There was a time, not so very long ago, when I would frown in baffled confusion whenever some other blogger would write something along the lines of, “Sorry I’ve been so quiet lately, there’s a bunch of stuff going on in my life that I can’t really blog about.”
I didn’t get that. For one thing (I would say to myself), isn’t that the whole point of blogging? To talk about all the stuff that’s going on in our lives?
For another thing, my favorite bloggers, the ones I follow voraciously and miss when they’re quiet too long, tend to be the sort of unabashed oversharers who will write in great detail about, say, the capricious workings of their lady-plumbing or the bizarre sociopathic tendencies of their cat. How could there be ANYTHING that these folks would be too embarrassed to blog about??
Well, now I get it. It’s one thing to place your own personal tragedies and comedies on display for all the world to see. It’s a whole ‘nother thing to drag other members of your community into the spotlight with you.
I’ve never really been part of a community before, so this was seriously an eye-opening revelation for me. Bear with me as I marvel at the intricate and fragile web of diplomacy and artifice that apparently holds modern civilization together. Pardon my transfixed silence as I come to terms with the constant manipulations, the casual betrayals, the almost unconscious every-man-for-himself jockeying for position.
Okay, that sounds a bit melodramatic. I haven’t lost faith in humanity’s capacity for goodness, and I still believe that the overwhelming majority of people really do mean well. After all my experiences of the past year, how could I not? But just between you and me, Dear Internet, I am beginning to lose patience with people who KNOW the way Christians are supposed to behave and yet continually justify their own selfish or just-plain-mean choices.
There have been three or four separate, unrelated incidents in the past couple of months, all involving me and folks from my church, that have left me scratching my head at the total disregard some humans have for the basic rights and feelings of other humans. It would be an overstatement to say that I was actually hurt by any of the incidents, because, let’s face it, I don’t even know what it would take to hurt me anymore. Here’s hoping I never have to find out. But I’m beginning to understand why so many good Christians don’t care much for church people: you get all the normal flaws and imperfections of regular people, PLUS the breathtakingly blatant hypocrisy, which adds that lovely touch of irony!
Anyway. I’ve probably said more than enough already, so I’ll stop grousing now.
I love my church. I love the people there. I love being a part of helping it grow. I do not love everything that goes on there, but I think that’s probably true of any community.
Seriously though, can’t we all just get along?
Wherever two or more are gathered, at least one of them will behave poorly.
It may be presumptuous, but I know how you feel. There has been something happening in my church lately that just shows all the ugly underbelly of the church. You might enjoy a book called “When Bad Christians Happen to Good People”. I hope things get better soon.
It just sucks to be human sometimes. I have been studying altruism and I have come to the conclusion that the definition in my book is not a definition at all but a statement of a type of behavior a human being can never achieve. There is always motivation to do good, fill in the blank for the reason, some reasons like “because I can do good” seem altruistic until you see how many people are watching the person who says it. On the other hand, some people do good and invite others to join in the merriment and feel good process, thus the goodness is shared. I know you have experienced both, and probably both to the extreme. You said “I haven’t lost faith in humanity’s capacity for goodness”. The capacity is very limited and mostly selfish, in my opinion. There is plenty of ego involved in goodness too. I think that I rely more on the power of the Holy Spirit working in people’s lives to experience the goodness of others, regardless of how selfish the motive seems. I think we all should get along and stop the emotional and mental game playing; honesty is the best policy, but there are some folks out there that just couldn’t handle it, if you know what I mean. You are right where you are supposed to be, girl. Keep listening and paying attention to what the Lord is speaking to you…don’t pay much attention to all the other garbage falling from the lips of friends or even foes. It is all just a distraction to keep you from thinking about the glory of God, and He is glorious, isn’t he, oh isn’t he? 🙂
You think you get tired of the needless games people play, insecure is the human creature. So the best policy is to keeps no books on others and refuse to participate in the books others write about you. Take me as I am in progress or never mind I don’t need the drama. If you have a handfull of true friends then don’t push your luck and love the ones your with.
Aron — Word, Bro.
Philippa — Thank you, I’ll check that out. I hope things get better for you and your church too. :^)
Brooke — I hear what you’re saying but I have to believe that genuine Christian love does motivate…well, maybe not MOST people, but at least MANY people to live by the Golden Rule freely and sincerely. That should be MORE true within a church, not less. And this might be a controversial stand, but I think that if someone doesn’t have enough love in their heart to sincerely try to treat others as they would like to be treated, at least most of the time (everyone slips up now and then), then maybe they should be in church as learners, students, and not in positions of ministry to others.
Pastor — That’s my philosophy these days, but I do think there needs to be a certain level of connection and trust within the ministries of a church, for it to truly be effective. A house divided against itself cannot stand, and all that.
When I was younger I thought that as I got older, and others got older, wisdom would replace idiotic behavior. It doesn’t. As Pastor indicated, you will have had very few true friends at the end of your life. Human nature is not a pretty thing to behold for the mostpart. I have learned to turn a blind eye to the uglyness in people and try to enjoy the good that I do see in them. God must be forgiving, because not a single one of us is perfect (also as Pastor reminds us). Many of us have been taken in by people that we thought were friends, simply to find out that they were not who and what we thought they were. The Church gives us a chance to worship together, a chance to ask questions and find answers that give us peace. Remember, there is very little “getting along” happening in this entire world. We can’t be little beauty queens wishing for World Peace. It will never happen.