The word casual popped into my mind this morning. It’s an innocuous word but it’s also a dangerous word depending on its context.

Casual can mean: not permanent, irregular, informal, unpretentious and friendly. It can also mean: easy going, free and easy and laid back.

Increasingly young couples enter into casual relationships and have casual sex. Then there is casual lying, casual infidelity and casual church attendance.

Surveys of young people’s activities are showing a casual attitude to relationships. Society tells them to live together first. Tells them, take your time and see if you like each other. Why rush into things. 

Married couples are sometimes casual about their marital vows, about sticking it out for there is always separation and divorce if you don’t get on. More and more, people enter into marriage not expecting it to be their first and last. Moreover, couples are leaving marriage later and later because of their casual approach to the institution.

Then there are those who have a casual attitude to life itself: abortions, some times multiple abortions, homicide and suicide. So much of films and television portrays life as cheap and expendable. If you are upset then take it out on others by killing as many as you can then take your own life.

Commitment to Christ and church attendance are also casual.

Some follow Christ irrespective of what the bible says. Some take the view that God is loving He will not judge them. These are they who dismiss a hell but hope to go to heaven. 

Then there are Christians that are uncommitted to a local church and there are those who move around from church to church based on their fancy at the moment. Sadly, there are also some Ministers that are casual about ministerial impropriety and even sin.

Founders as they refer to themselves, who do as they please and have no real accountability to others. These are they who even when they are caught in the wrong still hold on to power within the church. These are they that run the church as a family affair because they have a casual attitude to apostolic order and government.

The thing about being casual is it often leads to casualty.

Casualty is a place in a hospital people go to following an accident or emergency. Casualty is also a word that describes a victim or the consequence of one’s action or the action of others.

So, causal relationships can lead to heart break, bitterness, disease and unwanted pregnancy. A casual approach to marriage and the institution of marriage produces much pain, broken homes and poverty. Recently a well known British TV presenter went on tv to announce to the world he was leaving his marriage of almost 30 years because he was gay. His fellow presenters, friends and the public contacted him in support of his decision; that he was so brave to come out like this.

Neither he nor those in support of him were interested in the casualties that flowed from his decision. His wife, daughters and other family members. The insensitivity of going on tv to tell the world. He got sympathies all right from some but what about his wife and daughters. 

I am sure if he had gone on tv to say he was leaving his wife for another woman he would have been seen as heartless and pilloried for it. To go on tv when it really was no one else’s business other than himself and family was wrong.

The opposite to casual is permanent, serious and commitment to name but three things. 

There are some things and occasions when it is expedient to be casual. Dressing casual when on holiday. Being casual with one’s family and friends. Taking a casual job while still at school, during gap year and whilst waiting for permanent employment.

But, there are times one cannot be casual, for example, attending an important interview or one’s attitude to health and safety. The response to the Coronavirus disease cannot be casual this will lead to much pain and suffering. Leaders that take it seriously should be rewarded and applauded and those who are casual should be exposed and rejected by the people.

Let me end with Jesus’ warning to the Laodicean church (Rev. 3). In the message He warns against lukewarmness as well as against other things. Lukewarmness is being casual about important things like one’s love and commitment to Christ in these last days.

Our platform is the world and congregation the people.

The Lord’s servant

Lloyd Denny