I think it’s funny that I get annoyed by Christianity.
I know. Did you have to read that again?
If you didn’t know, I am a Christian (I prefer believer, but Christian is acceptable). I was raised in church, even before I was born. Mom and I went to two different churches in Michigan (where I’m from). I remember her saying she knew there was something more than what the church was teaching.
I didn’t grow up religous. Mom never got me with the, “What would Jesus do?” every time I played a video game, or listened to the raideo. She didn’t monitor what I read or who I hung out with (because I didn’t hang out with anyone except my childhood friends, whom she knew). She trusted me and I never gave her a reason not to.
She never brought up sin every two seconds. What she did say was how she felt about something and why, and she let me decide what to do with that information. For example, she read the first Harry Potter book with me, and explained that witchcraft was biblically wrong and why. But she never stopped me from reading them or watching the movies.
In a way, maybe she didn’t think she could. She told me about her life all the time, all of the things she did when she was younger. She always told me, “Don’t be like me. Don’t make the same mistakes that I did.” She wasn’t scary about it, just honest to the point that made me decide I didn’t want that life.
When we moved to Virginia, we joined a church that was actually pretty decent. The people were nice for the most part, and the message was tolerable. The only thing I didn’t like was when I went to youth group and was told that I was…ahem, poop because I sinned. Needless to say, but I’ll say it anyway, I didn’t go back to youth group.
The other thing I didn’t like was that, because I was a Christian and because I lived in Viriginia, I had to go to the famous Christian college. I didn’t want to go to college, but even Mom told me I had to go there (that was until we went to a concert there and she heard one of the professors, who was preaching, be really rude to the musicians who he was taking time from because he wasn’t done and everyone needed to hear what he had to say.) Mom did not want me going there after that.
After moving back to Virginia from Tennesse, we found a church that we really liked. I got along with a lot of the people, we liked the atmosphere, and the messages were perfect. We went there for a few years before we started to see things we didn’t like, including, but not limited to: the idolism of the pastor, the popularity constests, and the age descrimination. We left for a while, but decided to go back and give it another chance. We stayed again, but left faster when we saw that it hadn’t changed.
I went back after my mother passed. It was a good message (the music was better though). I went again the following week. That was good too. The funny thing is, I don’t remember what they were. I remember the very first message I heard from the pastor, in 2014 I think. But not very many after that.
The following week it shut down due to COVID. And I spent the next year distancing myself from church, sermons/messages, and God, altogether. I wanted to discover who I was away from Him. I felt like I was starting my Christian walk over.
What I discovered was, Christianity is annoying. Christians are annoying. Churches are annoying. “All are welcome,” has turned into, “Your attendance is welcome,” but not necessarily you as a person. More like, your number.
My cousin asked me if I was going back to church. I said no. She said it’d be good for me to find one. I wanted to tell her how desensitized I am to church, and how the thought of going back makes me cringe.
There is one pastor I do go back to though. I’ve been listening to him for almost 14 years (wow! I didn’t realize that). I can tell you so much stuff I’ve learned from him. Unfortunately, I can’t go to his church, because he’s in Singapore. He does have a satilite church in Texas that I want to go to at some point.
Am I a Christian? Yes. Will I stop reading the Bible or listening to messages? No. I just might not be stepping into a chruch for a while. I also won’t be trying to convert you into becoming a Christian either. I will give my options on things from a biblical perspective, but I will in no way tell you that you have to believe me.
You’re on your jouney. And I’m still on mine.