Say the word “get” 10 times slowly and I suspect you will encounter the phenomenon known as ‘Semantic Satiation’ where the word loses its meaning and to borrow from a biblical description – becomes as like clashing cymbals. I am currently experiencing this response to the word “Christian”. Except in this case there is no need to repeat the word as it only need to be spoken once and as it hangs there in the air people around who have heard it register no meaning whatsoever.
How is it that the description ‘Christian’ has become a thing so vile, so filthy, so full of controversy, so symbolic of everything wrong with society? “I can’t believe that person just cut you off in line? That is such a Christian-thing to do!” You know, that sort of new use for something that at some point in its sordid past was well-meaning.
Oh, how embarrassing of me.
Right. It is only my desire to have this description mean something beautiful that therein lies the controversy because the reality is just as vile as it has ever been.
I want to be called a Christian. I do believe in Jesus Christ after all, however to take on the label is akin to some fascist movement and that is not at all what I want to be associated with. I have enough judgement in my heart to contend with that I don’t need the baggage of this label bogging me down with more reasons to judge. I have enough trouble showing love to one another than being given weighty bible verses in order to assign one’s worth and value like I have any resemblance to power or authority.
Perhaps my disgust over the title Christian comes from living in a historical bible-belt and meeting the people who still believe they are. But then again I read the news and unless all of ‘those’ people also live in a bible-belt I think those of us who love Jesus have a serious issue to contend with. It would appear that some incredibly arrogant assholes have taken over the term Christian in order to ‘polish’ their image and instead of doing just that they have instead made friends with Herod, Judas, Saul, or Ahab just to name a few.
In the meantime I continue to avoid the entrances to churches, telling those around me giving me sideways glances as to my noted ‘absences’ that I am just visiting or ‘still looking’ when it comes to church attendance. I am not opposed to going to church. I am just opposed to having a conversation with most of the people who go there, instead enjoying conversations with the rest of the people on a Sunday morning – pleasantly surprised with their take on life, love, and the interaction with Creation, trying not to dwell on the fact that the reason I can have such wonderful and joyful conversations with people is because of timing.