Christianity Is Suffering An Identity Crisis
Are We Doing the Best We Can?
Christianty is suffering an identity crisis. But no worries, this isn’t anything new. It’s been going on for a couple thousand years. There have always been people standing up out of the masses, and boldly saying, “I don’t like the way you’re doing this God stuff! Let’s do it this way!” And then they’d split off and start a new faction—one that made better sense to them. Maybe even killing a bunch of people in the process. Religion has historically been dangerous ground. And it’s not feeling so different these days.
After two millennia, we now have over 30,000 different Christian denominations, or factions. I doubt anyone in any of those 30K groups believe they’re doing it the wrong way. Though, logically, no one can ever claim to have it completely figured out how exactly we should be doing this God stuff. Beware of anyone who does!
People are doing things in the name of their Christianity that feel so mean—unaware of the giant disconnect between their intentions and the impact of their actions. We all agree that we want to be loving people, but we all differ greatly on what it means to actually love someone. Some shout “All Lives Matter,” not knowing how tone-deaf that sounds to the person of color looking for a safe place to go. Some believe that the ultimate loving thing they can do is save someone from eternity in hell, assuming the other person even accepts the paradigm of heaven and hell being real. Others feel like they’re loving someone by saying it’s ok to come to our church if you’re gay, but we’re sorry, you can’t work in the nursery, sing on the worship team, or heaven forbid, get married here. “Love the sinner, hate the sin” never feels like love. It’s as if we’ve never learned how people really need to be loved. (I look forward to exploring this topic more in future posts!)
I’m absolutely not saying Christianity is a bad thing—heck, I’m basing my life on it! There are a ton of world-changing things being done all over the world in the name of Christianity—relief projects, feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, providing safe havens for the abused, et al. We could all benefit from spending time touting some of the benefits of Christianity. (Another great topic to explore!)
While the culture outside the church appears to be watching how we live and how we love, I’d like to play a small part in spurring us all on to greater love and humility, which I believe will allow us to love and serve others more as God intends. And I’d love to have you join me. Let’s make this a dialogue and not just a monologue. I’d absolutely love for you to give me your feedback and insights!
If your attempt to love someone doesn’t leave them feeling loved you may be doing something wrong.
I think we’d be a lot better off as a society, especially as people of faith, if we would just admit we’re just doing the best we can in the way that seems to make the most sense to us. And then start looking at other people in the same way. Maybe every once in a while, say something like, “I might be wrong on this.” And allow other people to do their lives in the way that makes the best sense to them, instead of trying to get them to change their minds, or convert them to our particular way of doing things. The prison of trying to change people to be more the way you want them to be will never set you free, even though you hold the key to the way out.
You do you. I’ll do me. And if I can somehow lend a hand to you along the way, I’ll be right here.
(Losing Control is also available as an audiobook on Audible and Kindle e-book)