Jaded

The definition for jaded comes down to the following phrases according to online sources: made dull, apathetic, or cynical by experience or by surfeit.

Yes, this fits the description one of my best friends told me in regards to church.  I was greatly sadden.  Her concept of how church works is so distorted by what seems to be a never ending series of events that not only changed the way she views church-goers, but also the leadership that runs it.  Convincing an individual who is no longer speaking out of speculation but out of direct experience is rather difficult.  I try to encourage her, and help her see the good.  I tell her that I have my share of battles, but that we should endure.  Her argument is that before entering a church, she did not have to tolerate being spoken down to, she did not have to tolerate the backbiting, and the condescending manner many religious people express as they encounter people who do not share the same values or cultural preferences.  In a different context, she would feel the freedom to speak up and not have to fear the ‘looks” or the “mini sermons” other people would “indirectly” give her because someone “shared Sister Blank’s weakness” for prayer purposes.   She says, “Not that this never happened before, but why here?”   Secretly, though, I must say I agree with many of her points for in a way, I too have become jaded.  People speak lightly.  They say one thing and live another.  Many just go through the notions of ‘church’, and never enter in a real intimate relationship with God.  It shows.  Our life becomes arid and desolate because we are missing the source of life; His will, His presence, His being in us.  Could I convince her of thinking otherwise?  I don’t think so.  That’s neither my job nor my place.  His word says that the Holy Spirit has come to convince us.  All I can do, and MUST do is be an example of who God is and what it means to be a follower of Christ.  I set my eyes on Him, the Author of Life.  I call His Name, and He is faithful to respond.  I pray I am not one of “those” whose lukewarm life or double standards are a stumbling stone.  I pray and make it my daily endeavor to not forget that I must treat others as I would treat Christ before me…for He is in them.  Not speak down to them, not expect more thatn what they offer, not criticize the choices of others, not breach my vows of trust, not linger in people’s past, not be too prideful to accept that others are not like me, not to just be sympathetic but empathetic, and not lack the Love of Christ to see past the shambles, the pain, and the mess this life might put upon us. 

Being jaded is like this illustration. Not all things are clear.  Only the sedentary things seem clear.  Yet, the future and its possibilities (the sky) are a blur.  It is the future and what it entails that is important.  We need to offer hope in Christ to all that surround us.

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