“In all affairs it’s a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.” Bertrand Russell
Usually I just shake my head at Josiah’s sarcastic remarks about church signs or “Christian” bumper stickers/t-shirts. But I saw a church billboard recently that just made me want to gag (and agree with Josiah…..in that order) The sign said:
“Don’t wrestle with God. Just nestle.” [insert collective groan]
Disclaimer: A) Sorry if it was your church sign. B) I really love wrestling C) Potential for overuse of air quotes
Later that week a bunch of gals from church showed up at my house for a crazy evening of camaraderie. (Remember girls – whatever happens on the hill….stays on the hill :-) ) One of the “church ladies” noted on social media that it was “not your stereotypical church function….in the best way.” That cracked me up!
You see – we have these preconceived notions of what a church (or a church “event”) should look like and what a Christian should act like. People tend to have ideas about how to read the bible, how to interpret the bible, how to use the bible. Sometimes it seems like there are more stereotypes about Christians than there are actual Christians.
Here’s my opinion (for what it’s worth) – I think God INTENDED for us to wrestle with all of it. True relationships include disagreements and doubts, misunderstandings and forgiveness. God wants to have a true and intimate relationship with each of us. Listen – if God didn’t want me to ask questions or wrestle with the answers in order to overcome my doubts, the bible would have been written more like an actual instruction manual…..Step 1, Step 2 – Diagram A – Attachment B, etc.
Following Christ is not going to be comfortable. Reading (and understanding) the bible is never going to be easy. But, I encourage you to challenge your preconceived notions. We should ask those difficult questions. Take the blinders off – put the boxing gloves on. Don’t follow the herd and take the Word lying down….OK – THAT was just bad….but you get the point.
Over the years at actionchurch, I have often heard Don say – “Don’t take my word for it, read it for yourself.” He isn’t just being humble. He is challenging you to think about everything you ever believed in a different way. I love the fact that we don’t have a stereotypical preacher and I’m going to do my part to make sure we never become a stereotypical church.
“By doubting we are led to question, by questioning we arrive at the truth.”