Tuesday, March 25, 2014
The Search for What is Missing in Christianity Today (aka Where the heck is the authenticity?!)
I remember going to church one Sunday, hearing the whispers from some of the members. I was a sinner. I went to the bar, and then had the audacity to show up to service. I didn't go to church for 3 months, and now all of a sudden I have the balls to show my face. I had too many children, and obviously couldn't support them, so who am I to appear in a church? I give little if anything in the offering plate - I have nothing to offer this church and shouldn't be here.
And I remember thinking... that one there was at the bar last night as well. And the night before. And the night be fore that. That one over there sleeps through church. That one spends most of the service gossiping about everyone else. Seriously? You're all going to judge me?
The Church lacked authenticity.
The fact is, we're all sinners. Church isn't for the perfect... it's for the broken. It's for the sinners. If we were perfect... well, chances are we'd already be dead and sitting in Heaven with our Lord. On earth, there are no perfect people. Unless of course Jesus has come back as a human once again to walk with us. It is entirely possible I didn't get that memo...
Once I figured out the need to push past the gossipers and self-assigned judges, I started going back to church. And this led to me blogging and sharing my experiences. And in this little online universe (as well as amongst some of the real world people I met), I found a whole new group of people...
People whom insisted that life was perfect after they were saved. They found Christ! They accepted Christ into their hearts! And now, they have no issues. Life is grand. Their physical and mental ailments were stripped from them. They now had the perfect job and perfect family and of course, they never sin now. And obviously, if your life isn't like this - if you're still sick or in pain, if your life is still in turmoil, and especially if you're still sinning - you have not truly accepted Christ yet.
Again, this lacks authenticity.
We're told in the Bible that even with Christ in our hearts, we're still sinners and we will still encounter turmoil. Our lives will not be perfect here on earth. There will still be abuse and pain and sadness. There will still be sickness and death. And we will still sin.
The more we keep pushing these lies, the less people are going to be in our pews each Sunday. The more we keep judging others, assuming they don't belong in Church because their lives aren't perfect, the hollower our Churches and hearts will be.
If you want people in your Church - Be Authentic!
If you want people in your life - Be Authentic!
If you want people to embrace Christ - Be Authentic!
If you want to be a true follower of Christ - Be Authentic!
Don't hide your own sinfulness behind a mask of perfection. Don't assign yourself judge and jury over those whom you feel aren't living up to your idea of Christianity.
Be Authentic! Put that missing piece back into Christianity in your life, your home, your Church, your community.