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And Then There Was Silence

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spike grrr

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I'm sick of church at the moment. Yes, this is a rant that will offend some people, so I'm going to chuck it under an eljay cut.

Right, I love the teaching at St Matts, it's very biblically based, and I enjoy that. All good! *nods head vigorously*
Is it so wrong of me to be pissed off at the people who go there?

Yes, I drink alcohol, I attend parties and party the night away. I role play some dodgy characters. None of this makes me a bad christian. Because of the people I come into contact with, i've had some great conversations about Christianity and Jesus &c. So why do I feel so judged by the st matts crowd? Probably because I'm walking down the line. Instead of huddling in the christian corner, I'm putting myself out there 'getting into their context' as one woman told me.

On Friday, a couple from my church came to my house cooling. They talked to the people they knew, then sat on the couch, and didn't move until they left early. The bible says that christians are in this world, but not of it. But Paul says that he become like a Jew to win the Jews. He became like a Gentile to win the gentiles. Sometimes I drink too much, and that is a problem that I need to solve. but this does not mean that I wont drink. Getting into the lives of people, and having common interests, be them alcohol or rpgs, is my way of getting into their context. Becoming a nerd to win the nerds. Drinking is how a LOT of people relate to each other in Australia. I think a lot of people in the church cushion themselves against the real world by not interacting too much with non-christians. but by going with my non-christians friends to a pub or club, although you might not be actively witnessing, you're building the friendship, just by being there.

Also, if you don't get down to their level, what's so appealing about christianity? "If you become a Christian, then you have to sit around looking down on other people and completely abandoning your former life style" is not something that appeals to people. There are things you would have to abandon, and I'm not ignoring them. but I think some people in the church take it waaaaaay too far. They neglect to show any fun sides at all.

I'm not trying to attack any one person. Nor am I saying that everyone is like this. I'm saying that everyone has this problem in varying degrees. This may jangle some nerves, but only the nerves that need to be jangled. I'm sick of being judged for role playing and the like, why should I have to defend myself?

Get out of your soft cushiony christian bubbles!!
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Forgive me if it's not my place to say, but maybe they are just misinformed on the basic nature of roleplaying. To me, roleplaying is just a group of people coming together to tell a story. You tell the story of your character and the guides the main story, nothing sinister at all to it. This explanation won't work if your Christian associates are the type of people who would petition to ban Harry Potter books.

As for the alcohol, it's not like you're going to church carrying a tinny of Emu Bitter, and wearing a wife-beater (sorry, I just wanted to convey that image).

They neglect to show any fun sides at all.

Oh, forgot to say. Maybe they just have different ideas of fun.

ideas of fun that aren't very accomadating.

It seems that unless you have fun their way, then it's bad fun. Or whatever.

I think they have a bunch of misconcepions, probably about rpgs and the like. I'm chucking rpgs itno my rant, because it's a pasttime I feel I've had to defend a couple of times. And I don't think I should have to, for reasons you've stated.

I'm tired of having to defend myself against a bunch of stuff

all of that sounds pretty spot on hey. a lot of people like tha tin my church too. And most other churches I've seen. E

xcept maybe the drinking too much thing, that's a seperate issue altogether though, and not related to christian-ness. But yeah, you said "sometimes i drink too much, and that is a problem that i need to solve. but this does not mean I wont drink" - maybe abstaining from alcohol for a little while (but most certainly not permanently) *would* be a good way to deal with that problem?

up until the weekend, I had a "two-drinks a night maximum" policy.

But as my weekend activity went for many many many hours, more than 10hrs, I kinda extended it without thinking too much.

Oh Yes! You so totally win.

<3 this post.

I don't think they realise they have this attitude most of the time

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I'm not going to stop going to church just because I'm pissed off at people. I enjoy the teaching, and the fellowship for the most part. Maybe all of us who feel this way should start our own church! :D lol

Besides, how can you change people if you're not there? There's a few people there who are very cool and calm. I find that their attitudes aren't so judgy, and I enjoy their company.

Also, small churches are good for not being uptight. They're just happy to have people along. :D Yay for small churches.

Some points from the other side: these people you say are judgy and all- could it be that they have grown up in the church and never had former "lifestyle" to abandon? And for example with nightclubbing not everyone likes it. i don't like losing my hearing, drinking stuff that tastes gross, getting hit on by numerous sleazy drunk guys, trying to dance to music i don't like and being really tired the next day.

It can be as awkward as going to a party and trying to fit in for these types as going to church on a sunday would be for most unchurchey types. So you think that they should try to fit in and not judge - but what if their niche to fit in is somewhere else with groups of people who don't drink? Also, you are judging them and looking down your nose at them. You can't always know what is actually going on inside people. Often people who are shy might seem snobbish without meaning to be. Isn't that why a lot of people drink, so they can overcome social awkwardness? So with these people who don't drink it's not surprising that they might appear a bit awkward. It can be awkward to impose yourself on a social scene that appears having so much fun together with themselves and hasn't really noticed you. An effort should be made, just saying it's not that easy. You should try to talk to your friends if you feel this strongly about stuff and try to explain your feelings to them before ranting about them. I think you are on different wavelengths; listen to their point of view and try to understand even if you don't totally agree with it.

Also, i think people can have fun without drinking and they shouldn't be judged for that decision. There are many good reasons not to drink. Biblically, there are warnings against getting drunk as it can lead to sin(drinking a little itself is not a sin). However, if you are not planning on getting drunk, why drink at all and open the temptation? There is a sense of looking out for the "weaker brother", not causing him to sin. Some may have been heavy drinkers pre christian days and may feel being in that scene or drinking a little to be too much for them temptation wise. I know a few people like that.

It is a balance- to outreach and yet be different. I think people and churches tend to go too far one way or the other

All those are valid points and I agree with them. I haven't been to a club in ages because it's not my scene. I don't really like them at all. And you can have lots of fun without drinking or getting drunk, and I have done that many a time. Side note: Is drinking a lot a sin if you can handle to drink a lot and not get drunk?

I think too many people are walking on the safest side possible at the expense of witnessing and mission.

My complate point here, is that a bunch of people, all round the place, are sticking to their own company. Just because we're not good at something doesn't mean we shouldn't try! If you're not good at socialising, go out there and socialise for the gospel! Paul was never a good speaker, did that stop him!?

It is a balance, and I'm trying to push those who are sitting too far to the safe side, out into the middle

Yeah good points, yay for trying! And like having a supportive group of friends makes it easier to take some risks and get back up when things go wrong- at whatever. I agree that lots of churchey people get comfortable with their own kind and it's understandable but yet if you get out there with people it might be hard but i think it would be way more fulfilling in the long run (aside from anything else). I'm still working on that kind of thing myself as i am the biggest chicken that ever squawked lol!

P.S. I have no idea about the drinking thing; i guess you could draw principles out but yeah i dunno people tend to get hung up on one issue or the other. If getting drunk is a sin then it's probably not too much worse (or better) than other sins- say lying to someone, for example. So someone might think that they are a good person for not drinking but then they might do something else, like look down on people who get drunk and not be blind to their fault... so i thinks it's good to keep a wider view and not get hung up about things...but in answer to ur question i don't know really

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