I have some thoughts I just have to get out there...
Recently, a friend posted a youtube video of Pastor Mark Driscoll and his feelings about the book The Shack, a fictional story about a man and his struggles to deal with a horrible event in his life.
I don't know if any of you have read the book or not, but my parents gave it to me one time when I visited them and I read most of it in one night. It was truly a good read. I loved the descriptions, the meaning behind them, and the story line. It was difficult to read at times, because there were some very hard scenes. I cried my eyes out several times. But it was beautifully written.
What bugged me about the video, and Mr. Driscoll's feelings about the book was this: He condemned it based on the authors descriptions of "God" and some of the statements about the Trinity. I almost wonder if he forgot that this book was a work of fiction, rather than a theological textbook. He even goes on to claim it is a work of heresy. Ok then Mr. Driscoll, let's get the pitchforks and torches and burning pole out of the storage unit. While you are at it, we should probably drag CS Lewis and Tolkien along too, and anyone else who has used fiction and descriptions to try and convey Christ and His Nature. (Please note the sarcasm.)
Honestly, I get so annoyed with people. SERIOUSLY. I get upset when rather than being a Church, a bride to Him, they want to sit fireside and argue and divide. It makes me so angry. I know I shouldn't get angry about it, but it frustrates me that people would rather fight, than love. It makes me angry that instead of showing people God's Love, they wish to throw daggers of judgement. Correct me if I am wrong, but didn't God say judge not lest you be judged? Didn't Paul chastise those who argued and divided from each other over petty arguments and opinions? Didn't Jesus seriously piss off those (The Pharisees and Sadducees) who personally judged others and held lofty opinions on HIS WORDS, the Scriptures?
I'll sit here and admit, this is one of the reasons I haven't been to "church" in some time now. Not that all churches are like this, because there are many, many churches that aren't. It is because I have a very difficult time sitting there and not saying something when judgement starts from someone. I'm pretty sure that some of my churchy friends think I have left my faith, but just the opposite is true. I've embraced it all the more. I do not believe that my lack of attendance reflects a loss of faith in God. Perhaps a loss of faith in people, but not in God. The Church is His people who love and serve Him, not a building with a cross on it.
We all judge, and we all have opinions, it is simply human nature. Perhaps though, we should learn to keep our judgments to ourselves, and refer them to The Judge, instead of spewing them at others, and possibly reflecting not God's will, but our own feelings?
I have friends who have been so badly hurt and disenchanted with Jesus/God/Christianity by other Christians who felt the need to judge, that I don't know if I will ever be able to show enough of God's Love and His forgiving character to show them that God is not like those who tried and failed to represent Him. It breaks my heart, and makes me angry. And you know, I need to work on my judgement of those who judged too. None of us are perfect, least of all me. I just hurt for those who have lost faith or refuse to have faith because of the poison that has been spewed on them by those who felt they were entitled to judge.