Christian Church / Christianity / Faith / Religion / Thoughts

The Other Side of the World to me.

After an apology from one kind Christian for all the evils Christianity has done against her, she looks at him with a mixture of anger and aplomb and asks: Why don’t you just jump ship? And it’s such an honest question? If you have to apologize for it all the time. If you have to justify it. if you have to make excuses for it. If it’s so bad, why don’t you just jump ship?

That’s it I tell you, it’s unfixable.
I’m not one to give up on something I love. Even if it tears me apart. And I do love Christianity. I love talking about it. I love the barriers and the restrictions and the freedom and the fear. I love to criticize it and cling to it. I especially enjoy the fringes of it’s functionality. That opportunity to play with deciding what about it truly matters. What is the base? What is the point? but why do I keep coming back to it and thinking that it’s salvageable?

I’ve been asking myself that question for years. Sometimes I answer that it’s not the religion I love, it’s the relationship. But the relationship without the intellectualizing is a little empty. I mean, would I even be allowed to have an opinion on the religion if it I left it? Reza Aslan on FoxNews flashes in my head. He wasn’t allowed to talk about Jesus and he’s got a PhD in the history of religions and worships a religion that even believes in Jesus. Then again, if I’m looking to be justified by FoxNews for my views, I might as well just quit writing right now. So, this logic leads me to believe that I certainly can discuss the religion without being a part of it. That’s one barrier down.

Sometimes, I think that I can’t love Christ without loving Christianity. It’s like loving a teenager and hating drama… oh wait…. I can do that. I don’t have to accept everything that is remotely connected with Christ to love Him. Maybe I’m a little afraid that the drama is part of the allure. Maybe I am a little addicted to the highs and lows. Maybe I’m not ready to be stable. What if it’s not really the relationship I love, but the intellectual aspects? But if I don’t really love the relationship, letting it go should be easy, right?

Christianity is my hiding place. It expects clear things from me and though I push the boundaries out, I am safe in it. I feel like I am good at it. But is that a good reason to stay? What if I had no relationship and was starting from scratch, how would I pick a religion? Wouldn’t I choose one that matches me, that nourishes my spirit, and helps to encourage my connection with the divine? Wouldn’t I choose something healthy? But what if healthy is… I don’t know…. boring? What if healthy is no highs or lows? Is it a good thing to just sail along not feeling anything rather than feeling too much?

I digress.

I’d say I’m over labels, but that seems just so incredibly weak.

“On comes the panic light
Holding on with fingers and feelings alike
But the time has come
To move along”

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4 thoughts on “The Other Side of the World to me.

  1. Keep struggling. There are others in the churches who feel the same way and meeting them is like a water-filled cistern in a thirsty land. And who cares if inspiration does not strike often, when you can write like this when it does?

  2. I don’t know if you’re responding to a post that I wrote and we shared comments on, on my blog, but it sounds like you might be, so I’m going to answer anyway: why don’t I jump ship? Because it’s not Christianity I follow, it’s Jesus. Christianity is just a bunch of other people who also follow Jesus, and while I have many complaints with how they behave and how they treat people, they don’t define my faith. Jesus defines my faith. And everyone else is along for the ride, just like I am.

    I apologize for them because they are turning people away from Jesus, and that to me is far more deeply offensive than anything else anyone does or says.

    My blog, if you would read back to the beginning, is the documentation of a fairly epic struggle to find Jesus in spite of other Christians – certainly not because of them. And my faith has evolved greatly since I started it – there are some posts that I should repudiate, but I won’t for now because they were authentic at the time, and Christianity is all about struggling.

    • Actually it was a happy coincidence to find your blog. I found it after I wrote this. The scene at the beginning is from one of my favorite documentaries “Lord, Save us from Your Followers.” In much the same way you did, a man apologizes for all the evils of Christianity to a lesbian woman.

      Also, I think you’ll find as you re-read this blog that I am making the very same argument you are in your comment. I mean, my blog’s name is sacred struggler. šŸ˜€
      Thanks for visiting and commenting.

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