Tuesday, October 2, 2012

'Well you're not very religious then, are you'

As you may know, I've started a new job. Well, actually I've started two new jobs. As well my OPP adventures (which you can read about here) I have transferred with a well known pizza chain. As with all big chains, it is eerie being in a different store. It's strange and new, but also mostly the same. There are even some characters at the new place that remind me of people from my old one, very parallel universe-y.

My second shift in, and I met one of the deputy managers. He had heard that I was religious.

"Are you very religious?" he asked me. I asked him to clarify what he meant by that.

"Do you believe in the whole creation in 7 days thing?" I said that I didn't, that I believe that God's fingerprints are in evolution.

"Ok, do you believe in Homosexuality?" I followed with, "Well, you obviously believe it exists, but are you ok with it?" I told him that I was fine with it.

"Oh, well you're not very religious then, are you..." Now this got me thinking.

An (self confessed) atheist sees me as 'not very religious' because I'm not a Creationist or anti-homosexuality. Is this how 'religion' is seen by the world outside of the Church? Unfortunately, I think it is for many people. The fact that my other job is working with a homeless charity, offering support to those in need, doesn't play a part. Neither does the fact I try not to swear, go to church most weeks, and have a personal relationship with my God and my Saviour. Jesus didn't follow the strict dogma of the religious elites of the time. He worked of the Sabbath, healing and serving. He turned theological understandings of the scripture on its head. Maybe people of the time said Jesus wasn't very religious. (I must clarify, I am not claiming to be Jesus!)

It has been interesting following some of the media around the attempts to find a new Archbishop of Canterbury. I don't know much about it, but I know at some candidates are more conservative when it comes to women and homosexuality, others are more liberal. I don't know the theology of any of them. The world sees the issues in the church that often make the church look bad.

I think this is a challenge, and a great opportunity, for the Church. It's time we took what it really means to be Christians and get that message out. In the love and salvation of God, there is no Jew or Gentile, no rich or poor, not slave or free, man or women, gay or straight. All can know God, all can be saved. This is the fundamental of my faith. This is why I am a Christian. And if that isn't religious, I don't know what is.

So, what are you going to do about getting the true meaning of Christ's love out into the world?

No comments:

Post a Comment