Sisters in Spirit is a series of blog posts by a group of women who felt that a spiritual perspective was lacking from the steady stream of news and information that flowed through their daily lives. They each agreed to carve out a space on their blogs on a monthly basis for a spiritual conversation. The topic this month is: what does it mean to be a Christian today?
This post is written by Rebekah — who prefers to post here, although you can also find her online at www.honeysucklelife.com.
Rebekah is a blogger, amateur photographer, and missions volunteer with Adventures in Missions. A lifetime of being a pastor’s kid, attending church regularly, and a private Christian school education gave her a lot of knowledge about the nuances of theology without a lot of faith. Now she’s trying to figure out how faith and theology applies to her relationships and daily life.
This week is our annual beach vacation. Everywhere I look I see siblings and cousins, aunts and nieces, nephews and uncles. This week us unusually stormy, and so this afternoon I came inside to catch up on the news and give my introverted brain a rest.
I come from a family that is passionate about two things: God and country. And we often disagree, vehemently and loudly, about many issues. This week, two topics are claiming most of our attention. The first is the Aurora theater shootings, and the resulting discussion of the second amendment. Where positions are touted before compassion for the loss of life and the victim’s families. The second is the interview with the CEO of Chick-fil-a where he took a “pro-family” position.
I’d love to scream and stomp as I argue my positions with family members, throwing insults and claims of insanity, and sometimes I do cross that line. I forget that I’m arguing with people, and what good is the validity of my position on a certain issue if the person in front of me thinks I’m a jerk?
We’re moving to Ireland in a few weeks, and I recently packed up a canvas painted by my husband and I. Across the three foot frame is painted “Love God. Love People.” It’s a simple manifesto of what I believe it means to be a Christian today.
What good are my positions on politics and theology if the people around me don’t feel loved? What good is an interview about homosexuality and the family if homosexuals feel rejected and despised by the church? What good is endorsing gun control if I don’t understand the fear that causes us to purchase a gun?
What good are positions? How much more important are people?
“To become neighbours is to bridge the gap between people. As long as there is distance between us and we cannot look in each other’s eyes, all sorts of false ideas and images arise. We give them names, make jokes about them, cover them with our prejudices, and avoid direct contact. We think of them as enemies. We forget that they love as we love, care for their children as we care for ours, become sick and die as we do. We forget that they are our brothers and sisters and treat them as objects that can be destroyed at will.
Only when we have the courage to cross the street and look in one another’s eyes can we see there that we are children of the same God and members of the same human family.” – Henri Nouwen
I hope you continue this conversation by reading and commenting other perspectives on Christianity with my other Sisters in Spirit. Become part of the conversation:
Sarah is municipal attorney, mom to a toddler boy, and United Methodist’s pastor’s wife. (She does not play the organ.) She is a life-long Missouri girl with a heart for hospitality and social justice. Sarah enjoys cooking, running, knitting and embroidery, reading, and playing in the sprinkler. Sarah blogs at www.beautyschooldropout.net
Bianca is a newlywed Navy wife from the great state of Texas (where she coincidentally currently resides), and she and her husband are expecting their first child in late summer. She has a passion for serving others, asking hard questions and sharing The Gospel with both her words and actions. Bianca loves Jesus, her hubs, authentic friendships, traveling, making lists of all kinds, and trying new recipes which she blogs about on BecomingBianca.com.