My title could definitely be contraversial, but that’s because it is something true that really shouldn’t be.
Church people should represent God. I’m not saying that people should be perfect because that will never be possible. I see people in church pretending to be perfect or even pointing out that they “aren’t perfect” in such a prideful way. People talk about struggles as a past tense thing, even when they’re still going through it. I understand having faith in things getting better. On the other hand, if there’s no conversation about how difficult getting through problems are in the moment then it’s hard for people to know they aren’t alone. People will either feel like everyone is fake or as if they’re are the only ones with problems. If you’re not being truthful with where you’re at with yourself, it’s like all your advice for others doesn’t have the same affect because it isn’t genuine. People in the church talk about loving one another, but still subconsiously look down on people who don’t believe everything they do. I see christians that get this weird superiority complex, as if they did anything to earn what God has blessed them with. I feel very passionate about this subject right now not just because of what I’ve been through over the past year, but also because of all of the people I’ve talked to that have experienced this same thing.
I’ve had so many conversations with people about why they are questioning God and or church and the number one reason is people who claim God in an ungodly way. I feel like most people even if they don’t know God, understand that he is good. So the thing that draws them away from God, is people. I’ve felt this way and I am a person who always has had a desire for God. People who claim God have drawn me away and don’t get me wrong because that is on me. I wish I didn’t have that reaction, but it was almost subconcious. My problem with this is that it’s hard to explain to people how God’s character is, when church people don’t represent him. It’s hard to explain to people that church is a place to worship and love on eachother when in reality it seems like a place of judgement or where people put on a show.
I know someone who is gay, whose parents went to church. He was told in middle school, that he wasn’t allowed to go with them anymore because it was “embarassing” to be seen with him and because the people at the church would look at them weirdly. That is not love. That is not how it should be. Why are we so concered about who other people are? Above all we should be loving God and loving his people, not judging. We tell people at church to come to God as they are, but if who they are is too far off from the “christian culture” then it’s like yeah we don’t associate with you. Also maybe we do “accept” people, but still treat them differently because of our own uncomfotablility. Everyone is their own person and has their own struggles and problems and thought processes. Church should be a place where people can come worship God without worrying about others opinions. God is the ultimate judge, which he has the right to be since he is the creator. If someone asks for your opinion, by all means you should give it. But if someone just wants to know God, it is no one’s job to try and tell them how they should come to him.
I use to think of church as a safe place where I learn about God, worship, talk to others who love God, and that’s because my church in San Diego was that kind of place. Ever since I’ve been in Arizona, my faith has been more challenged than ever before. I have just encountered such disengenuous people it turns me away from church. I’ve been afraid to be involved with church and church people. I go to church for God and then I keep my distance from people. I’m afraid to get close to others.
I miss the Isabel who was very optimistic about people and life, but I’ve been beaten down a lot. I’m still a happy person and I still love people, but I would rather do it from a distance. I’m thinking maybe that’s just apart of growing up and maybe I’m just learning to become more aware.
Anyways I don’t think I’m the first one to go through these type of feelings and I won’t be the last. I just want to share my opinions and experiences because this is my blog and I know whoever wants to read it will and others won’t. With anything I write, I pray it helps people. Even if one person gets something good out of this, then it was worth the write.
My goal at this point in my life is to learn boundaries. I don’t want to never open up to people or not make new friends out of fear, but I need to find a good medium from that and where I am right now. I don’t want to keep letting my past expriences rule my future decisions. I don’t want to let bad experiences with church people turn me away from God. God is love. God is good. God is for us. God is almighty. God wants what’s best for everyone no matter who they are, that’s what makes him God. There is no favoritism with God. He died for every person that has ever existed and will exist, knowing fully well how each person would turn out. He loves everyone so much that he has given us a option to not be in relationship with him. He is not who people say, he is who he says he is. I just want to write this for people and let you guys know that God is such goodness and brings so much joy to my life. I don’t want people to ruin God for anyone. On the other hand, there should be no hate for those people either because God loves them just the same. Some people are just misguided and aren’t aware that how they act can turn people away from a relationship with God. I wasn’t really aware of it until I was hurt by people and until I heard other stories. No matter what happens, all I know is that God is still on the throne and he will always be love.
“Love is patient, love is kind. Love does not envy, is not boastful, is not arrogant, is not rude, is not self-seeking, is not irritable, and does not keep record of wrongs.”