Thursday, February 2, 2012
I find it so so sad that politics bring out the worst in us, especially Christians. I have always been a political bystander, I think it's an extension of my reluctance to join any one clique in high school. I prefer to float,spend time on my own, drawing circles in the dirt on the playground while others huddled and whispered. But don't get me wrong, I spent plenty of time in the huddle too, and I got burned. Maybe the pain of that keeps me club-free even now.
Many people think the Church is a club, especially in the American South. I've heard it described as a pay as you can country club- providing programming and support services to families who donate what and when they can to keep it running. But this is not at all what the Church is supposed to be.
Programs and support services are good and fine and necessary- sometimes- but it shouldn't be the whole picture. Church is not a slightly less worrisome place to drop off your teenager - than say- the mall. If the Church is doing it's job- the mall may well be a more innocuous alternative.
To follow Jesus is to be counter cultural, a revolutionary. The world we live in is about power and wealth, Jesus is about humility and poverty- afterall, during his years of ministry he was quite literally homeless. If this is true about Jesus, which scripture says it is (He says it himself) and we are commanded to be "imitators of Christ," shouldn't this fact influence us? Rather than striving to be the top of the heap, the one with the most friends, money, toys, votes, whatever- shouldn't we be downwardly mobile, humbling ourselves so that God is amplified? Jesus was not an elected official- nor did he advocate for the political system. In fact, he was tortured and murdered by the political system.
We have to look beyond the moment- the politics- the name calling- the sand throwing - and realize what a grand distraction it all is from what really matters.
If Christians believe that politics are going to save this nation, we are in deep trouble. Politics cannot save, politics cannot even transform- that is the myth of Progress which arose out of the Enlightenment- only God can do those things. He can, and He will- one by one- across dinner tables, in office cubicles, in coffee shops and under bridges,if we are willing to take his hand, partner with Him, and do the work. But when the Holy Spirit comes knocking, comes to tug at your heart and mind- are you too busy watching Fox News or CNN or TBN to notice, am I? The answer is yes, sometimes, maybe most of the time.
So put your banner down, I will too, no matter which side it's waving for, and pick up your cross.
Posted by Cameron Dezen Hammon at 6:07 AM