A saying that I hate for it’s pure lameness is the one that churches use all the time to make people do crap that they don’t want to do: “You need to step out of your comfort zone.” Not only is that super cheesy, it’s also so hypocritical that it makes me laugh.
The church system is the most comfortable religious environment that exists. Everything about it is designed for comfort, both spiritually and physically. Create a space and time to engage in spiritual activity. Pay someone else to do the Christian stuff for you like visiting sick people in the hospital and old people who can’t get out of their houses, and teaching and knowing all that Bible stuff, and telling lost people about Jesus and so on.
You only have to grow to a certain point, know just enough, just get to the point that any good layman would be at. Instead of discipleship being a lifelong process, it’s a class. You complete the class, get a certificate, and then you can get baptized. You are now a discipled, baptized member of the church. The rest is just cruising.
There was a time where you at least paid your dues by being bored at church. Now you don’t even have to suffer through that. Videos, and live bands, and cool preachers that sit on stools and wear soul patches and have cool jokes and poignant stories to tell. Entertainment is the primo expression of comfort.
Now you get the warm fuzzy feelings of being a good Christian and none of the tough crap that originally was associated with following Christ. You know, all that life sacrifice, loving God and others type of junk.
Lots of people have gotten really pissed off about the stuff I have been writing. Maybe it’s because I’m a jerk and say things in a pretty harsh manner, but if the things that I am saying are true, then wouldn’t it be fitting to be angry and aggressive in attacking these problems? Maybe, on the other hand, people are mad because what I am saying challenges their comfort.
When I say that we should burn down the church, I am saying that everything these people have always loved and enjoyed is garbage and needs to be destroyed. I guess it would make sense that saying stuff like that would get under people’s skin. Oh well. The truth is that the system lulls millions of people into a comfortable religious ignorance of the truth. That’s not good for anyone.
And what about the people who challenge the system? Or start to bring uncomfortable problems into the system? They get thrown out. They get hurt and mad, and they walk away from what they think represents Christ, and in so doing, they walk away from Christ because they have no idea who he really is.
Comfort was never part of the promise. Actually the opposite was what we were promised. So when we can live our whole lives as “Christians” and never struggle with anything uncomfortable in our faith maybe we should ask what we are doing, and why things aren’t as hard as they were promised to be.