My perception on Christianity today comes from reading the following Bible verses.
Whoever does not persevere and carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.
28For which of you, wishing to build a farm building, does not first sit down and calculate the cost whether he has sufficient means to finish it?
29Otherwise, when he has laid the foundation and is unable to complete the building, all who see it will begin to mock and jeer at him,
30Saying, This man began to build and was not able to finish.
My thoughts after the jump.
Christianity in a sense, is not a one time event. Being saved is, but following God is not. Confessing our sin before God, asking him to forgive us, and askin ghim to be our Lord, while in some ways can be difficult, is really the easy part of the Christian life. The difficult part comes in then living for God, day in and day out. The difficult part comes in bearing our cross daily. What does "bearing our cross daily" mean? To an extent I think it means that we can expect similar hardships as Christ: rejection, ridicule, loss, and in extreme cases, loss of life. But I think the deeper meaning is that we are supposed to every day choose to die to ourselves. We are supposed to die to our own flesh so that we can live in Christ. This is something that has to be decided on every day of our lives, and we must persevere, finishing to the end (end of our life). If we don't persevere, if we don't pick up that cross daily, then we aren't finishing what we have started. Other people will see us and say, "See, he couldn't finish what he started. He couldn't keep up this Christian lifestyle. He blew it." It opens us to ridicule, but worse yet, it opens God to ridicule, because the outsider will see our "religion" as weak and meaningless. So God tells us to persevere, finish strong what we started, so that we won't be subject to that ridicule, and others can't say, "He's just like everybody else," but rather say, "Wow, His God really made a difference in his life."