Sunday, July 3, 2011

Follower of Christ


We went to church today. Hope is still stuck, but life won't wait for ever. The sermon started by asking why "they" were holding hands and celebrating as "they" walked down the street because "their" law passed and Christians were nowhere to be found. I missed most of the rest of the sermon because I stayed stuck right there. This quote came to mind:
I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.

Mohandis Ghandi
As I watched everybody clapping and yelling "halleluiah"  in response to the images of Christians taking to the streets to proclaim God's rejection of same sex relationships, I felt detached. Why would this image be something to celebrate? I looked around at other church members. The ones who were loudest and most in agreement are the same ones who have no tolerance for Hope. The same ones who went after MK last summer. These are the people who are sure they are going to heaven, even if nobody else is. Their love is confined to those most like them. They show no compassion. The amount of righteousness in the room was suffocating.

I came back to the sermon towards the end. The pastor was telling the people that they should proclaim what God is to them any time and any where the Spirit moves them. I was about to ask if that applied in the middle of a sermon, when my friend behind me grabbed my shoulder and told me the pastor wasn't talking to me.

He probably wasn't. Maybe followers of Christ need a new name. "Christian" seems to be already taken.

11 comments:

Mom of the Perpetually Grounded said...

The same type that judged my oldest daughter out of church and Christianity.

Children of God maybe? Even better, from my favorite word, Emmanuel's.

Mom of 5 said...

Oh this really touches on how I feel about a lot of church attendees...that is what I will call them. How are they to be so self righteous? The more I try to live my life according to what God wants, the harder it is for me to swallow. I totally understand what you are saying! I have visited many churches never to return again b/c of this. I currently love the one I go to, even though it is nothing like the one I grew up in, and my family doesn't approve.

Brande Services said...

We are Christ-Followers. Similar experiences and hurts here. I hear ya. Keep praying that God would work in their lives and open their eyes like He has in OURS!

Mothering4Money said...

And this is why I love you.

Ian & Ruby said...

I like to ask myself - where would Jesus have been? Talking to the sinners, that is where! Why do we feel that we have to be perfect to worship? That those who worship with us must show no signs of sin? Christ came to save the sinners, and I am one of them! And I know that He loves me! There are so many people who have no idea of how hard it is to parent a hurt child, and who perpetuate the hurt by their actions. God bless.

Amanda said...

That's why I only go to church when nobody is in there.

LiseyDuck said...

People like you make me see that religion can be a force for good. Over the years I've made friends with a few Christians, Muslims and observent Jews who emphasise that point. I'm unlikely to share those beliefs but can at least see where they're coming from. Sadly the majority of religious people I encountered early on in life were more like the folks from your church. Is there a different one you could go to that would be more tolerant of your kids?

fuzz said...

That is such a great quote from Ghandi. It encompasses my feelings toward many "Christians" as well. Just know - YOU are a true example of what it means to be a Christian. Giving so much of yourself, working so hard to heal those kids every day. In raising my sister (a RADling), we were often very late to Mass, causing disruptions or leaving early... because my parents chose to be selfless. They chose to accept, and love unconditionally. They chose to be true followers of Christ. Funny how imperfect real Christianity can look to those "holier-than-thou" types. :)

Medkid said...

:( I hear ya sister. To learn to be gentle with myself and to heal from long years of illness I've had to move away from the judgments of the church and towards mindfulness and loving acceptance. To learn to be less judging of others and embrace them fully in love (my best friends in med school are two amazing men who also happen to be gay) I've had to move even farther from the church and closer to the knowledge that Jesus never supported injustice. To learn to embrace ALL of my patients and some of my classmates who may be difficult to deal with I've had to rediscover a God of love FAR bigger than any church building or self righteous sermon can contain. I may be headed straight for hell according to some. But I will do so trying fiercely to love even a tiny sliver of how God loves. You are a light in the darkness for me, and I am sure many others! In choosing to raise your girls, and bravely choosing to speak about it here. Thanks for your post.

Struggling to Stand said...

I think it is great that you have a friend there who knows you well enough to know you probably needed that hand on your shoulder just then. ... I'd have needed one too.

Miz Kizzle said...

Some people are going to be in for a big surprise when they cross over to the other side.