what have we become?

This one wanders a little. It’s not as clear and direct as I try to be, but in the mess I think there’s something important. It may read harsher than I want it to but the more I’m seeing this, the more a part of me is dying, the more a part of me is losing hope, the more I grieve what we’ve all become.

The more time I spend on the internet the worse the world seems.

Lots has been written about why people are horrible on the internet, but I continue to be surprised by it. I’ve been beyond horrified by the number of Christians loudly and directly advocating for discrimination. The inability to see how absolutely inconsistent that is with Jesus teaching is frightening.

It’s always been there I suppose but the more I learn and try to become aware of all the ways I’m afford an inordinate amount of privilege, that I’ve done nothing to deserve the more I see old arguments I once made turn my stomach.
It all kind of flares up every few months. It’s a court decisions, policy change, a shooting.

Christians just come out in droves to argue with vitriol about their rights, their say, their positions, what they will not give up and stands they won’t back down from.

Then it all hit me the other day.

You may have seen this before but humor me.

Christians are unbelievably ego centric.

It’s just all about us. And not the collective us either. The singular. It’s all about me.

And worse I think more than any of us would like to admit, the church is a big part of reinforcing that mindset.

My faith is personal. It’s about me and God. If you ask me about my testimony, or Christianity in general really, I’ll tell you all about me. My faith journey in which, more often than not, I’m the hero. I’ve overcome difficulties and struggled to become what I am. Sure God is there, but its’ all about me.

My story isn’t the story of the community. My story and experience isn’t the lens by which someone can see love, grace, hope and a community story spanning back to the days of Jesus. We are the point.

So no wonder when things change the only way we can see it is through the impact it will have on us. Everything is seen through our own eyes. Rather than see the beauty of using our power and influence to give rights and security to others we only see what WE stand to lose. We can only see the impact this has or could have on us. We continue to work from places of fear and a mentality of worldly power.

We are all that matters. The rhetoric is undeniable.

We’re standing up for our faith.

We’re calling a nation back to God.

We’re speaking the truth in love.

We’re only really worried about ourselves.

We aren’t standing up for our faith when we actively work to keep our neighbours out of our country because, insert whatever lie you’d like here, means they don’t deserve or belong to be here. Whatever the argument its centered on us and not them.

We aren’t calling a nation back to God when we don’t speak out about real oppression, we’re allowing it to drift further from His way. Few things are more anti-Christian than oppression. God loved us to much he allowed us free will enough to not choose him. How many Christians have made loud their disapproval of the Canadian Senates idea that Imans should be vetted and certified by the state? No, that oppression doesn’t’ affect us. How is that a decision marked by love and allowing free will of our neighbours?

We aren’t speaking in love when we make everything foundational, building more walls, more barriers and more gates we use to keep from connecting with Jesus. It’s not loving when we create an all or nothing faith that pushes people out more than it draws them in. One that says “you’re not one of us”, rather than say “there’s room at the table. Please come, be a part of our community and, be blessed.” There is no love when we make their sin worse than ours. When we forgive and offer grace to our friends but do nothing but vilify those we don’t agree with. We are speaking in vengeance and judgment. But we are on the inside, already saved, so it’s ok.

We aren’t working for the marginalized and oppressed because they aren’t us and all we care about is our rights, our power, our place.

And before you think it, no Christians aren’t the only ones who do this, but isn’t that really the problem? We aren’t any different from everyone else? We’re just as worried about our place, power and say in this kingdom rather than being focused on the kingdom of God?

We proudly stand on our right to only carry the Roman soldiers pack for one mile when Christ has called us to carry it two. We say to do so would be to support the Roman empire and we can’t stand for that. And we see the defense of that right as honouring and glorifying to Christ and his work.

Because Christ is my savior. He cares for me.

Me, me, me, not matter what it robs from you.

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