Saturday, June 09, 2012

Why would I follow this?

Sorry to have been away from posting for so long.  Life gets busy, and Facebook gets in the way, too.

Today, I got this comment message. Sadly, it's "anonymous", but perhaps a response here may be helpful.
Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Still there. Home soon": 
Hi. I was going to follow you, but read on your bio that you are a christian. For the life of me, I cant understand (on any spiritual level), why you would follow this faith? With so much more spiritual (kindly) leanings, why? I have nothing against you at all, but I would like an answer from a Gay person. It feels to me like there has to be a strong submissiveness in you? I mean you only kindness. I hope you understand. 
 First let me say I am grateful for your kindness and understand your dilemma. But, trust me honey.  I'm as gay as it gets.  I'm happy to chat.  I'm not what you seem to think.

The public face of Christianity in this country (maybe in the world) is of those who make the most noise, get on TV more, make headlines.  The loudest voices are the ranting, brain-dead, fundamentalist.  The Roman Catholic Church with its sad patriarchy and rigid theology makes the press, too.

That's not all there is.  Many times, I wonder if some of those noisy, condemning, rigid, judgmental asses even believe in the same God I do. But there I go being the rigid, judgmental one.  Hmmmn.  It ain't easy.

I, too, sometimes fear calling myself a "Christian" because of the comment (and judgment) such a claim elicits.  Perhaps it would be more accurate to say "I'm a Jesus-Follower."

But, dear anonymous, please know that being Christian does not mean being stupidly submissive to a rigid set of rules and judgments.  It doesn't mean that to me, or for me, or in me. In fact, it's quite the opposite.  It is a call to use my mind, to struggle with the Holy One of Being in deep relationship, and to live a life of acceptance, love, peace, and justice.  I can't do those things without that relationship.

I do not feel smugly superior or have some "product" that I want to sell you or think you "need." I will say (and I think I hear it from you) that as human beings we are spiritual journeyers.  And, I don't place judgments on what spiritual journey you may be on.

I don't know that I can or need to justify to you why I am Christian.  It's not (for me) something to "convince you" to accept or a debate to "win."  I believe true Christianity is very kind, gentle, challenging, frustrating, joyful, and life-giving.  I can sure understand how that may be very difficult to see in the public face that is put forth by so many who call themselves Christian.

It's not about submission, but surrender.  It's not about rigid religion but relationship with the Holy.  It's not about judgment, but justice.  It's not about loathing, but love.  Well, that's as alliterative as I can handle.  Most spiritual journeys are about those things.  But any of them can get really f#$%d up.

Let's talk more.  Don't dismiss me out of hand.  My email's in the profile.