I give up! The right wing evangelicals can have the Christian religion all to themselves. I am tired of trying to defend Christianity by saying that all Christians don’t necessarily believe that way. I am beaten into submission and am willing to admit that Christianity (at least as it is described by the right wing Christian political agenda) is about the preservation of White culture and against women, Blacks, Muslims, and immigrants. They can have their pet inventions – intelligent design, fear of minorities, and hatred of same sex marriage. They can keep their Franklin Grahams and James Dobsons, et al. I am tired of trying to reclaim the Bible from the Biblical literalists who think that every word that they agree with is straight from the mouth of God.
I am tired of the “Christian” perspective which suggests that every important idea was hatched in the 1st or the 5th or the 13th or the 16th Century. I am frustrated hearing school board members and local politicians cite the Bible as the “final” word about climate change, sexuality, science, or community issues.
I want to follow in the footsteps of a brown Middle Eastern Jew who lived more than two thousand years ago, a man named Yeshua, who thought people ought to care for one another, stand in solidarity with those rejected by conventional society, and oppose the principalities and powers of the powerful and privileged.
I want to pay attention to an inner divine urge to do justice, be compassionate, and present my self with humility. I want to connect with people without regard to whether they will be invited to the next cocktail party; I want to sit with those who are stared at on the streets and who would not be welcomed with open arms in most churches.
I am frustrated with members of reasonably progressive churches debating budgets instead of mission priorities, blaming membership losses on theological differences, and being clueless about why their grandchildren don’t want anything to do with church.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer called for a “religionless Christianity.” I am ready to settle for a religionless anything. I want to be able to live my final years learning new things; stretching my imagination creatively without having to defend a Christianity that has failed. I want to honor the integrity of the divine spirit I experience in other people. I want to discuss important issues with people from diverse backgrounds and differing perspectives without fear of retribution for them or me. I wish civilization had a CTL+ALT+DEL function to reboot it. But, no such luck. So, I guess I shall have to continue to read, and talk, and teach, and write – hoping that I might be rebooted, perhaps with one or two or three others along the way.