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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Speculating On How The World Sees Christians

I know I have been trying to stick to fiction- but I did name my blog speculative shorts, so lets do some real world speculating for a bit.

My husband brought home the movie God's Not Dead for us to watch with our kids over supper today. Near the end of the movie many of the characters were present in a christian music concert. These concerts are not just about music, they are intended to help spread the message that Jesus loves us, died for us, and wants us to believe in him. The concert seen at the end made me realize something else as well. I realized that I feel like I prefer Christian concerts over going to church. At first I was mortified to admit this to myself.

Until I took the moment to speculate and analyze why.

Everyone at these concerts is made to feel welcome and they are excited to come worship in one accord- no matter how differently they are dressed, no matter if they are in dresses or shorts, no matter if they drive fancy cars or can barely afford the 10$. No one judges, no one cares- EVERYONE is there for one purpose- to worship God.

How many times have I worried that I need to buy another "church" dress because I only had two left that fit and it would look awful to show up to church in the clothes I wore last weekend.

Why do I feel that way? (I know I'm not the only one) For as much as we preach acceptance, we still get dressed up in our "sunday best". Its been ingrained in us for generations! We still make sure our church meetings follow the same perfect pattern. The children musn't cry or they are ushered away to far off corners. The preacher and deacons must be smartly dressed (in a long sleeve suit in summer). In some cases the choir wears extra robes on top of their clothes which serves to equalize them visually but also to make them appear that much more "perfect". Everything is neat prim and proper.

A K-Love Christian Concert- If we can worship like this
 why do we doll up for church?
photo credit: thoughtquotient.com via photopin cc
 I wonder how many people have stopped short from wandering into church on sunday just because they didn't feel like they could fit in? How many were afraid they would stand out like a sore thumb or be given "looks" because they were too sloppy?

Is it possible that our traditions, formulas, and "sunday" best is actually turning away the people that really need the message. This is, of course, accentuated when we leave that afternoon and jump into our shorts and tshirts and act like normal frumpy human beings. (Ladies we all know you are dying to take those heels and stockings off!)

But WHY NOT?! God loves us just the way we are! Why shouldn't we worship him how we are? Dress decently, yes- but like you NORMALLY dress. Not some perfect china doll or perfect prince charming.

I wonder if this might make the difference in our goal to reach those who really need the message. A difference enough to realize that yes- it doesn't matter what life circumstances you are from- God loves you JUST the way you are.

You dress comfortably in your own home right? Well, since God is our father and sees us even at our worst- why do we put on a show, a facade for him on Sunday? I found I feel more connected to God when I am comfortable.

Not when I am trying to paint myself (or my children) up in uncomfortable clothes that I only use once a week.

Speculation for thought.

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