Sounds like an oxymoron right? I wish it was. I wish it wasn't a term I repeatedly heard from people when sharing my faith. But all too often it is. (P.S. I can tell within about 5 seconds of asking which direction the conversation is headed.)
Before we go any further, let me say if you are church hurt, I apologize on behalf of the church that truly follows Jesus and everything he died for. If you have ever been made to feel like you didn't belong in the very place that was created to welcome you, I am sorry. If you have ever been made to feel like you aren't enough and your mistakes are too big, I am sorry. If you have ever been sexually abused, I am sorry. If you ever been told your sexual preference, marital status, race or anything else for that matter, disqualified for being loved, I am so sorry. My heart aches for you.
I grew up in a Southern Baptist church and while I am thankful for the seeds of my faith that were planted, honestly, a lot of other things were planted that as an adult and through my own walk with Christ, I do not agree with.
I have spent my fair time studying and reading the Bible (I am sure I could do more) but in all my time studying, I have never read of Jesus being mean, hateful, spiteful or rude to someone based on their human behavior. I have countlessly read of Jesus loving, welcoming, healing, and eating with those whom he loved and would eventually die for.
My past is less than perfect. I was raised in the projects by my teenage mom and grandparents. I was running away from home by 8th grade. I was doing things at 14 that most adults haven't done. I dropped out of highschool. I had my first beautiful daughter at 20. I am everything, the "perfect christian" is not. I am about as broken as they come. But Jesus!!! Jesus said, nope not this one, this one is mine. This one I will use. This one has a story. What you intended for harm, I intend for good. I don't know why. I can't wrap my head around why I am not homeless on the streets. Trust me, you are not too broken. Jesus loves you. He died for you. He wants to be in relationship with you.
Not sure why I decided to share this. I think it's because frankly a lot of people are giving us Jesus followers a bad rap. Yes, that is how I refer to my "religion". I am a Jesus follower. I am not any one denomination, I take bits and pieces with me from each, I read my bible, I go to a bible based church, and most importantly I pray. I call out to God, I trust in Jesus and the work of the cross. That is my religion. Hear me loud and clear, there is nothing magical about walking through the doors of a church. They do not sanctify you OR anyone else in the building. At the throne of God, the foot of the cross is level. You, me, and the pastor/priest, side by side at the feet of Jesus. I still believe in going to church, but that's a whole other post in itself. LOL
I don't know who or where you are. I don't know how you found some randomly posted blog (I haven't written in YEARS) But I do know it wasn't by mistake. I believe every single person who reads this was meant to do so. I pray God will use my words to touch and maybe begin to heal your heart. I beg you. Please do not let broken people keep you from an unbroken God. Please do not judge Him and His love for you based off a human.
If you are local in Jax and you ever want to go to church with me, I would LOVE to have you join us. We attend Eleven22 Mandarin Campus @ 11:22. Not local, check out the weekly messages via our Eleven22 app. Eleven22 is a movement for all people to discover and deepen a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Also, I would love to chat with you. If you have a story you are willing to share, please feel free to comment or message me. I welcome and encourage honest and healthy discussions about faith.