Wednesday Haterade: Serious Blogger Is Serious, Or The Things I Really Hate Edition

randomlychad  —  August 16, 2011 — 11 Comments
'2-12b-ponder' photo (c) 2009, Waifer X - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Hi! I know you came here for humorous send-up in tribute to a fellow blogger. Believe me: there are plenty of folks out there to “hate.” (And their time is indeed coming).

That said, today I’d like to get some things off my chest. What I mean is: today I’ll be sharing some things I really hate. For reals–no joke. These are things that piss me off.

(Forgive me if I sound curmudgeonly, but I’m entitled; I’m 42). 😉

I hate that there seems to be an epidemic of just plain not listening in the church. What I mean is that there are great masses of folks who are far more interested in converting others to their points of view than they are in expressing Christian love.

We all do it, right? Assume that we’re right, and brother–or sister–so-and-so is just out to lunch for not seeing things our way.

Let me give you a personal example:

I was once in an accountability group. We were a group of four men in close confederation, sharing the deep things of our hearts, sharing our struggles, and victories. One time, I expressed the opinion that the Earth could be old–rather than young. Note what I didn’t say: that I believed in evolution. (Think “Gap Theory” here). These treasured brothers proceeded to call my orthodoxy oito question. Apparently, my conviction was on the wrong side of a line in the sand I didn’t know had been drawn. I didn’t realize that the age of the Earth had become a litmus test for a biblical faith.

My friends put me in the hot seat over this. They weren’t interested in hearing what I had to say, why I had come to my conviction. They were more interested in me accepting their POV.

When that didn’t happen…

The group dissolved. None of the relationships were ever the same again.

And I learned not to share my convictions.

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More recently, I was again called on the carpet by some friends–very well-meaning friends–about my love of all things Potter. And again, I don’t think they were really interested in hearing me out–but rather in telling me why Harry Potter is “teh evils,” and that J.K. Rowling is nothing but a nasty witchy witch. I listened patiently, respectfully, but couldn’t seem to make them understand that I read for the themes, the symbolism, the archetypes. I really do see parallels to the Gospel story, and know the difference between fantasy and reality. And, no, I don’t think reading about magic is the same as practicing magic (which is forbidden).

Ok, pop quiz folks: did, or did not, Charles Dickens have Ebeneezer Scrooge consort with spirits? Yet nobody seems to have a problem with A Christmas Carol. We all seem to get that it’s about learning to love before it’s too late.

Likewise, shocking–I know, but true–Harry Potter blesses me. Yet, well-meaning folks can’t seem to leave well enough alone. I’ve got to see it their way.

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These are but two examples from my life; I’ll bet there are many, many from yours.

You know what I really hate at such times as this is the Scriptural cherry-picking that goes on. For instance, Deuteronomy gets trotted out (“thou shalt not suffer a witch to live”), but Romans 14-15 (and 1 Corinthians 8-10) gets ignored. Which I think is much more germane. Paul talks about meat sacrificed to idols, Christian liberty, and love. I get that people have a hang-up about Harry, and accordingly I don’t go out of my way to share my convictions (I wrote of this last week). I learned my lesson from the failed accountability group. But I expect to be afforded the same respect.

All that said, I hate that I do it, too: I cherry-pick–I proof text–because I have a point of view I want to convey. Like pretty much everyone else, I assume I’m right, and that you’re a blockhead for not seeing it my way.

I hate how this post makes me sound like the victim, and how contemptuous–how judgmental I am–of my friends’ points of view. Because they don’t agree with me! I need to afford them the respect they deserve as children of God, and offer the same charity I desire.

It’s like this: “In the essentials, unity. I the non-essentials, liberty. In all else, charity.” (St. Augustine, I believe).

That said, I think at this point in my life, (as Donald Miller recently tweeted) I would rather be rejected for who I am, than accepted for the image I project.

Which is to say: I’m an old earth creationist, a Harry Potter lover–and a devoted follower of Jesus Christ. Take me or leave me. It’s up to you.

What do you think? Have you ever felt the sting of rejection for sharing your convictions? What did you do about it? Do you hate me now?

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randomlychad

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Christ-follower, husband, dad, blogger, reader, writer, movie buff, introvert, desert-dweller, omnivore, gym rat. May, or may not, have a burgeoning collection of Darth Vader t-shirts. Can usually be found drinking protein shakes, playing with daughter, working out with his son, or hanging out with his wife. Makes a living playing with computers. Subscribe to RandomlyChad by Email

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  • Cindy Holman

    I'll take you -- and I completely agree -- we DO make a big deal about Harry Potter and LOVE "A Christmas Carol" -- I mean WHO DOESN'T? We even put that stage production on in our junior high theater class -- I don't if we would have gotten away with Harry Potter 🙂 Something to think about for sure 🙂

    • Thank-you so much, ma'am! Means a lot.I'm very much in earnest when I say that if we eliminated from our libraries all books containing references to magic, then our shelves would be rather bare indeed.

  • jmonsewicz

    We all have done the proof-text before, I'll admit I'm guilty. But something my Christian Thought professor said last fall really left an impression on me. He said that a lot of times when you read books about why Jesus was a Liberal, Republican, Feminist, or why He would be a golfer (made that one up), you're not learning about Christ really. You're reading some theory about Christ that the author is conveying due to proof-text. You're learning about the AUTHOR and where they stand/what they believe more than anything. That's why he have so many different Jesus' running around these days.

    • Amen, man! A-to-the-men!Too many Jesuses--I like that! It must be because we want Jesus to be like us--instead of letting Him be Jesus. I'm sure you've heard the phrase: “A proof text without a context is mere pretext.”

  • Yeah …. I pretty much don't share my convictions in real life. We are too deeply embedded in the Bible Belt. 🙂

    • Personally, and this may make me seem curmudgeonly, but I'm getting fed up with this hiding. I know about not flaunting my liberty, but it too often feels like I'm shutting parts of myself down for the sake of… I don't know anymore. Like I said, better to be rejected for being me, than accepted on the basis of a projection. That's my $.02.

      • Actually, I am increasingly becoming that way, also. 🙂 We recently moved to a new church and I'm finding myself having a low tolerance for all the church crap that doesn't work and not saying anything about it. So I'm saying things about it. But trying to do so without coming across hateful. Lol.

        • Exactly! Speaking out in love is the best recourse.

  • I agree with you on old earth and Twilight. Wait, not Twilight?

    Plus, 42 is not an age for any and all things curmudgeonly. Stop it.

    • Twilight? Heathen! ;-)Hey, now! I reserve the right to be cranky whenever I want! ;-)(Ok, I'm not really a crank--but I play one on the Internet). 😉

  • Shoot, so that’s that one supopses.