Sick of Church?

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Why are people burnt out on church?

People at churches often seem sober, ungrateful, and lacking vitality. In an attempt to be free of “worldly”attitudes, the Church has isolated it’s self in a doctrine of self denial and superfluous pomp. If Christians want to live like Christ, they must be willing to be friendly, loud, hopeful, revolutionary, subversive, and most importantly committed to love and serve radically and daily. But, we can not love like Christ if we are busy dying.

When the scripture says to die to our-selves, I believe that what it really means is not to deny our selves life, or to try to be something we are not (for Gods plan is repair and reconcile nature), but to instead let the everlasting life given by Gods plan and Christ’s sacrifice, grow and manifest in us until it burst forth and spills over into our entire life. There is no step-by-step process to becoming “the perfect Christian.”

But, when we let Christ live, we die for each other, which is really what it is all about. Being willing to make someone elses day a little bit better, even if it makes your own a little harder, being patient when your best friend’s son just destroyed a patch of wall with finger paint, opening a door for the person behind you at Starbucks, letting that SUV merge in a traffic jam even though they clearly cheated by pulling to the front of the lane next to you, having a beer with that lonely guy at the local bar, even though you are beat and just want to be alone. Being nice is a highly underrated skill.

So why aren’t we as Christians nicer? Is it because we perceive others as judging us? Is it because we are judging them? The way they wear their hair, the people they hang out with, the books they read? Who knows, but one reason I see, is that there has been a long and silent undertone of condemnation for those who gladly enjoy being a part of the world in which we live. It may be true, in some way or another, that people either view earth as a window to haven or a window to hell.

This attitude of wanting to be somewhere else is a huge problem when paired with the need for people willing to live a life of servitude. See here is the thing, we aren’t slaves, we are volunteers. And happy people make terrible slaves but wonderful volunteers. They are nicer, more willing to help, less resentful, have a deeper sense of meaning in life, and most importantly, happy people make life more fun for everyone around them. Life should be fun. It was fun in the beginning, so if we are trying to get back to the garden of Eden, we need to build the garden of Eden. It starts with attitude.

We shouldn’t make the mistake of thinking that Christ didn’t smile, laugh, spew wine out his nose, skip, make fart noises, or pass notes in school. He was human, he enjoyed life. He must have, otherwise he would not have pleaded to his father to let him keep it. But here is the thing, Jesus was not out living to die. Jesus died so that we could live and continue the revolution and restoration.

So stop dying, start being nicer. Oh, and spew wine out your nose once or twice.


One thought on “Sick of Church?

  1. I’m completely willing to champion your call for niceness, and throw all of my limited resources and connections behind it, but I just have one little complication:

    …letting that SUV merge in a traffic jam even though they clearly cheated by pulling to the front of the lane next to you…

    That’s a pretty tough one to swallow. I’ll have to pray about it for awhile.

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