As difficult as it may be, it seems God is leading me to do something that I’ve been hesitant in doing for a long time. In many respects, I have been doing this slowly over time as I get frustrated and disappointed with some claiming Christianity.
I happen to live between Charleston and Columbia, South Carolina, where the recent tragedy and ensuing controversy has taken place. When I heard of the incident that Thursday morning, I braced for impact. I was pleasantly surprised at how the Charleston people came together in love, though.
I attended my Dad’s church that following Sunday for Father’s Day and was even pleasantly surprised that the pastor there humbly admitted that we, as Christians, should follow Jesus in love like was represented in Charleston. We don’t really agree on much, and he did end up tying political agenda back into his message. Nevertheless, I was given some hope that maybe Christians would wake up seeing Jesus’ love exemplified locally.
Then, the flag controversy and the Supreme Court’s decision. The tragedy and corresponding out pour of love was quickly forgotten after only a few days and now these other issues have become the platform for a couple of weeks now. How quickly love was forgotten, cast aside, and replaced by issues that would justify Christian hatred. The little hope I had in these Christians was shattered, yet again, and again I hear God’s voice saying, “Leave them alone. They are blind guides of the blind.”
I use to feel a bit hypocritical with this. I use to think I was being judgmental, and I kept giving another second chance. Now, with the latest drama, I think the last nail has been driven in that coffin. I’m now beginning to see that stubborn people that are anchoring others to a defunct religion have to be left behind if it’s their insistence. There are far too many others that are willing to embrace and be embraced in love yet can’t get past the religiosity of much of Christianity. I’m starting to see that Jesus’ call is for me to quit worrying about the stubborn Christians and instead, go to those who are seeking. I have to just trust that God will work with those stuck in their beliefs if they are willing to hear him. I have to move forward in hopes that I can further grow spiritually and show others what following Jesus in love is about.
This is not a decision I make lightly and not one I take any pleasure in making. It breaks my heart to have to completely remove such people from my life. But I trust God, and I would rather follow him in love then to be associated with the manipulation and hatred from those abusing Jesus’ name.
More and more I’m seeing why Jesus made the comments he did towards the religious people of his day. I begin to understand why he said we would have to leave many of these people behind in where he leads us.
I welcome any comments or thoughts about this as it’s something that I don’t necessarily like and have been wrestling with for a while.