Church

       Here’s a post that will be a little different than normal. I am going to talk about me being Christian, church, and stuff of the like.
       So I grew up in an Evangelical church. Would I say I am Evangelical now? Well, I don’t think I can really say that. I went to an evangelical church from when I was 6 and until I was 17. But I really didn’t start to get serious until I was about 15 which is when I started to attend youth group.
       Well I guess I am just going to talk about my testimony and church.
       When I was 15 I started going to youth group with a friend. This friend very much enjoyed going and it was the high light every week. I felt like I got a lot out of the services and had fun with the people there. I really wasn’t much like any of the other people there, I guess because I was more innocent and raised in a more conservative manner than a lot of the other casual attendants, but I liked them.
       That summer I became a camp counselor and it was life changing and well at the time I really knew for sure I believed in God… But things got different when I was a senior. I had been a “youth leader” the previous year then just before the senior year (12th grade) my youth pastor left. And I have to say youth group was kind of uncomfortable and awkward to attend to at the church after that, especially being a youth leader too because I had to step up. Well sometime during my senior year the head pastor of the church left as well which caused my entire family to leave looking for a new church.
       I have to tell you church searching is hard, but I started going to one where a lot of my friends went to. It wasn’t the same but I still enjoyed it and I actually liked the sunday service’s better than my previous church. But after I graduated it gradually got more and more awkward to go to church. I felt bad cause I loved the sermons but a lot my friends left for college and I was either older or younger and sat alone several times which made me feel uncomfortable. Plus transportation was starting to get difficult, so I guess you can say that I stopped going.
       I hopped around with my parents but then I realized, churches are awkward. In some aspects they’re almost a joke. Like the people don’t realize they’re being hypocrits or how they are saying things that hurt people or make them feel incredibly judged. I went to sermons where the pastor would contradict himself with in the sermon. I met Christians who knew nothing about the bible and just based everything they knew with what they’re religious leader said…. This is going back in times when everyone was illiterate. Not only that but the church is saying everyone is unique and has special gifts yet I feel like everyone is pressured in the EXACT SAME WAY to act a certain way and then the very second you don’t reach what someone was expecting, they give this aura which is just incredibly uncomfortable.
       As I went through college I have to say I have never realized how cold I was towards people. And some Christians don’t seem to understand what narrowminded means… They get upset by you for labelling them. But the thing is I know so many Christians who will go up to people and basically bluntly say “you’re sinning” which is… super… hurtful to people. Or they say “I am praying for you” in a sense like “I am hoping God will show you the light.”
       With that said I decided to take a very long break from church. I am tired of seeing Christians hurting people and not even realize it all while thinking they are “following God” and “Evangelizing.”
       You might disagree with me but I think Christians are doing it wrong…. Like do they realize how they say things to people hurts them? Do they realize some of the things they do seem like jokes to others? We’re doing these traditions that aren’t even in the bible every sunday. One might say “yeah thats because its Sunday and its church” which is like the worse Christian thing to say because they also say “you should act as Christ like as you do on sundays everyday.” yet all the silly traditions they do are never mentioned in the bible. Then the second you disagree with them they make it obvious they are going to “pray for you.”
       My thing is I am tired of feeling like every little action to being judged and that I have to try and act a certain way all the time just reach ones expectations. I mean as long as you’re not messing yours or anothers life in anyway then no one should really place so many people on a high pedestal then throw them off once they are different than what they were hoping. Plus NO ONE IS PERFECT INCLUDING YOU.
       I also want to say that not having gone to church for so long I feel like its more about me and God. More personal. Its not me, God, and everyone in my church anymore which it seems to be a lot of Christians making it. I guess before I was just trying to impress people and also was just getting a lot of my relationship idea’s from other people on how to have God in your life. When its my life Gods given to ME!
       In the end I do want to find a church cause I haven’t gone in a long time. Plus I was used to a certain kind of church all my life and how I was even a year ago is way different than I am now so I guess I just want to explore whats out there and see who I really am and what God has to say to me in this new area of life. I also want to say I feel more understanding of me and MY relationship with God than ever and having not gone to church for over a year has made me stronger in my faith and less blind about it.
       And to my Christian (or whatever you do/don’t believe) I am going to apologize if this offends you. I am not apologizing for myself though because I take full pride in what I believe and I want you to know God is incredibly important to me. I am apologizing you are distracting yourself from God, the being that you say is your everything, to really be upset by something you disagree with. I am sorry you waste your time with these negative thoughts and either hurt or aggression. And if you read it this far and anything you read bothered you I guess you might be someone who I am hoping will read this blog I just want to ask, what is your relationship with God? Was it developed by your friends, church, maybe family?

And on a PS note
I am not saying I disagree with my old churches or parents or anything. I am just pointing out something I feel needs to be addressed in the church… And sorry if I worded this weird or had bad punctuation or something but also sorry if you waste time getting bothered by it.
I also really want you to watch Blue Like Jazz. It may not be the best done movie but it has a good message I think. And I whole heartedly agree with apologizing all these “Christians” have done to this world. They are not the face of Jesus and I hope you don’t judge him for them.

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One thought on “Church

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey, Keith! Thanks for sharing from your heart! I hope that a lot of people did read this and this lead to many more conversations about your relationship with God. I grew up going to church and am so thankful that I was taught how to “make my relationship my own,” but didn't realize how much there is to learn everyday.
    Jesus grew up going to synagogue and learning the teachings of the Old Testament and knew them inside and out… and then as he came into his time of ministry found a small group of people to teach and help grow in their faith. Throughout Christ's ministry he is regularly quoting scripture and he based his life and ministry on this. Knowing the Bible will initially help grow us as individuals, but we must also grow as the Body of Christ.
    When Jesus found His disciples, they were his primary group. They were his friends and his followers, however, when people saw the realness of Christ they were drawn to follow Him too. And there we see His ministry grow.
    In Acts, Paul helped lead what we would trace back as our “modern” or “westernized” church. I do think the intention was to have smaller groups for fellowship and teaching, just as Jesus did with His disciples, however it is natural that as the Word is taught and people reflect Christ others will be drawn to that group and their place of worship.
    Don't give up on the church as you see it, after all, we as the body of Christ are the church. However, to continue making a difference in your life and others by still fellowshiping and growing in your relationships with God and each other will help build the Church as God intended… It is personal, but we need fellowship with other followers of Christ to continue growing.

    I would sincerely love to continue talking with you about your thoughts on the church, etc. if you would like.

    ~Naomi (Frolic) naomitalty@gmail.com

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