Some days I wake up and feeling like I’m living in the middle of the most twisted love story. Hollywood wouldn’t pick it up, unless they could market it as some depressing drama.
I can hear the pitch now: “Twilight meets The Notebook meets Gone Girl meets When Harry Met Sally. Also, it’s going to make no sense, but that’s the point, get it? It’s an artistic commentary on love, it only makes sense if you’re smart enough (or dumb enough to think you’re smart enough).”
Somebody has got to be in a room saying stuff like this as they churn out Christian culture. It’s just too unreal to actually believe and Heaven knows it didn’t come from…Heaven.
Line drawing, love with condition, transactional relationships. These things do not become holy or counter cultural if we slap christian words on them and spin bible verses around them.
Yet we do it every day. And when people point to our inconsistencies we point to the bible and say Jesus is offensive. It’s not about us.
We shame discussion into submission and no one stops to think maybe the most offensive thing is the way we shut down asking Jesus to enter into something hard because Jesus is offensive.
No one seems to take offense every time we take God’s name in vein when we slap the Christian brand on the patterns of the world and sit back comfortably to justify being living injustices because the bible tells me so.
Dicing words and slicing sentences, building our own castle of logic, we would go to the grave claiming it is built on Truth. But the only thing that looks like the kingdom here is the trash we take out.
How often are we are too busy, clutching at what we think we know, preaching freedom and love while erecting makeshift crosses atop the dams we build to tell Jesus how his redemptive blood can flow, and how it cannot.
You’d think dying on hills was some kind of right of passage. Prepare for battle, kill everything in your path because the world is out to get you. Yell louder, fight harder, prove that you are devoted to the savior. It’s you or them. Do not give up ground because hell is reigning down. God needs you to show them love through hate because sometimes true love feels like playing paintball with a nail gun. It’s worth it for the price of a soul. They’ll thank us someday.
We’re all made in the image of God here, as long as you look like us.
The more hills we conquer to prove to the world the kingdom is here, the more we bury that there was a death on a hill that conquered all death. There was only one display of love that involved nails, and they weren’t aimed at anyone.
For every moment we choose to die on a hills that worship a carefully created Jesus we have built from the comfort of our pews, the wild, untamed Jesus stands in the shadow of the hills ready to greet us and swallow us up with his love.
I do not want to be a people that builds dams instead of tearing them down.
I do not want to be a people that spends more time talking about what hills we would die on for Jesus than what valleys I would live in with Jesus.
I want to be a people of love without condition.
How wide can the edges of our tent get?
How many chairs can we fit around this table?
How many tears can we wipe?
How many times can I point you toward who you are created to be?
How big, and beautiful, and holy can we get as we step further and further into the kingdom?
Jesus, teach us to love without condition. Teach us to love while expecting nothing in return. Teach us to see the world as you have created it. Teach us to not fear that you are so small that this whole thing will crumble if we start acting like you mean the things you said. Teach us to know that we aren’t important enough to ruin the kingdom of God. Teach us to know that if the kingdom looks too much like what we see when we look in the mirror, it’s probably not the kingdom. Teach us how to build bigger tables, not bigger walls.