Deep down south there is no shortage of holy rolling communities preaching fire and brimstone from the pulpits. We hear that tired old line spewing from the mouths of well intended preachers… “If you died today where would you go?” It’s exhausting.
Who says this to impressionable young minds?
Who wonders why these children grow up ashamed of their actions and become scared to return for fear of ridicule?
Yet it’s so commonplace amongst Generation X and Millennials almost everyone I know can tell you the exact moment they walked away from the flock. Some would say we’re a Godless group with no real direction but my experience has taught me differently. Even the alleged agnostics we come across don’t live without belief in something greater than themselves. We all have a concept of a Higher Power.
So what happened?
A giant schism between Church goers and nonbelievers has thrown monumental walls between the two. We see intellectuals ridiculing people of faith while angry protesters wave Bibles at homosexuals. I can almost hear Ball Of Confusion by the Temptations playing in my head as I watch from the sidelines. The truth in both scenarios is obvious for anyone on the outside looking in. Some people use intellect to belittle others because some part of themselves feels inadequate. Some use their faith to separate themselves from the world. Then there’s Yeshua. He hung out with outcasts and thieves and I hear he even washed a whores feet.
A lot of the religious piety we see has absolutely nothing to do with God. Yeshua himself worked tirelessly against the religious authorities of his day who demanded people cling to rigid dogma. He urged us to love God and to love each other. He healed people on the Sabbath and chased money changers out of Temples. So if someone is gossiping about you over a cup of coffee they just bought at their Mega-Churches cafe just remember they’re human beings. Maybe it’s been a minute since they read Luke 6:37. Our job while we’re here is to love them anyways.
“Love one another. As I have loved you, so you should also love one another.”-The New Commandment
That sort of love is unconditional and can’t be taken away from anyone no matter what they do. None of us has come up with an original sin worthy of damnation in a hot minute.
So if you’re feeling disconnected just know you’re not alone. That veil tearing in the Temple as Christ died is a huge message. Nothing separates us from God. “Do you not know that you are the Temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” The grace is already yours.
“God is at home, it is we who have gone out for a walk.”-Meister Eckhart