I’m going to start a new series of posts called “Dear Church” , this will be where I’ll put all my frustrated rants and pleadings with the members of the Christian faith I’ve left behind. This will be the first in this series.
Who Hijacked Your Faith?
If you’ve ever spent a lot of time around Christians, be they devoted or your standard backslider, it’s almost inevitable that a discussion about faith will eventually turn into someone making the claim that “Real Christians ®” would not do or say “x” – replacing “x” with whatever position they oppose and others eschew. The folks that say this often mean well but depend on the notion that their “True Faith ™ ” has been bastardized by what other Christians say and do and furthermore go on to explain why my understanding of their faith is flawed based on my experiences with these hijackers of their faith – meaning I can’t possibly make the rational or informed decision to reject that faith.
I just want to know, who hijacked your faith and what are you doing to fix it? Where did things go so wrong?
The funny thing about these situations is that I’ve heard these arguments come from every Christian viewpoint; from fundamentalist, Pentecostal, conservative, liberal, Universalist, Baptist, and even members of non-orthodox sects, and everything in between. Very few of those that lay these claims are willing to consider that perhaps they and their opposition are incorrect, but I’d be willing to say that my understanding of the Christian church in the book of Acts leaves me with the conclusion that no one denomination or position comes remotely close to what is correct if that Acts church is your standard. (But I digress)
I’m writing this because what I find more disturbing though is that there are so many good, kind, loving Christians that I know personally. They sit in churches surrounded by their opposites, people that don’t actually represent the faith they lay claim to are pastoring their churches and they sit there quietly. All around these people are loud, boisterous, angry Christians ensuring that people like myself want nothing to do with the faith or even enter into dialog with believers. Now, I don’t know if the majority are the kind and loving sort or if it’s the loud and embarrassing ones – but I know that the kind and loving are under-represented because, as we all know, the squeaky wheel gets the oil. The fact of the matter is that these good and reasonable people are either afraid to speak up for fear of persecution, or they don’t recognize the importance of fixing what they fully admit to be broken.
This letter is for you good, kind, and loving few and I hereby charge you:
If you are tired of your church using fear-mongering tactics to convert children.
If you are tired of seeing your church attempt to legislate morality.
If you are tired of seeing science ridiculed constantly by people that don’t have a clue about science.
If you are simply tired of being grouped together with bigots and hate-mongerers.
You see, I can’t fix the church from the outside – but those of you on the inside that pay tithes and donate your time to it can. You can make it known that you refuse to tolerate bigotry, hate, and fear or you can get up and walk out – never to be seen on a pew again.
You can either continue to allow people like Fred Phelps and Pat Robertson speak for you, or you can begin speaking for yourself and become the change you want to see in the church and the world. If someone hijacked your faith, please speak up.
PS. Question. Everything.