I’ve been keeping up with Transformation Church’s Crazy Faith series. Have you? Check it out. It’s amazing.
Anyway, in one of the sermons (I think the first one), Pastor Todd touched on how the idea of right and wrong is baby faith. It’s the beginning steps of being a believer and how we shouldn’t still be focused on trivial things that are small in the eyes of God. And that’s where I want to spend some time.
I felt compelled to write an essay in defense of the church. Y’all know I like church but then I asked myself, “What am I defending?” I knew why I wanted to. Based on the current news cycle, church folks have been getting dragged and rightfully so. Don’t get me started on Fantasia and her husband (comment below to get me started), Erica’s interview on the Breakfast Club and forgiveness. The church be(en) tripping and millennials hate it for the most part. And I completely understand why they do. Church hurt is a real thing and people within the church are not the most welcoming folks. Can we really blame folks for running the other way?
Which goes back to the baby faith. I believe churches push those messages so often and that’s why we miss out on the best parts of God. Too often we hear messages condemning sin and telling us how to lead acceptable and holy lives that will please God but what pleases God is our faith. No one’s teaching how to grow your faith, how to trust and believe God and how to evolve your beliefs.
The messages that run millennials away are the ones that ostracize us and make us feel as though we have to fit inside a box. That the only way we are worthy is if we do exactly what the church says or even what the Bible says.
Because I’ve heard those messages so often, I believe it’s limited my faith. Right and wrong isn’t always straight forward. That gray area exists and will keep you stuck if you have baby faith. God knows that we’re all doing our best and that’s enough for Him. He knows our heart and that we are trying. Why aren’t the sermons about that?
So, to everyone who has given up on church, I’m not here to convince you to do anything besides your best. By no means am I suggesting ignore the doctrine but I am suggesting that you evolve beyond that. I’m telling you that there’s more to God than wondering if you’re doing the right thing or not because you’re only doing your best and that’s all God wants. I’ve adopted the idea that if I’m not bringing hurt or harm to anyone then I’m going for it. Waiting in that gray area slows us down and keeps us from simply choosing.
I read an Instagram post years ago that said something along the lines of: We toggle between decisions as if we will be punished for one or the other. Should I take this job? Should I do this? Or do that? Just do it. As long as your heart is in the right place, you’re on the right path and making the right choices. I challenge you to see God beyond the entity sitting in the sky judging every little thing you do. Remember Jesus and live your life.
And I know theologians, pastors and church folks will reject this but this isn’t for them. It’s for the folks who haven’t gotten to know God because of them. I’ve come to know and love a God who loves me and blesses me in spite of the fact that I don’t pray or read my Bible often and cuss too much and raise a little hell every now and again. A God that loves me in spite of the fact that I fall short daily. Hourly. Minute-ly. (Is that a thing?) His transformational love, everlasting grace, relentless mercy that literally chases me down and pulls me back in. Isn’t that a God you would want to know? That’s the God I want everyone to know and experience.
As always, take what you need and leave the rest.
Great read Kaylia. This is actually a topic of convo for our church right now because millennials come and go and never actually join. I think a lot of it has to do with the messages preached and making us feel ostracized as you said.
Thanks for reading! The ostracism plays a huge role in it. No one wants to be anywhere they don’t feel like they belong.