I had read an article earlier about someone who divides his relationships between “the rest of the world” and his brothers and sisters in Christ. Frankly, it made me shake my head as the bad taste in my mouth arose.
Another Christian, dividing.
Before someone comes to my post and dissects its content with Scripture, as I assume many will be thinking about how believers should not be yoked with non-believers, I will give my personal view (my personal Christian view) on why the article of division is such a disgrace to me. I will boldly uphold the truth of Christ and His proclamation of love.
Last night, I began watching a documentary about how the Catholic church in a small town in Ireland had, basically, treated the unwed women and the children they had bore out of wedlock, as worthless and disposable people. People, just like them, not worthy of being welcomed, loved or included. It was a sad realization of how people throw their religion around and justify their exclusions with a poor representation of Christ and, with great emphasis, blindly place themselves above all others because of their self-proclaimed positions as, “authorities of God.” The gruesome reality of the rest of the documentary was too much to handle, as I was already disgusted by these supposed, “loving and Godly people.” The remainder of the true story would have told how the church was treating these, “less than human, bound for hell” women and children, and how they were mistreated by being starved, beaten and, eventually, buried in mass graves.
I didn’t finish the documentary.
It was a true reflection of so many within the confines of religious brainwashing. It was a misrepresentation of the true nature of Jesus. It was a sad and familiar quintessence of the Catholic church. It was a terrible truth; a factual echo of how the prideful men of Rome had taken the Gospel into their own hands – out of the hands of Christ – and staked their fleshly claim as head of His Church.
Boy, that backfired, and it continues to today.
It is so incredibly sad to see how Christ is only regarded as a tool; an implemented figure who is not regarded as the head of the Church, but is only a dead man who sits below the high-rises of a man many call, “Pope,” and his entourage of authoritative hierarchy. WHAT A DISGRACE!! What degradation! What a slap in the face to claim a position that is only for the mediator between man and God: Jesus Christ!!
The article I had read prompted the recollection of the documentary, the early mindset I had developed as I was being exposed to church and the many false teachings that I was being coerced into following during those early years. It took much time, tons of research and an open mind to see that the Church is so far from the early church – the Church He had established – and is now a place of reformed Roman rule. It is the same as it had been all of those years ago as the Romans decided to claim Christ and His church, as their own. Their prideful, own. It’s now just a different format. It’s still as damning as the Catholic divide. It is now labeled as, “reformation,” as we can see, while traveling down the many roads of our cities and towns. We see the same hierarchy within the Protestant divisions. We see the same authoritative figures staking their claims within the many establishments: Baptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Methodist, et cetera, et cetera et cetera. Division after division, divided by Roman rule and still dividing within these little places that are on so many corners throughout our cities and towns.
The article divided. The man’s mindset, and evidently, his heart, has been divided by the divisions that are so tightly intertwined within our knowledge of church over the knowing of His Church. His words made it evident. The documentary was an illustrative depiction, construing the same heart of the broken man who wrote the article. The disease of division had reared its ugly head early on within my walk through religion. It was a benign disease that was quickly tackled by Holy Spirit before becoming malignant. It was a turning point that led me to seek a relationship of love with the Lord, through Christ, and His heart of truth that led me to recognize just how incredibly incorrect it is to exclude God’s children. The exclusion of His creations (all people) is a division that I will have no part of. Although I struggle to love the ways of people, I don’t exclude the atheist, or the “unsaved,” or the Hindu, or the Buddhist, or even the ones who slander me for my beliefs. No.
I love them. I pray for them. They are humans.
They struggle. They fight. They hurt. They are here for a reason, beyond what I dissect. Beyond my learned behavior of placing them within a divide of some sort.
They are not for me to judge. They are for me to be kind to. They are for me to be a servant to. They are for me to see as another person: a living, eating, breathing individual, no different from myself. I am to leave the sins that they commit to the Lord as I pray for them. As I just walk beside them, as I do, within my relationship with Christ, with a hope of them seeing what the light of Christ does within my position beside them. What He does within my space that I have taken up here. Doing my best to be an example of Him, instead of a pompous tyrant, upholding my own little rule alongside the pontificates of the world.
Do your divides do just that: divide? Do they negate the love and true nature of Christ? Where is the grace of God within your heart?