Back in the early nineties, REM had a hit song called “Losing my Religion”. I was slowly turning back to my “religion” during that time and the song struck a chord with me. I found out later that religion in this case means losing one’s civility not the more common meaning of the word. But, in actuality, religion and civility do have similar meanings. Certain things are right others are wrong, and there can be hell to pay when these borders are crossed.
Lately, I have felt like I am losing my religion. It’s not because I have grown further away from God, but because I have been drawn closer to his presence. I know that the Bible says to gather together as a fellowship of believers and worship, But I don’t feel that the corporate worship that I am subjected to each Sunday necessarily fits that bill. I feel that as though God is calling me out of the church building and into the Church. How can I fell led spiritually by a man who stirs up such controversy within our church?
The obligation of sitting in our pew has overshadowed the omnipotent presence of God in the people there. I want to know and love God more fully each and every day, but this very act of love, the very thing I am called and created to do becomes more difficult when I am in church. The polity of the pulpit has overshadowed presence of the most high in our worship. I no longer enjoy my Sundays, but can’t take steps to rectify this situation because my husband doesn’t see a problem. I can’t sit back and learn the law anymore without hearing something about the Grace that covers my sin.
In order to gain a greater understanding of the wonder of God, I need to seek out the people that God has called me minister to. And it isn’t the frozen chosen of one particular denomination, it’s the neglected and unnoticed of this world. How can I sit comfortably in my chair every Sunday and not be stirred by the cold and huddled masses that occupy the lowest rung of the social ladder? I must find the strength within me to Lose my Religion so I can gain for his kingdom. The micromanaging pastor that dictates ultimatums without compassion, can’t be all that this world has to offer.
The call to a more “extreme”, less traditional church is on my heart. Wherever two or more are gathered in his name, there is church. That intimacy that is lacking within the walls of my church can be found under a bridge overpass, in the homeless shelter, or drinking coffee with a friend. I desire to please God not man and so much of the pomp of the common church is to please man. I guess the longing to do more seems to be getting squelched by the boundaries implemented by the church board. When you have to gain permission before any action takes place in the local congregation, momentum is lost and opportunity is squandered. When God says go, I want to go.
I guess I just find it difficult to feed God’s sheep when they are on a spiritual diet of piety. A ravenous hunger for God has overcome me and I am starving.
I am a Christian, a wife, a mom, and a part-time basket case who wants to be a full time writer.