saturday night

it's saturday night and i'm cozy in my bed, with a glass of wine, a sweet, purring cat sleeping beside me, a sex in the city marathon on tv, and wondering if i'm gonna go to church in the morning or not. perhaps the journalisic, wonderings of carrie on tv have inspired me to write my thoughts down tonight. all i know is that i have some things i need to say.

tomorrow is a "big day" at the church where i used to work. it might be nice, as a former minister, to go and support the congregation in their celebration and dedication of the new building (which isn't exactly new since it was done before i left two years ago). it would definitely be nice to see some people i haven't seen in a long time. on the other hand, if i go, it feels a little weird to go and celebrate a building, since the Church is not actually a building, but a body of people. and so many christians in the states get stuck in the thought of the church as simply a building where you go to do rituals.

you see, this is the heart of one of my problems. lately, i am really questioning the relevance of the Church in today's society. i'm not saying that the Church cannot be or should not be relevant, but that it is not trying to be relevant because it continues to do the same old things in the same old ways, leaving out large groups of people. i see so many people attend church, follow the rules, and want to secure their place in heaven. all this is happening while oil continues to spill into the gulf of mexico, immigrant children worry that their parents will be taken away, and the addicted and homeless wander the streets hungry and hopeless. all because people seem to care more about money than doing what's right for our environment, the world, and our future. all because we care more about securing our own lives than caring for our brothers' and sisters' lives.

basically, i am saying that what i see is christians not acting as christians. i see religious people who follow a religion, but who don't work for social justice and equality. i see all different kinds of people, including myself, who are not welcome fully to participate in the ministries of the church because of rules. seriously. there are people, including me, who would love to dedicate their life to ministry and cannot because of the rules in the church (at least in my denomination). and that makes me mad. how can we alienate people rather than include them? what part of jesus' gospel talks about exclusion? now, tell me, how can we really offer hope to people, when we do not accept all people, challenge the corrupt, greedy, selfish parts of society, and refuse to be bold enough to speak out for justice, even if it's not popular? are we called to be popular and self-sustaining individualists, or are we called to be faithful, loving, compassionate, fair, thoughtful people? how can we offer hope when we leave out love and refuse to be relevant? this is the part of me that wants to stay away from the church, the institution that is failing.

but, there's this other part of me that wants to go to church in the morning. to fight. and to fight from the inside as much as i can. it's not like i'm gonna get up and start preaching, but it's more of a symbol to myself that i am not giving up on hope and love. that there is a need, perhaps, even for people like me, and for all people to stand up and speak out for love... to be bold, stand up, and call out the Church, the people, and even ourselves on the ways that we all are failing to live out a life that is true, real, and relevant... a life that reaches out in love and acceptance rather then rules and commandments... a life that encourages each of us to simply be true to who we really are; because who we really are, just as we are, is just perfect.

oh gosh... there is so much i don't know. but what i do know is that life is meant to be lived to the fullest and to be shared. and whether i go to church or not tomorrow, my life is filled with love. it is up to me what i do with that love. in two weeks, the love of my life will join me so that we can continue our journey through life together. it's a journey that continues, but that starts a completely new part. we will make these changes together, love each other through it all, and be true to ourselves. life is short. it's difficult. it's amazing. and it's full of hope, if we just look beyond ourselves and become willing to share life with others. perhaps all we can do is take those moments of joy, hope, and love that we feel and share it with others. perhaps when we focus on loving ourselves and each other rather than getting ahead and having power, then we will be relevant. i have hope.


Postat av: Ulrika

Amen to that Sis!

2010-05-23 @ 12:43:12
Postat av: Charlotte Strand

Amen to that!!!!

2010-05-23 @ 13:15:13
Postat av: Liz

U: tack sa mycket! kramar dig!

Charlotte: tak tak!!

girls, your support is awesome!

2010-05-24 @ 02:41:47
Postat av: catherine

beautifully written, and i totally agree, as usual.

2010-05-28 @ 08:43:52

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