Friday, August 03, 2007

What I learned from church

(that turned out not to be true, and what I'm learning now)

(reposted from

Glenn Hager kindly invited me to participate in his synchroblog. Thanks Glen!

So a coupla lists–and a tiny bit of a justice and compassion slant (I’m not making this stuff up)

What I learned in church:

  • Sex is mainly for procreation.
  • America is the greatest nation on earth.
  • Alchohol is evil. period.
  • Using contraception is almost always a dumb, and perhaps even bad, idea.
  • The U.N. is evil.
  • Homosexuality is a far worse sin than gluttony.
  • We’re right, and they’re wrong.
  • God created the United States.
  • Public Education is evil.
  • The King James Version is the *only* right translation of the Bible into English.
  • The Bible is about principles.
  • Most of the stuff that came out of the civil rights movement was bad because it destroyed personal freedom.
  • Roman Catholicism is evil.
  • You can follow Jesus by going to church once a week and praying a prayer. And you can even pray the prayer in secret
  • It’s not hard for the rich to get into the kindom of heaven. It’s easy.
  • Forgiveness means you have to forget what the perp did, and pretend it didn’t really hurt you.
  • The dichotomy between good and evil is simple and easy to see.

And what I’m learning lately–well, I don’t got do church so much anymore. But from lovely Monkfish, and Brian McLaren, and Jim Henderson, and Seattle Mennonite Church, and Dan Allender, and perhaps even Union a bit, I’m learning:

  • It’s more important to be kind than right.
  • You don’t have to buy into the idea that billions of people are going to burn in hell forever to be a christian.
  • God’s not stressed or freaked out by gnarly pagan ideas and rituals.
  • God cares more about the poor, the broken, the raped, the starving, the whole hurting world, than I do, and she certainly cares more about these people than she does about … stupid little doctrinal debates between various sects of the church in America.
  • God doesn’t need the bible to talk to me.
  • Actions are more important than words.
  • I can make a difference.
  • The Bible is about stories.
  • God likes the idea of people giving power away to other people. Prodigiously. And Bit by bit.
  • Real christians have to at least take into consideration the idea of war tax protest.
  • Jesuits rock.
  • Nuclear weapons are evil.
  • Following Jesus is hella hard, and involves more than … openly changing your lifestyle.
  • It’s okay to hate someone who hurt you.
  • Good and evil are nuanced, and as humans we can’t really escape being victims and perps.
What about you?

And here's links to some of the other synchroblog posts on the same subject.

Glenn @ Re-dreaming the Dream: Synchroblog (Introduction)

Alan @ The Assembling of the Church: Here I Am To Worship.

Heather @ A Deconstructed Christian: 15 Things I Learned From and Another 15 I Am Learning Lately

Jim @ Lord, I Believe; Help My Unbelief : Some Ecclesiastical Paradoxes

Lew @ The Pursuit: It’s A Grace vs. Works Thing

Lyn @ Beyond the 4 Walls: Learning To be “Proper”

Paul @ One For The Road : A Gracious Voice

Sonja @ Calacirian: Losing Her Religion and Keeping Her Faith

Benjamin @ Justice and Compassion: Pithy and Provocative

Julie @ Onehandclapping: Faith, Certainty, and Tom Cruise

Aaron @ Regenerate: Hope

Monte @ Monte Asbury’s Blog: Jesus Doesn’t Matter Much

Rachael @ Justice and Compassion Rachael Stanton

Glenn @ Re-dreaming the Dream: Unsaid Communication

Glenn @ Re-dreaming the Dream: Reflections About Refugees (Summary Reflection)

1 comment:

byron smith said...

Your first list was scary and sad.