Today we started a series in Galatians at our church. I am super psyched. I love Paul’s letters to the church and to the people of Galatia. I think it is amazing that what was written to a group of people so many years ago still applies to what is going on in the world today. Our societies may change and progress is always being made but when you cut to the core, people are still, and have always been, people.
I think I deserve some sort of prize for making such a plain yet complex statement (see what I just did there, I’m awesome at this).
This is fun, but back to the point. Not a lot has changed. We are all still sinners, and our struggles have not really progressed with the rest of our society. Craziness.
19The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like.
After having this so-called epiphany during the service my mind started to wander, as it usually does, to the screeching two year old sitting fairly close by. We sit at a similar location every service and this adorable, yet loud little toddler also sits nearby with her doting parents. This does not thrill me. I love kids. I also volunteer in the kids department of our church so I also know that there is a special, fun place for children to go during the service so that adults like me can listen to Jesus without thinking hidiously sinful thoughts about shaking babies. Ok, I would never really do this, and I don’t even really think about doing this, but this does really annoy me.
I started to think, wouldn’t it have been great if Paul had included this issue in his letter to Galatia. If I could write a letter to my church what would it say? Surely I would include the toddler issue, “How can you expect people to hear God when all they can hear is you cooing and your toddler screaming?” Truly, I am not a bad person. And obviously I don’t have children yet, or else I am sure I would be much more understanding. But…we have like 8 nurseries!!! If someone could give me a logical reason for this debauchery I am sure I would be much more sympathetic, but this just seems ludicrous to me at the moment.
ok, I’m done.
Back to my letter. Here it is:
Let me start by saying that I like you. I would not keep coming back if I didn’t. I think your music is amazing and your pastor is always preaching the love. I like the love. “And they will know we are Christians by our love.” I know this is an old hymn but I think it may also be a bible verse but I can’t find it anywhere so that is debatable. But I truly believe this, and I think this is what real Christianity is all about, and I feel the love in this church.
You are also fun. I like coming to church. I have a good time here. I was a little intimidated by the already established relationships at first but I got over it and you welcomed me in. Thank you for accepting me even if I don’t quite fit your mold.
But I have one question…and it is not really a nice question. It is not the type of question you should ask of your church. It is not the type of question that an attending member of your church should be asking, but I need to know. It has been bugging me.
When it was time to change locations of our church because of building issues, why did you choose to move to the wealthiest area in our already super wealthy county? The location was not close to the old location. We lost several members because of this move, I imagine because of the distance. And I already heard your rehearsed justifications. You said that the new location was in a central area to all of Kansas City. Really? I just don’t buy it. Call me a cynic but I know you are looking to grow. And money makes growth a whole lot easier. We now meet in a middle school surrounded by mansions and homes of professional athletes. I apologize if I just don’t see how this location brings in all of KC metro. To me it seems like it is a location directed in bringing in all of KC metros high rollers. So cut the BS church. If this was your motive, shame on you, and own it. Maybe this is where you felt the Lord was taking you, people in mansions need God/love just as much as someone living on the street, but you need to be more open. I need you to be a little more candid with your motives church, because I am a skeptic.
I am sorry for doubting you and sorry that I do not trust you, but I don’t. I love you but you are run by people, and sometimes people can do things for the wrong reasons. Even if they think they are doing right. But maybe they are, I just don’t know. I am sorry for my doubts.
heidi- member (I sit on the right side near the front)
Well, obviously I am not a spiritual leader because my letter was nothing like Paul’s. My letter was judging. It was honest but judging. I am a judger. Thank goodness for people like Paul.