Here is something I read on Facebook.
by Zach Whitsel
You know how if you ever get sick after eating something, you just can’t seem to stomach that same kind of food again for a while? That’s how I am with religion. I have an aversion to it. The thoughts of going in a church full of traditions and dress clothes to listen to churchy rhetoric makes me feel anxiety. I’m not joking at all.
I don’t like feeling like I need to play a part or be something I’m not. I’m not good at nodding and smiling while people are saying stuff that I know isn’t true. I despise having my emotions toyed with. Church members who create value for themselves through goody-goody works, and then hold those works over my head in comparison, are a discouragement to me. Evangelists living lives of luxury on the dimes of the simple turn my stomach. Preachers who would rather make assumptions and criticize people they don’t understand make me angry. Revivals that attract other churches but not the towns around them seem like a waste of time to me. Callings that get generalized and mysticised and laid on the backs of blue collar Christians seem too heavy to me. I don’t see the homeless Jesus who ate with strugglers and simplified truth in any of that.
So I left it all.
If you stay in a place that is full of smoke and mirrors, smoke and mirrors will end up being all you see. It won’t be long until your faith is gone. You’ll be more bitter and critical than the people around you, it’ll just all be aimed at God.
And it’s not God’s fault.
I got to lead a song at church this morning that warmed my soul. “I will build my life upon Your love; it is a firm foundation. And I will put my trust in you alone, and I will not be shaken.” We can’t count on people or the systems they create. Every person you know, including me, is making decisions riddled with bias and restricted by limited perspective. We’ll disappoint each other the first chance we get: surround yourself with real people who know that and don’t be afraid to leave the places who have lost touch with it. Your faith depends on a good foundation. Insecurities will have you build on sand. When the storms come, though, it’ll take your whole house with it.