Great and Unsearchable Things

Things the Lord gives me, and then I write them.

Monday, December 10, 2012

The Church Lady No Longer

     Platitudes of Christianity. This was the phrase that fell into my mind today, and worth thinking on, and seeking to hear what God is saying to us.
     While traveling through the church world, and relating with church people overtime, a sort of institutionalization creeps in, sometimes unknown to our conscious minds. We learn to say certain phrases, dress a certain way, pray a certain way, and even behave as a "Christian" is expected to, perhaps even to the point of losing our own identity.
     One of the personal desires in my own life has been to be able to relate to others and them to me in a real and true way. If I or they are having problems, we need to be able to share these with each other. If we have joys, likewise we could share those. Especially in the Body of Christ.
     I have found that while being groomed in the church system that this becomes very difficult. For one thing, seeing each other in the church foyer, sitting next to each other in pews, or even a brief coffee chat before Sunday School does not lend itself to true intimacy. How can any substance in a relationship happen there?
     With our own social survival at stake, we either succumb to "acting" like everyone else by learning the ways and means of this culture (albeit unknowingly at times) or we fight inwardly to keep ourselves intact, and appear distant or even, in some people's minds, rebellious. And those who do fight to remain themselves, are rebelling. They rebel against someone or something, in this case, churchianity, from robbing "who they are," which is not wrong, but necessary to maintain the "you" God has created.
     But, those who let themselves go, begin to say and do and look like, the church system model. What are some things that are said by church people? When asked by others how they are, they are always "blessed." If they have been sick or something else  tragic has happened, and others inquire of them, they might say things like, "Jesus has the victory," or "I'm healed in Jesus' name," or something similar. I am not mocking the truths of these "faith statements" but I am suggesting that these platitudes could possibly be used as smoke screens which prevent the people of God to truly "bear one another's burdens" or "love one another" in a real and true way, because afterall, we all should be "blessed up one side and down the other" and anything other than that can be seen as not having enough faith, or even not spiritual enough. This lends itself to not wanting to share the truth of what is going on in our lives with others.
     I'm wondering if we are trying to prove to each other that we truly know God, and He knows us, as some sort of spiritual competition?
     I know of some people that have decided to challenge this "institutional" molding, and have moved close to each other, so as they go through daily experiences, they can seek the Lord together and in a real way, get to know and love one another. As Jesus was with His disciples, they have put themselves in a geographical position to make that reality a possibility.
     Jesus wants the real and He wants the true. He doesn't want us to "act" like a Christian, but to truly be one. To become that, we must abide in Him daily. Then, out of that place, we are changed, and we don't become Christians as the word has come to mean, but we become "Christ-like." This is a far cry from many today, who have been molded and shaped into the image of what man has said they "should be." I have been and am continuing to be delivered from the years that I spent subconsciously learning these "proper" behaviors, as I walked through the church world.
     Jesus told the woman at the well that the Father is looking for those who will worship Him in Spirit and in Truth. Part of worshipping Him in Truth involves no pretenses on our part. It means having no guile, and no disguises. Open hearts and open faces before Him , with full submission and reverence to Him alone, being patterned after His image.


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