I hate Christianity.
Actually, allow me to rephrase that. Hate is a strong and distasteful word.
I have a complete and utter disdain for the current social state of Christianity in today’s society.
Quick: what are the first words that come to mind when you think “Christian”?
Jesus? Ok, good, you’re on the right track.
Un-cool? So very. Anyone who believes in God has got to be boring because of all those rules. Right?
Judgmental? Ouch. Spot on.
Hypocritical? I won’t argue with you, but that’s human genetics. We’re all at fault there to some degree.
David Kinnaman writes in his book UN-Christian that 70% of the population likes the idea of Jesus. It’s Christians that turn them off to the religion. Understandable. Especially if you’ve had experience with any of the above statements.
But I’ve taken a second glance, and as far as I can tell Christians are partying harder and having better sex than you ever will.
Can you imagine waiting to have sex until you meet someone who is so devastatingly beautiful she stops your heart and takes your breath away, yet fills you with life? Someone who shares all your beliefs? Trusts you and knows your heart; has your heart. A best friend you can laugh with, and cry your eyes out on their shoulder moments later. Someone worth dying for. What would that experience be like? Would you ever want to have sex with anyone else ever again? Do you really want to risk trying to find that experience twice? Consider the possibility that this particular someone is the only someone you were ever supposed to have sex with. You trust them with all your heart, so you’re never afraid to ask them for anything in the bedroom, on the kitchen table, the back seat of the car… or stand naked in the middle of a room with them—all the lights on, not hiding yourself.
What would sex be like if we were enveloped in trust instead of lust?
The idea here is that we save ourselves rather than give ourselves away to anyone who gives us an erection.
Rob Bell asks the question in his book Sex God, “Are you worth dying for?” God seems to think so. Are you willing to die for the ones you love in your life? Is she worth dying for? Would you lay down your life for the person you’re sleeping with?
Once upon a time in another life I met a girl. She was dangerous in all the right ways. A reckless cocktail waitress who left me wrecked. Covered in tattoos, she smelled of sex and cigarettes, and always grooved to a beat in her head I couldn’t hear. Our first and only date was an AA meeting we skipped to crash on the floor of her empty apartment where we shared a pack of smokes and a bottle of cheap grocery store wine. At four in the morning she informed me she’d be going to bed, and I was welcome to join. Perfect—precisely where I wanted to be, but I was frozen. I liked this girl, I wanted to know her, and make her laugh. Most importantly, I wanted to earn my time with her—not have it handed over and thrown away the next morning. She exposed herself, became vulnerable, and I responded with the worst possible outcome—by doing nothing.
I didn’t sleep with her because I liked her; I cared about her. And some part of me knew if we had any sort of physical exchange everything would be ruined.
Did she see it this way? She offered herself to me, wanting to feel loved, and I turned her down. Not because I didn’t want to sleep with her—the next day I felt as though someone handed me a gun and I slammed a bullet right through my own foot—but because I liked her too much. I could tell she was desperately seeking something—we both were—and she wasn’t going to find it in me. Was she crushed? She deleted my number from her phone. I sent her letters, she mailed me piles of ash. She avoided me at work, and blatantly draped herself over other men. We never saw each other again.
Heartbreaking. Not because I didn’t get the girl. We all lose the girl at some point. What does this say about the human race, though? Someone you barely know doesn’t connect with you physically, doesn’t take you to bed, refuses to be naked in front of you, and you feel rejected, unattractive, unloved. That’s heartbreaking.
You’re so much more than that.
This is why sex is so dangerous and powerful. It provides us with the opportunity to see a world where everything is perfect, but when it’s over we realize we’ve seen a world we can never create on our own.
So we give ourselves away again and again hoping to start anew, to find redemption, and wash away the past, seeking perfection that only lasts a moment.
We think: If I can just give myself to this one last person, if they don’t reject me…
Sex was given to us as a harmless gift in the beginning. The weapon wasn’t loaded when God handed us the gun. We just had the bullets in our pockets all along.
We are the ones who put the round in the chamber.
Sex is exclusive. There are over six billion people on this planet and out of all of them you are choosing to collide with one, to express the ultimate act of vulnerability. But it’s in the act of choosing one out of six billion where the power of sex is derived.
Rob Bell goes on to say that when we aren’t at peace, when we aren’t content, we’re triggered. We’re turned on. We’re seeking with skilled excellence to find that contentment, and it’s easier to find it in that woman eyeing you from across the bar, the boy offering you a drink at the party. But how will you feel in the morning? You’ll still be searching.
Can you imagine living in that constant state of contentment? Forever being okay with what you have. We have so much around us, so much to provide us joy, but for some reason we’re always fixated on what we don’t have. We’ll never be content this way.
Whether you’re a Christian or not, you live in a world where you are free to do anything you want. Steal a television. Drink yourself blind. Have countless one night stands. Shoot heroine. Jump off a building. Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should do it.
Freedom is seen as being able to do whatever we want, whenever we’d like. But this is a terrible lie. That isn’t freedom at all. Freedom is being able to have whatever you want and getting along just fine without it.
You also have the freedom to choose. And many of you may have chosen to believe Christians can be judgmental, hypocritical, boring, and fake, but nobody’s perfect. In fact, as a Christian I’ve been all of that before, and stubborn too. And for anyone who is reading this right now that’s ever been burned by religion, told you were wrong, suffering from a broken relationship, hurt by sex, turned off by someone who’s judged you and swore you an eternity in hell, I want to take this opportunity and apologize to you. I know you don’t know me, and I don’t know you’re story, but I’m sorry for the way you’ve been treated. You’re loved, and you’re destined for greatness.
That might not be the apology you’ve been looking for, but hopefully it’s the start to the revolution we’ve been waiting for.