important since it deals with people’s personal relationship with God. How can we expect to go out in the world and do the work He has set for us if our fundamental relationship with God is corrupt and unsound?

    3. I’m going to have to say that anyone speaking about a personal relationship with Christ isn’t writing fluff. (My opinion). This may not have meant anything to you but it might have to someone! Writing this article on the day she wrote it doesn’t mean that she doesn’t care about other Christians being killed. There is no better time to write something down than when The Lord puts it on your heart. Who are we to discount someone’s feelings!

  15. This sounds like a version of what my Pastor wrote in his book Suburbianity. Byron Yawn (Nashvillian, or as he calls it, Nashvagas). What we consider good, Christian living is just suburban lifestyle (Suburbianity), which any unregenerate could attain and live by, and many of them do. The sad part is, we assume the gospel in their lives.

  16. Yeah because everyone listens to the homeless guy preaching on the side of road! I understand this was meant to be helpful, but you’re a little misguided. It sounds like you’re upset that being a hipster in the church community is considered “cool” now, and the whole Nashville country scene isn’t. Who cares what is cool or what people wear if they are believers and are spreading the Word? This was just a silly article, and rely doesn’t make a lot of sense

    1. Jesus was a homeless guy preaching on the side of the road.

      I definitely agree that we should take care to not alienate our cultures, but it is far more of a temptation for most of us to idolize them, and (by extension) ourselves.

  17. Thank you for the post. I will share it with my people here in Russia. God bless you as you continue to follow Him with your whole life.

  18. I gave my whole self, body, mind and spirit to the Lord while I was at a Christian college. My parents were on the brink of divorce, my mom was becoming more and more radically fundamental while being the most judgmental person I’d ever met. I didn’t have the best of health. I worried about the souls of my family. After some great messages on the subject, I prayed that God use me–completely. I wouldn’t hold anything back. I finished school 5 credits short of being able to march with my graduating class. I married my husband that summer and became more and more ill.

    Dh thankfully had a great job, so we had good insurance, but my continuing health issues cost us a huge amount of money. Dh married me knowing I could not have children. What he didn’t expect was for me to have a stroke at 26, then continue to slide further into serious health issues. We thought we were in a good church. We spent all our free time helping with a church plant. When I got ill, my faith was questioned. People wanted to know what we’d done wrong to be punished by God so severely.

    The people who were our spiritual leaders/and also close family rubbed our childlessness in our faces, kicked us out of their church and only contact us when they want something. We had to move to another state and thought we found another great church–until I was used as an example of God’s punishment towards slackers and those who don’t warm the pew every time the door was open–and the fact I didn’t believe in wearing a hat. Again, the friends and Christians leaders we thought were there for us weren’t. Lather. Rinse.Repeat.

    My dh has also had serious health issues. We are no longer in a church—dh works and collapses completely exhausted every weekend, and I am so ill with a disease that will kill me within the next 3-10 years that I can’t even get to the grocery store.

    If that weren’t enough, my darling father died 3 weeks after we moved back to my home state after dh got his dream job and my mom begged me to move back so she could take care of me. Instead of support, she bickered with my stepmom over my dad’s estate and was horrible to her and me. She insisted that my father went to hell. I was diagnosed with an MS type neurological disease and spent over a year in a deep,dark abyss due to my grief and the chemical imbalances from my neurological disease. The only people that were really there for me was my husband and my MIL.

    I’m sure at this point that you’re thinking that we threw in the towel and gave up. Nope. Jesus isn’t just *enough*. He is everything you need and more. There is a peace which passes all understanding and shines through you like a lighthouse during a stormy, raging night at sea. People see this and want to know why you’re different. Why you keep getting up morning after morning and don’t just kill yourself. Christ. All my strength comes from Christ. My ability to keep my sense of humour and find the beauty and joy in the world comes from Christ. My wonderful relationship with my darling husband that never, ever, complains about having to work long hours as well as do household chores because I am unable–Christ is the foundation as well. People comment on our relationship. They want a marriage like ours.

    We are nothing special. We have lived that Christ is alone. He will never leave you or forsake you. He will never have a bad day and be snappy. He will never judge you for not going to church when He hasn’t given you the strength to go. He will never question if you’re truly a Christian because you don’t have all the “trappings” of suburbia.

    It’s easy to say that Christ is enough when you’re sitting in your air conditioned church with your friends and your life is what you wanted it to be. It’s when there are trials that test your resolve that you will be able to say with all honesty Christ is enough. Just Christ. Just as I am–stripped of your social ranking, designer clothes, perfect family, admiration for doing it all at church and work and in the community. Just as I am–stripped of my health through no fault of my own, stripped of most of my relationships because nobody knows how to deal with the grieving, the mentally ill, the rawness of sleepless nights, and constant pain. Stripped of so many little pleasures in life. When it’s just you and God sitting in that black hole that Satan so delights to see us in–to kick us when we’re down. Hoping I’ll pick up my father’s service pistol and blow my brains out—anything to make the pain stop. To be at the very bottom. Is Christ enough then?

    Yes. Not only will he be there when nobody else can completely understand, Christ will not only bring you out of the pit, He will have you rise up on eagle’s wings, to run and not be weary– an amazing promise for a girl who has never been able to run because of her heart. Christ is who judges me, not my fellow man.

    My job is to be an ambassador of His. To tell the world what He did for me. Not just saving me from my sins, but fixing my life. On the outside, my life may look broken to you. But I have so many spiritual blessings–and I wouldn’t change my life for all the riches in the universe.

    I am still struggling, but I know where I am headed and I know who controls my life.

    Please don’t be one of those poor Christians that get to the end of their lives and might have prospered so much physically and socially–even considered by many to be an excellent Christian role model, but deep inside their spirits are so disease ridden and malnourished that they realize that they’ve squandered their lives for nothing.

    1. “Trying to be a Mary not a Martha”, your comment tugs at my heart for two reasons. One is that I can relate to your circumstances very much. I, too, am isolating ill and have been for many years. I am unable to attend church because of these health challenges. My husband and I have had to leave home to find medical help since it’s not readily available. There’s a lot of pain involved, both physically and emotionally. I have also experienced the loss of Christian support because others don’t know how to help so stay away for the most part.

      But it’s the second reason that tugs on my heart in such an encouraging way. It’s your resolve to trust Jesus! I so appreciate reading this article today as I know Macy’s points are needed to be addressed by all of us. Yet, I am so touched by your personal story, “Mary”, as it has brought me to this moment of like-mindedness with another suffering soul who just wants to know Jesus and Him crucified every single day. I pray that the Lord will bless you with His loving arms in a hug from me. Blessings to you, “Mary” and blessings to you, Macy.

  19. The most challenging thought to me is why am I doing what I’m doing? Why am I hosting a Bible study in a local coffee shop? Why am I posting my devos on Insta? etc. If it’s just to fit the fad, that’s not the correct motives and enable, as you hinted at, an atmosphere-induced and self-promoted faith rather than a true, real faith that could last through anything. Thanks for the challenge!

  20. I’m a 38 year old christian male that doesn’t fit into the hipster scene. I start conversations with strangers, look then in the eye, don’t stare at my iPhone mindlessly in the church lobby, don’t fit in skinny jeans, and the craziest thing of all…I smile. Sorry 18-28 year olds, but your “cool Jesus look” wouldn’t fare well in the mission field.

  21. A young middle school intern preached this Sunday to our youth group about standing out in our walk with God. He first begins by having everyone “take a knee” and bow in prayer to our awesome God, because He deserves that kind of respect. It always amazes me when he asks that of the kids, not a single grumble arises. Then he goes on about standing out in our faith. He based his sermon on how Noah stood out in his time as a man that “…walked with God”. Genesis 6:9. Remember how Noah was basically a freak to the rest of the world? He built an ark when it had never rained before! They all mocked him, yet he obeyed God. He didn’t blend in with the rest of the world, he stood out, not because he was cool, good looking, rich, wore the right clothes or drank the latest brand of coffee, but because he followed God’s plans. Following God’s lead takes courage, it means being mocked, scorned, even abused. Are we willing to stand out in that way for God? Not blend in with the rest of the world, but as followers of Christ, be obedient in Him? What a great reminder, that we stand out because God is worthy to walk with. You have written that we, “find our identity in Christ”, but it all boils down to whether we walk with Him or not. Do we walk worthy of His name? Do we walk in His righteousness? Do we walk in truth? Do we walk in forgiveness? Do we walk in love? Do we walk humbly with our God? Are we following His will for our lives? When we follow Him in obedience, the world.will take notice, we will stand out because we have His love and light in us. We’ll stand out because of Him. A few years ago, He changed the course of my life by requiring me to go into the middle school ministry. I was happy as a choir member for fourteen years in my very substantial church. Too happy, my entire identity was wrapped up in that ministry. But God had other plans for me, he told me to “Go”, I said. “Who me? I’m fine, I’m choir, leave me alone, thank you.” He kept bugging me, “Go, go and be with the girls on Wednesdays.” “What? But choir rehearsal is on Wednesdays”, said I. “Go”, said God. So I went, never looking back. Even though I had never imagined doing anything but choir, God had other plans. Even though I never felt smart enough or equipped to be a youth worker, God said, “I will give you the words, trust Me, go.” He kept His promise, he equipped me, He has stretched my faith in ways unimaginable! He has made me a small group leader, a mentor, camp counselor a missionary. He has taken me on trips to Magic Mountain as a chaperone, screaming at the top of my lungs with 8th grade girls, holding on for dear life in roller coasters that I NEVER wanted to go on! And loved every minute of it! He has taken me out of my comfort zone so many times during this journey. Into the heart of LA on Skid Row serving the homeless. At winter camp, summer camp, service projects, food drives, concerts, events, games, beach days, Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm, Dye Wars! So many more! But at the center of it all is Jesus. Sharing His love, Word and life with middle school kids that need to know Him so badly! So, as a Christ follower, I find my identity in Him AND I stand out in the world, as a youth worker, walking with my God. Am I loud? At times, but it is because I am so excited to be where God has taken me…in the midst of screaming, silly, crazy, lovable middle school kids that just want to find their identity. God is so good, He knew what I needed to do to find my identity, and now He is using me to help kids find theirs in Him!

  22. I think this post is encouraging, helpful, and timely…. though it’d be timely at almost any point in America’s history 😉 Just swap out “hipster” with whatever the culturally valuable thing is at the time. As a new (8yrs) husband and father, it’s been difficult to learn that my life is actually the easiest thing to give for my family/God… it’s giving up TV that’s asking too much. For some guys it’s the golf game, the project car, the extra hours to impress the boss, the nice watch, or the Xbox. Give my life? Sure! But not the fishing trips!

    It’s the same with this new trend toward valuing a particular cultural identity: Hipster, ‘Merica, SuperWhoLockian, Nerd, Bro, Runner, Homeschooler, Crunchy, Soccer Mom, etc.

    If God asked you to move to a town with only one church… and that church didn’t have a praise band, would you be obedient?

    Is there anything that you would not give up? It’s probably an idol.

  23. THANKS FOR THIS…. REMINDED ME OF 1 SAMUEL 16:7. I DON’T HAVE ONE OUNCE OF COOL… BUT I HAVE A DESIRE TO BE AFTER HIS OWN HEART. KEEP ON KEEPIN ON LOVE TO READ TRUTH!

  24. I absolutely love this, it is so spot on! “Jesus doesn’t need your cool for his kingdom” is so true! Wonderful

  25. great article. identity in Christ alone baby. you could’ve displayed your message without making hipsters seem like bad guys though. when you made it seem like you were bashing hipsters (even though you weren’t), you shut the door for any hipster to hear your message and learn from it. All they heard was “hipsters are bad”. try to rewrite it without offending anyone, cuz its a beautiful message. you got your head on straight, girl

  26. Maci,
    I find your post alarming for a couple of reasons…but namely. Why are you catagorizing yourself in the first place? Why are you trying to find an identity. Just be yourself. And that goes for anyone, christians or not..just be yourselves. Also maci, in your writting theres a certain lack of maturity. I dont know how old you are…maybe in your teens…dont know. But anyway, its true that we have a personal relationship with christ, but this is a spiritual journey that needs to be accompanied with much prayer and much fasting. Christ set the example for this, and if we are his disiples we ought to do the same. Having a prayer journal is great, but spending time with god in prayer on your knees is better. Praying through to the spirit. Anything that says we dont need this form of maintenence in our spiritual lives is but a symptom of our pride, and that pride must die. Spend time in real, honest, and earnest prayer. It was not beneath christ to do so, we ought to do the same. You will grow greatly if you do so.

    Also *RESEARCH* john the baptist wore a typical form of dress for those that lived in the desert. His form of dress and even ministry was influnced by a judaic mystic cult called the Essenes. Check it out. if youre going to run a blog, reasearch is important.

  27. Okay, nice article and all, but if you think that Instagram, Mumford and Sons, Hillsong United, and coffee are “hipster,” then you need to get a reality check, and I mean that in the nicest way. None of the things you listed qualify as “hipster,” and frankly, it’s really annoying how everybody thinks super obvious things are now classified as “hipster” because they are not. And I’m sorry if you would consider yourself one, because that is just not the case.

    1. It doesn’t matter if you’re a hipster or not. If you connect yourself to Christianity, but still act like a jerk, your religion is pointless. I think the point of this blog is to not connect your identity to other images/fads other than God and anything less is superficial, unsatisfying and turns people off from God. Those shallow vibes are toxic. A sure sign of valuing an image whether it’s portrayed correctly or not is the way someone becomes offended by another’s opinion. Any secure believer would just shrugg it off and continue being themselves because they know their integrity and identity is in Christ.

  28. Thank you! I’m not going to lie, I stopped going to church and my youth groups a while ago because I was so fed up with the “stereotype” and “hipster, cool way of being Christian” and Jesus being so lost and absent in it all. I felt like everything was a show. It’s a shame. I’ve been living a Christian life with non Christians around me for a few years now, relying on Jesus all the time, but also falling into some “non Christian ways of life”. The Hipster thing isnt just about clothes and materialistic goods, its also having to do with living the “perfect sinless life”. I’ve made a lot of mistakes and when i do I NEVER feel comfortable talking to my Christian friends about it. I feel as if I’d be more judged by them than my non Christian friends which is heartachingly true! I think many Christians could value from one of the versus I live by that reminds me that my “coolness” or all my problems are NOT as important than other people, their feelings, their heartaches, and most of all Jesus!… “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom” Proverbs 11:1…. enjoy your journey!

  29. What a great, thoughtful article – and can be applied across the board to those outside characteristics that we allow to overtake our true identity. My favorite line? What if Jesus calls you to kill the cool?

  30. I’m sorry, but this is just the silliest post I’ve read written by a Christian. And this is coming from someone who has a blog. As if there aren’t 80,000 other Christian bloggers. People can wear what they want. Sorry technology has advanced and made it easier to spread the word and socialize with other Christians. I see no reason you should see anything wrong with that either. Sounds more like you just want to be above these other hipster Christians. I suppose Jesus would have a problem with christianmingle too. Lol

  31. Maci– I really enjoyed your blog! It is thought-provoking and encourages the Christian reader to consider what is really important when it comes to faith. Personally, I do identify as a “hipster”– I like my flannels and independent bookstores and local coffee bars– but the beautiful thing is that I have connected with others through our common interest, and bonded through our common faith. Being a college student, these aren’t the type of relationships most people have at this age, and certainly not what I expected to find during my time as an undergrad, but I feel SO blessed to have these friends! That being said, it is important to remember that God does not care that I wear editor glasses or if my water bottle has stickers on it! Thank you 🙂

  32. I guess I don’t understand. If I covered myself with tattoos had 2 inch gauged ears and a septum piercing. Would that make God love me less? Probably not considering he says he loves sis unconditionally. And do I love my Papa God less because I wear “weird clothes” and have holes in my ears? No. I love him with all of my heart! He loves us for us! I mean he made every single one of us in his image (:

  33. Sounds like most of the Acts 29 churches. Having been a member of The Village Church – Dallas Campus (Matt Chandler) this article is dead on. Wonder what would happen to The Village if Matt (who is a great Pastor and considered cool) was not there and the cool looking young folks weren’t attending. Would they find another church, would their walk suffer?

  34. I live in the San Francisco Bay Area where Christians are a small minority. If some Christians are hipsters, that may help translate the gospel to people who would otherwise stereotype it into the apple-pie-American cultures & be turned off. Where we live, being a Christian is more of a survival-mode where we cling to each other because we are so few. Being a hipster can help offset preconceived notions the liberal culture has of “born agains” and allow them to see Christians as more varieties of people than “conservative straight laced” people. This is not a black and white issue that has right and wrong answers.

    1. All youth cultures are, more or less, value systems. Christianity is a value system. So what we end up with “hipster Christianity” is usually a diluted foreign value system using Christian names and Christian niceties transformed by political correctness. Forget sin, forget salvation, forget that the system of this world is doomed. Instead be mellow, be accepting, be inclusive, be alternative, have your share in the cult of the self.

  35. Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.(Matthew 16:24)

  36. I absolutely enjoyed reading this!!!!! You know it made me sit back and think about my own self and why I do the things I do for Christ, because it is true Jesus doesn’t need us to make Him known He needs us to love Him and seek Him and when we do that truly people will see Him through us. I loved this post!!!

  37. Thank you so much for this. As a teen who constantly struggles with this I found this and all your other post to be really touching. This is basically my life in a blog. I relate to everything you write. I see God using you to minister to others through this and I feel so blessed to be able to have found this and use it to get through life. Thank you!

  38. I don’t think Christianity was ever “hipster” in the first place. I mean it’s the world’s biggest religion, with about 2.1 billion followers worldwide. If anything Christianity is a very mainstream religion

  39. I agree with you about being real and finding your identity in Christ…I’m wondering why you singled out “hipsters” though? This message is for everyone regardless of “style”. How you dress, tattoos, or lack of tattoos doesn’t matter to God and shouldn’t matter to us…but you are specifically pointing the finger at “hipsters”. Being real and relevant doesn’t have to be wrong, in fact it can be God glorifying!

    It’s a heart issue not a “style” issue!

  40. Reblogged this on laurajscott and commented:
    This is brilliant. So tired of this new “Hipster Christian” trend, but in explaining this to others I seem to land my self in a difficult position, being told that I am not to judge, and I don’t know what kind of relationship people have with God, so I can’t judge their faith based on their image. But this explains why it’s so dangerous to act that way, and why I am so bothered by this new trend.

  41. Having come from a Mega Church in Florida, to now attending a small Country Church in Georgia. I can understand her thinking. But I don’t completely agree with everything Maci said. Yes we should find our identity in Christ alone. For some though (like my self) we need the worship bands, the coffee house bible studies. It’s was in a Mega Church where I truly found Christ and his love. It was there that when I became pregnant out of wedlock. I was not shunned or judged. Instead I was prayed over for the health of the baby, for God’s love, grace, and forgiveness. It’s was in the Mega church where I saw more city outreach, more mission trips, and so much more.

    I grew up in a small town church, where if your parents didn’t have the right amount of money. If you didn’t wear the right clothes, didn’t hang with the right group of people. You where not in the “cool” group. It was in that church that I began to dislike being a christian, I began to hate the people it represented. Later on down the road when I was 18 and got pregnant in my senior year of high school, it was another small town church that shunned me for being pregnant. It was in that church, that made a young women felt like she was an outcast. All while the other teenage kids, where doing so much more then I.

    It was Easter Sunday 2008, in a Mega Church among the “hipsters” that I was shown Christ love for the first time. It was among the modern dressed, tattooed up Christians that made me fill welcomed. Made me fill like I could find my identity in Christ and not in material possessions. It was there that I found my calling and was able to do my calling. With out having to worry about if I had “church clothes”. It was amongst those people that I felt more connected to God, where I could worship freely. Among the Mega Church, where I had my coffee house bible groups, I had my devo groups, and women of God who encouraged me to go after my calling.

    Now that I live in the backwoods of GA and attending a small Country Church. I find myself not likening the traditional hymns, the busy bodies of the church, the people who think it’s about the clothes you have on. No matter how much I try, I don’t seem to feel like I can freely do my calling. You see I was called to the children’s ministry, for which I love greatly. Where I was once able to take encouragement from senior leaders for my calling. I can no longer take encouragement, because I was told there was no need to have a children ministry. It’s in this church that I find more opposition for wanting to reach the children of our community.

    So you see I would rather be among the “hipsters” where I saw more of Christ love. Where you are encouraged to find your identity in Christ. Instead of being politely to just do what your told.

  42. love it. can personally attest to this being a relevant issue. at one point, I definitely found myself defining myself by my “hipster christian”-ness rather than by Jesus. once i realized what was happening, it left me confused, and it took time to find my way back to genuine faith– not associated with any christian clique. now, i still love cool insta posts and flannels, but i know that even when my photo feed is subpar and my outfit is not on point, JESUS STILL LOVES ME! it’s not about the image, it’s about the relationship. and a personal relationship with Jesus is always cool, no matter what.

  43. Kinda crazy that there’s a dialogue in the Western world about whether we’re ‘cool’ as Christians or not, whereas in Iraq, they’re ‘Killing Christians’. Period. Wonder if the Christian cool would be enough in that situation, or if authentic faith in a real and living God and assurance of salvation would be what gets them through. Good yarn.

  44. Excellent points… What bothers many people about the “Christian” version of “cool” is the sense that believers are secretly emulating things they openly decry, and copying the world badly, I might add. Pastors in Ed Hardy, tight jeans, and 400.00 Italian slip ons might not be a sin against God, but it definitely is a sin against fashion. Christians? Stop trying to adopt mysterious versions of hipness in the name of relevance. Ironically, when you’re trying to be someone other than you, you’re anything but.

  45. I suggest that the Christian hipster movement is a reflection of the sad state of protestantism. The fastest growth of Catholicism is in the south. People want to be Baptised. They believe Jesus when he says, “You must eat the real food” found in John Chapter 6. Protestants are sick and tired of every church, even in the same denomination teaching something different. If you believe in the biblical account of Pentecost. You will find nothing resembling Protestantism at Pentecost. If you are a protestant, you owe your form of Christian identity to Oliver Cromwell and the Act of English Suppression. If you have never heard of these things, I suggest you look them up.

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