This frustrates me.
Specifically, that either A: someone is just out to make Christians look bad (and if that’s the case, there’s balls we can do about it) or B: It’s us, and we don’t need help looking bad. (I won’t even touch Westboro.)
“Why would you be frustrated by that, out of all the problems in the world?” you ask.
Because if we don’t take the time to assess ourselves, everyone else will, and their assessment is going to be “You’re a bunch of arrogant (insert naughty plural here).”
If you didn’t read the story, the gist is that somebody left a note instead of a tip for a waitress in New Jersey reading “I’m sorry but I cannot tip because I do not agree with your lifestyle and how you live your life.”
Apparently spreading the Gospel now comes in second to “Offer a judgmental note with no redeeming value.” I bet the first thing that waitress is going to do with that note is realize how terribly wrong she’s been and run to the nearest church. No, wait, she’s going to post it on Facebook so a bunch of people who either haven’t had the chance to otherwise find out what Christianity is about or are too ignorant/bitter to care that the opinions represented in this note do not represent Christ’s actual message can moan about how awful we are.
As an aside, notice you never hear about people who mark receipts with: “I noticed you loved money too much, and I don’t agree with your lifestyle because the love of money is the root of all evil so I can’t tip you.”
We tend to view certain sins as some kind of barrier between us and everyone else, as if all the garbage we do is–maybe not more acceptable per se, but somehow it’s not as unacceptable as that. Heavens, no.
And then, for some strange reason, people hate us. Yes, I know there are obvious reasons why people would hate us, and that’s to be expected. It’s less fun than having everyone love you, but whatever. Just because we’re on a highway where hate is expected doesn’t mean we have to strap boosters to the car and make rude gestures at everyone we pass. We (or whoever is responsible) need to stop shooting ourselves in the face.
Imagine Detroit. Like Christianity, Detroit has image problems. (Yes, for vastly different reasons, and yes the messages are in no way related.) Anyway. Having Ndamukong Suh as city ambassador would be a mistake. In the same vein, when a woman’s contact with Christianity is limited to “You’re a bad person I’m superior because yeah end of story,” it feels like we’re botching the proverbial rollout, so to speak.