Read about this series of posts here, The Christian Culture Survival Guide.
Becoming friends with the Christians at Church was easy. One simply had to look the part of a new convert (or potential convert), and you were welcomed into the ranks. Of course, most everyone leaned towards conservative value. Group bible study get-togethers involved me keeping my mouth shut. It was hard to truly become part of the group when you didn’t say “amen!” after every five sentences of speech, and raised your hand in the air whilst your head was down. There was a group mentality that went like this- If you’re not with us, you’re against us. I was the sheep cast among wolves.
Mind you, this following sentence contains a word I do not condone using, but here it is being used to prove a point. Mr. Turner tells a story of when he was a younger person carrying a boom box to Church, and upon walking in one of the ushers whispered, “How many niggers did you have to tackle to get that there CD player?” Mr. Turner makes the point of saying that there are some Christians out there that make it hard for the rest of them, like saying vile things as if they were nothing but a joke. I know the reason for this- they’re all human like the rest of us. Having faith in an unsubstantiated worldview does not make you a better person. Kicking racism and stereotyping out the door is a good start though. And while you’re at it, try tolerance.
Five phrases insulting to Christians, according to Mr. Turner:
1. You’re sexy! (This phrase is seemingly X-rated for the more conservative Christian types.)
2. I’m a Democrat. (Liberalism=God Hater.)
3. Would you like to see a wine list? (Because you know what happened to Lot.)
4. I don’t think there is anything wrong with being gay.
5. How do you know God is indeed a man?
Turner tells of an event involving his job as the editor of CCM magazine (a Contemporary Christian Music magazine). He received a phone call from a lady who did not like the usage of the word “sexy” in an article heading. She yelled at Turner, telling him that sex is not talked about in the bible. Of course, we already know about the Songs of Solomon, however, this woman then made the claim that it wasn’t talked about in the King James Version. She cancelled her subscription over one word.
Five things Turner has learned about other Christians:
1. When it seems you are going to offend somebody, then you are going to offend somebody.
2. Think twice before you think your criticism will be welcomed at all.
3. Christians judge first, think second.
4. Christians have a skewed sense of humor (as we’ve discussed before). Perhaps most of your jokes won’t come across as funny, unless they deal with bible stories.
5. A Christian’s politics is his religion, and vice-versa.
Turner then continues to tell us yet another story of his days as the CCM editor. This one involved listening to a demo CD of a prospective Christian singer… and then telling her the music needed work. The prospective Christian singer was astounded, and said that the Holy Spirit gave her the song. At that point, there are three things you can say, but I’ll only share the one that is worth our time- “You’re full of crap.”
The last sentence in the chapter reads something along the lines of “silence can help diffuse the worst of situations”. In Church, I held my silence out of fear. I would be looked down upon. I would be labeled with all sorts of horrific titles. Any minor friendships I held would have been lost.
Today, however, I would not be afraid to call those people out on their tripe. And whenever somebody else was looked down upon for being different, I wouldn’t put up with it. If these people knew me now.