Do You KNOW who I am?
“Yeah, but how will they feel about Ronnie huh? They won’t like her a bit”. Merrill after leaving yet another church this morning.
“Where is my DAUGHTER?!” The church misplaced Duchess
Church Watch 2017
I grew up around these people. Not in the literal sense, but in the figurative sense of being raised a Baptist. The Church we visited was an Independent Fundamental Baptist church, and as far as friendly goes, they’re in the lead. From the moment our car pulled up in parking lot, we were NOTICED….Trust that. Yet it wasn’t a bad notice, it was strangely refreshing. The other two churches we’ve visited almost acted like we were supposed to be there….I mean, I don’t think a handful of congregants even thought we were new. I get now how The World feels, expect I am not of the WORLD, I am…for all Intensive Purposes (I know) one of theirs. Church Watch 2017…I really liked this church. It’s too bad Merrill did not feel the same.
So they lost our daughter. At the end of service, when we all went outside into the wrath of God’s heat (It was 103 at noon ya’ll), one of the very friendly parishioners (the Youth Pastor) offered to walk with Merrill to go retrieve Duchess. Sweetness had already made himself at home on the BB court with the pastor’s son, but when Merrill and the Youth Director walked out, Duchess was nowhere to be found. No worries, she was probably walked over to the main building to meet with the outgoing worshippers….NOPE, not there either, and I don’t know if it was the HELL outside, or the fact that they LOST our daughter, I yelled to all gathered outside, (members and new visitors alike), “Where is my DAUGHTER?!”…..”Don’t worry, we’ll find her” the pastor’s wife offered, but even in that…there was little comfort. “We’ll FIND her? How did you LOSE her?” was my only response. In the end, the SS Teacher had merely switched classes…and there sat Duchess….as if her parents weren’t ready to kill….All’s Well that ends well….that’s what God always says….but it isn’t…..
And so, the message this am, well both of them, was ON POINT. This church, with its very friendly, if not absent-minded, fellowship was one of the more conservative sects of the Baptist branch. Yes, Rock and Roll is evil, Elvis had a dirty minded pelvis, and honestly, alcohol is of the devil, but those aren’t entirely deal breakers for me. Know what I mean? I felt comfortable in this church, because it’s the same Doctrine I grew up with. The issue lie, like Merrill said, in the knowledge that were they to find out about Ronnie, they’d have my ass in sling so fast it would make your head spin, and that’s because they lacked Grace. The Bible isn’t exactly liberal itself. God was very clear in His Will, wishes and demands, and yet, like Abe, God offers us compromise….He knows we’re going to screw up, like Paul said, “So what then? We sin more, to receive more Grace?“….No of course not, but this Church, with its on fleek teachings has no room for grey area, but it makes me question if that’s really the model we should follow? I’m willing to cut some slack for the Duchess debacle, because to Err is indeed Human….but if I were to put their teachings back onto them, I would not go back next week.
Even Christians have a hard time with the Bible, because there’s so much we either don’t understand, agree with, or simply don’t want to follow. Christ, in His infinite wisdom, tried to answer the question, “What do we do first?” in plain Red Text…”Love thy neighbor“….He told us, “No greater love has he, then the one who’d die for his brother” (I paraphrase), and so, while homosexuality, alcohol, cussing, some versions of sex, and thoughts may indeed be sin…the trick is to try….to keep trying to be the Christian God want’s you to be. I tried to do that….that’s all I’ve ever tried to show you, is that for me, I’m willing to err on the side of Grace, over the side of obedience. Like the snake story Trump pontificated numerous times on the campaign trail, I have been bitten…several times as a matter of face, but I’m HUMAN. I may give some of you the impression that God is like a BK, in which I can have the Doctrine my way, but all I ever tried to do, was show you that we…as The Brethren…screw up. I did like this church…it may be the first time in forever that I didn’t look at my phone while the preacher was giving some good preaching, but the conservative message, was missing the one small element of the Faith that I hold so dearly…The human element….They were wonderful people, very diverse, and had a genuine desire to serve and love God….but in the end, my deal breaker is, if you cannot love and accept Ronnie…as fault-filled and flawed as she is, I can’t fellowship with you, because this is Ronnie. I don’t know how to be any one else than what I am….and I adore that there are some, like Becky, who love and accept me for and as ME. I really miss RBC…they knew Ronnie, and loved her anyway. Church Watch 2017 continues….but this church was the best by far,….so maybe…we’re getting there. Be Blessed.
Remember you set the Tone, you ARE the Example. BE KIND to each other. Show GRACE and MERCY to all those who cross your path today. With your Daily Affirmations complete, enjoy your Sunday.