About a month or so ago I had to fly up to NJ last minute to see my Dad in the hospital before I went to Dallas, TX for business. Unfortunately I think everyone knows how things turned out with my father but this is a little side story while I was visiting that weekend prior to his death. It is a little long but hang in there.
I got up there on Saturday night and saw my dad, at this point not even knowing that weekend would be the last time I saw him.
So on Sunday morning I was curious about his faith and was planning to talk to him about it. A Catholic Minister of the Eucharist (not a priest) comes in and asks if I would like to take communion and pray for my dad, I said yes absolutely. Well he asks my father if he would like to do it and lays out a perfect biblical explanation of salvation, I was surprised and it was awesome.
A quick background before I go further… I grew up Catholic and although many churches I went to fit the stereotypes of Catholic I also knew not all did and there are some great Catholic churches out there and have found myself sticking up for Catholics when certain conversations arise.
Ok back to the story, after he talks to my father he turns to me and asks when was the last time I had confession with a priest, in my brain I thought uh-oh, here we go. My father has typically pushed religion away and would not talk about it and I was afraid of how this conversation was going to go and if it would confirm my fathers feelings more. So I said “I don’t go to Catholic Church anymore, I go to a Baptist Church now”, he asked “So are you Baptist?” I said, “Yes I am a member but I really just consider myself Christian.” I was then told that I could not do Communion with my father. I told him Baptist do Communion (Lord’s Supper) also so I did not understand. He said he can’t give it to me without me confessing to a Priest. I then told him that is not required biblically although it does say and I agree that we need accountability. I then stopped and bit my tongue because I realized I was not getting anywhere and the last thing I wanted was my father to be even more turned off by the mention of God. And it was very hard to hold back as this person talked for another 5-10 minutes.
So why does there need to be such division between Christian religion, what kind of example are we setting to non believers? It is sad to think that we allow this stuff to show more than the good!
What do people think about when:
- Different Christian religions argue with each other on who is right on a topic?
- Or when a religion is so caught up in tradition it misses out on being relevant to a generation that needs to hear about hope in God.
- Or when a church group tries to boycott a NON-Christian company for acting like a non-Christian company?
- Or see someone calling out or condemning a sin when they are in the midst of one themselves, although maybe a more “acceptable” one like overeating or gossiping.
When this stuff and others go on we all look like hypocrites. I am not saying abandon some of the hard lessons we all need to hear for the sake of looking good, but can’t we be consistent on the important black and white stuff and still show love/compassion through it? We need to stop getting so caught up on some of the lesser things that may not make a difference in eternity so people see a difference and want to know more. Unfortunately it is more of the bad, distracting, hypocritical stuff that makes the headlines than the good. We as Christians will make mistakes even when our intentions are good but let’s stay focused on what God would really want us to be and do and see what happens.
Not sure if this post made sense or I rambled or if you think I am right or wrong but it was in my brain pushing itself out so there it is. Leave a comment if you want.