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Rambling Thoughts on Faith (Seriously Could Not Come Up With a Title….Cleary….)

Ever want to be a closet Christian? Not because you don’t want people to know your a Christian so you can go hog wild at the local bar. But because you are pretty sure God is up there shaking his head that you are claiming to be on his team.

I used to have a Jesus fish sticker on my car. Back when I lived in Chicago and had to drive all around the countryside (cityside?) and back for my job. IN CHICAGO TRAFFIC. I decided after six months of barely suppressing the urge to give everyone on the road the middle finger that it was time to take the sticker off. It was really a mutual agreement between God and I that the Jesus movement was better served if I didn’t draw attention him while I was behind the wheel.

I say all this very tongue in cheek. If God is our Father, I identify with how he must feel at times. It’s like when you are at the grocery store and your child starts throwing a large temper tantrum because you refuse them the gum they spot in the check out lane. You still love them, but really hope that people don’t think that this is how your kid usually acts. “She must just be really tired, she never acts like this at home.”  But you still adore them. They are still your precious child. But maybe for just a second you hope the people around you think they belong to someone else.

What a ginormous gamble God took making us his hands and feet. I’m not even fit to be a toenail. It scares me that someone might make an eternal decision based on something I did or didn’t do. Seriously, what is God thinking? On the one hand I want to put my best face forward. Show everyone that living with God in your life equals well behaved children, a gracious heart, a forgiving spirit, the ability to resist the pull of TMZ and a lawn without patches of dirt in it. On the other, you want to let people see that Christians aren’t part of some holy country club that only the “good” people can get in to. We might let a few small sins slide, but commit any of the biggies and you are out of luck.

So it’s all pretty risky. And Christianity has taken a lot of hits from Christians acting un-Christian like. The world loves to shout “Hypocrite!” And if we run around like we got it all together it is only a matter of time before someone catches us being hypocritical. So I think we need to stop the charade. Pull back the curtain and let them see how broken we really are. Otherwise what is the appeal of Jesus? How unappealing is a guy who came for just the good people who have it all together? The last thing I need is another club I don’t feel good enough to get in to. Weren’t there enough of those in jr. high?

Comments

  1. Love this post, Jill. Wish I had something brilliant to say in response, but I don’t. The post stands alone.
    .-= Heather H´s last blog ..Home Detox: Part 1 (Where I Take Inventory and Omit) =-.

  2. The very same reason I no longer wear Jesus tshirts. (plus who makes Jesus tshirts for girls with very small print? Stare at my chest and learn about Jesus)

  3. This is so great! I was a draft version of saying something similar, only it wasn’t coming out as clearly as you said it. I also don’t have anything brilliant to add to it, I think it’s something all Christians feel at one time or another (or all the time!)
    .-= MamaB´s last blog ..PPD Nightmares: Preview =-.

  4. Excellent post. I could not agree with you more. Sometimes, I think that God must be pointing at me and telling his angels, “yeah, this is my most difficult one HANDS DOWN”. Beautifully written post. Thanks.
    .-= Tricia´s last blog ..TTC Craziness =-.

  5. The pastor of my church back in Atlanta used to remind us, “this is a school for sinners, not a museum for saints.” Maybe we need a Christian bumper sticker/t-shirt bearing some message to that effect? It’s a tightrope, isn’t it? I’m surrounded by non-believers and I feel like I do a fairly poor job of “representin'” at times because I have a hard time finding the right balance between being IN the world and APART from it.
    .-= Megan (FriedOkra)´s last blog ..All That’s Left is the Dirty Laundry =-.

  6. Great post! I prefer to call myself a follower of Christ, because as you pointed out, lots of people have given Christians a bad rap by acting very un-Christlike.
    .-= Wendy (The Local Cook)´s last blog ..Introducing the Food & Faith Challenge =-.

  7. Amen! How often do you see someone with a Jesus fish on their bumper driving like a jerk? I just shake my head. Along the same lines as Megan’s comment, my dad always says that the church is a hospital for the sick. The healthy don’t need church…just the sick. Well, obviously, that’s all of us. What about how we treat store clerks when the line is moving slowly or they aren’t as helpful as we THINK they should be? What about when our children are driving us OVER THE EDGE and we just want to scream at them? But for the GRACE of God go I…
    .-= Devion´s last blog ..A little bit of nothing =-.

  8. I hear you, sister! And, um, I never did put the Jesus fish sticker on my car…
    .-= Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect´s last blog ..Who wants a worm, anyway? =-.

  9. Couldn’t agree more. Beautifully written.
    Kelli @ SustainingCreativity
    .-= Kelli´s last blog ..Easy Turkey and/or Bacon Wraps =-.

  10. I completely agree with you, but I do want to point one thing out: Christians are notorious for being some of the most unhappy people on earth. Why is this when we have the MOST to be joyful about? So while I believe we should be open and honest about our shortcomings, we also need to strive to be JOYFUL about our lives and our faith!
    .-= Emily Kay´s last blog ..Random Happenings =-.

  11. Oh, and I’m speaking to myself more than anyone…I struggle with my attitude on a DAILY basis. :(
    .-= Emily Kay´s last blog ..Random Happenings =-.

  12. Ha, Ha, Ha. I know exactly what you are saying. I just might have to include this in My New Favorite (which I am still working on.) I’ll call it, a blog I might have written (or wished I’d written). Thanks for your honesty. I love it! Especially since I feel the same.
    .-= LaVonne´s last blog ..Glimpse into Our Conversation =-.

  13. Great post! That’s all I got- you said it all.

  14. Karen says:

    Yes, exactly. The club mentality (We are IN, you are OUT) trivializing faith, truth and really even heaven – though I don’t think too much about heaven…it’s not my main reason for being a Christ follower or anything. I think the culture war is a big mistake, because the “Christian” response to our culture has been to retreat to our clubhouse and only read the right books, listen to the right music and say the right words. How does this help anyone? And, doesn’t it get dull and legalistic for us too? I hate it when I bore myself!

  15. Karen says:

    And, just to add another thought, I think representing Jesus is way more than about “behaving in public” it is more relational – so much harder & messier, as you say. So, thanks for this post. I found it encouraging!
    .-= Karen´s last blog ..A week of dinners through the eyes of my tween boy =-.

  16. Love this post. So true in so many ways! Have to admit there are few things I believe in enough to put on the back of my car. Actually, I think there are so many things I believe that just putting a few words on my car seems like an injustice to all that I have to say. I simply couldn’t sum up who I am in a single bumper sticker. Case in point…wanted to pop in and say ” Awesome post!” Look how many words it took to do that! Ha HA. Have a great day!
    Jenny V

  17. Jill, thank you for sharing these thoughts. As a non-Christian on the outside looking in, I have wondered why the charade exists. Everyone can learn from each other’s sins.
    .-= Laura (@chambanalaura)´s last blog ..The Frog Prince – A Ticket Giveaway =-.

    • Thank you for your perspective. I truly believe a lot more people would see the joy in being a Christian if we were doing a better job of living like Jesus.

  18. Liberty says:

    Oh yeah…you took the words right out of my heard. Thanks for your transparency. Blessings!

  19. Liberty says:

    That was HEART…:)

  20. Andrea says:

    Great post. I couldn’t agree more.

  21. Good Stuff Jill!! On Sunday, our pastor reminded me of something: God DIED on the Cross with His Body … What are we doing to glorify Him with ours??

  22. AMEN.

  23. What a great reminder. It’s too easy to think that people are holding themselves out to be perfect, rather than on the road to it.
    .-= Katy´s last blog ..It’s coming…I promise =-.

  24. Good work, and good words! A lot of this has been on my mind and I’ve been really challenged by this lately.
    .-= Jen@BigBinder´s last blog ..Things To Do =-.

  25. Michelle says:

    This was the first post of yours that I’ve read and let me just say – – – having lived in Chicago, I’m with ya! Jesus asked me to take my sticker off too!

  26. I agree with you- I just think the tricky part is when we start resting in our “brokenness” as who we are- rather than redeemed in Christ and called to holiness, ya know? Of course we’ve missed the mark, but at the same time, we can’t use “I’m a hopeless sinner” as a cop-out for a spirit-filled life (not implying that you’re saying this, btw). It’s a fine line, but looking at it, I’d rather be where you;re standing than with the Pharisee thanking God I’m not a sinner.
    .-= Emily Malone´s last blog ..Give-Away! =-.

  27. Wow. That was really well said.
    .-= CJ´s last blog ..Focus… =-.

  28. This is a great post! Lots to think about here.
    .-= amy2boys´s last blog ..Weekly Winners – Pinewood Derby =-.

  29. following God means resisting the pull of TMZ?

    uh-oh…

    thoughtful post.
    .-= suzannah´s last blog ..the eco-nomical baby guide (and giveaway) =-.

  30. Excellent post! I think we’ve all felt that way at least once or twice…I know I have.
    .-= Tree´s last blog ..Tasty Tuesday =-.

  31. I loved the imagery of pulling back the curtain to see how broken we really are. Amen to that one!
    .-= Tiffany´s last blog ..Looking Great Just Got Easy (Guy and Eva Jewelry GIVEAWAY!!!) =-.

  32. Never, ever posted anywhere before but LOVE this train of thought. There is a great song out now from Mandissa called,”What if we were real.” A great tie in to this topic.

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