yesterday i ran into a heap of the righteous christians. quite unexpectedly, and thus the more damage to my already tired and raw self.
it all started innocently enough. with a mission group meeting, sharing what everyone have been doing the last 9 months or so, what projects, what accomplishments – the usual stuff at such meetings.
when /me said that from september our church is pastor-less, and that yours truly has been very busy with stuff in the congregation, and thus somewhat tired and having had no time to plan and generate ideas because the current moment is just about what can be managed – it sparked off an unusual amount of reaction.
none of that was positive, supportive or encouraging.
questions like – why does your church have no pastor; what did you do to him; why does the bishop not send you a new one and so on – none of which i have either the mandate, or the knowledge to answer; and then came the text form a lady who i have never seen in our church in the past 20 years: ‘i have had close relationship with this congregation since 1970s, my family graves are in the churchyard; when suchansuch was the head of council here, there was a sense of deep faith and community, etc etc’ – implying that now this sense of whateverness is not there and how could you let this place come to that. and so it went on, till i got up and left the room.
i washed up after the meeting and collapsed in a heap of nerves when i was sure nobody could see me. of course, the idea of not taking fools personally crossed my mind, but it did not seem to work. i do not think i have done any of the things they (for reasons unknown) accused me of. i cannot understand their motives in doing what they did. i am still hurt and bewildered.
so, i will call this experience, because i definitely cannot call it anything else.
what was confirmed, was the following: never admit pain and weariness to those that call themselves christians (unless you have known them for years, and are dead certain there is nothing of you they have not seen). because they will accuse you of being not christian or believer, and kill you instead of trying to help – and display a lot of superiority and act with an air of righteousness and attitude of judgement. and trust me, that hurts.
also: this probably explains why there are so many pastors and people in the ministry who burn out and die inside. because there is nowhere they can find help when they hurt; the people round them see the stereotypes and mercilessly kill anyone/thing that does not correspond to their stereotypical perception of religion.
i was listening to their comments and thinking – where is christ in all you say now? how does spiritually dismembering and judging another one – and one who is your host and thus bound by rules of hospitality in addition – make your walk with christ more productive? how does that lead you closer to god?
it is because of the self-righteous, the unloving, that christ had to die. probably, because they did not see the god had come to them, just a regular guy, talking of things that did not correspond to their world-vision.
and yet – i yearn for a world of unconditional acceptance, and listening, and people that are sanctuaries for those that are hunted or haunted. does the exp stop me from building it? no. because i walk with christ, and he is not far from me.