I don’t normally voice my opinion on religion. It’s a sensitive topic for a lot of people and I hate trying to validate my opinions. I did go to a private religion based school but it was t for that reason. I have a very unorthodox view on religion and it just gets my goat when someone approaches me at work or even corners me at the store to tell me about Jesus. They don’t even phrase it that way anymore. They always ask “do you go to church.”
Most of you have not had the pleasure of meeting me in person and those who have know that my facial expressions often get me in trouble. Sometimes it’s hilarious, other times my friends generally scatter and start searching for food or coffee as a peace offering. I’m also extremely stubborn and refuse to lie to people. When someone asks me if I have a boyfriend I say no because I enjoy being single (unless your the old bitties at my church, then yes I have a handsome boyfriend named Alistair Theren). If you ask what’s my favorite book I’ll say I have many-pick a genre. If you ask what I do for fun I’ll answer “I love to play video games!” Lying only gives a false persona and nam not embarrassed by who I am nor do I want to give someone the wrong idea about me. So when I get asked if I go to church my answer is: “No, no I don’t.”
They never ask why, they never say “oh too bad,” their reply is always something along the lines of “you need to.”
No. I don’t need to. I’d like to but my home church is 45 minutes away and I work on Sunday’s.
Whoever has cornered me, today it was some 19 year old who comes into my store once a week just for something to do, then proceeds to tell me that if I did go to church my life would be on point.
Today I changed my routine and asked this kid why it was so imparative I attend church. He told me that a life with God was the only life worth living. For him, I’m sure that’s true. This boy was very confused as to why I was shaking my head and kept trying to get me to see his point. Because he was so young and I have yet to anger anyone today I decided to give him my official opinion on ‘going to church’.
“I’m sure loads of people feel that way, but I don’t.” I told him. “I grew up a back row baptist, I attended a Christian school and I have been to several churches all over the U.S. and all over the world. No two churches are alike–even within the same denomination–they teach from the same book but they all teach something different. Did you know there is a church not too far from here that locks the doors when the service begins and the pastor picks your marital partner for you.” I don’t know about you but this concerns me.
“I am a Christian but I’m not the same kind that you are. In Ecclisiates we are encouraged to find faith for yourself. And that’s what I did, and once I did I became a Christian. I became a better person and I don’t even go to church regularly. I take my bible with me everywhere. I look to it when I need comfort or enouragement that I can’t get from family or friends. But being a Christian is more than going to church and having the ability to quote scripture. It’s about being a good person, spreading love, and treating everyone with respect. Not everyone is called to preach, and not everyone is ready to make the leap of faith. My dad is Agnistic, my mom is a baptist. I don’t know what I am but I’m comfortable with the relationship I have with God and that’s good enough for me.”
The young man, having no rebuttle, smiled, shook my hand and left me in peace. I may have come on a little too strong but that’s just it–I am strong. I’m opinionated, stubborn and confident, sometimes maybe even intimidating but that’s who I am.
I choose to lead by example. Yes, I cuss and I drink sometimes, I even have tattoos. But it was humanity that put weight behind ‘curse words’ and drinking can be done responsibly. As for my tats, those rules from the Old Testament were created for a race of people who worshipped deities by marking their bodies. Every tattoo I have means something to me, their my way of reminding myself (and others) I’m beautiful in every way and I want more. I treat everyone with respect until they loose that privilege. I work mainly in customer service for heavens sake and studied restorative justice practices, being nice is something I’m good at. It’s a skill that can’t always be learned. And most importantly, no where in the bible does it state blatantly that attending church is a requirement.
Everyone, and I do mean everyone is entitled to their own opinions. It doesn’t matter if your episcopalian, Methodist, Catholic or whatever denomination you are; as long as your comfortable with your relationship with the Lord then your golden. It’s not my place to judge and it’s definitely not everyonelses even though there a plenty that think it is.
So, for the love of God (pun intended) just be yourself and love life. And God if that’s your thing.
Sorry for the rant (not really), WildeKat’s.
I’m sending lots of love,