"All seems like Daisy chains when Christians are literally being beheaded or thrown overboard."
YET-we all seem to feel the need to worship--be it in a home church all the way to the largest of the mega churches. Our hearts and souls desire to worship the Most High with those of like mind. There is a reason there are so many different denominations and churches---we are all individuals. The perfect or near perfect fit is determined by "our corporate worship heritage and culture" and the place we find ourselves today based upon our cumulative worship experiences.
End of today's comments concerning yesterday's blog.
Today concerns my view of attending church as a single woman and my hyper awareness of what seems to be a caste system within the body. I dare say-I may be the only one who feels this way and depending upon your situation it may never have occurred to you there is any division among the body. This ONLY reflects my perspective and admittedly I am super sensitive.
The line up of the castes seems to be a division based upon martial status. I have been at the top and now sit at the bottom, so I understand some of the reasons for this happening. The top social order of the church is the complete family. Depending upon the church, within this division those with children still at home may take the top step, especially in today's Bible churches and the other married couples just below. The widows are on equal ground with those who are married, but receive special honorary status due to their loss. Then you have the singles---those singles who have never been married are at the top of this division, but at the bottom of the layers are those who are divorced.
In fairness, I never experienced this in the last church I belonged to in Ruston. Perhaps because I was married when I began attending it, perhaps because the body had learned who I was, and perhaps it was just the church. I will never know, but I never felt slighted because of the change in my martial status. In fact I felt supported and uplifted during some of the darkest days of my life.
What do I base my system on? Observation and experiences. When a church has a Sunday School class comprised of divorced women, it struck me as strange. When asked my martial status and having to say divorced, I had some become uncomfortable and look for an exit to the conversation. In general many within the Body seem uncomfortable with divorce and not know quite what to do with someone who is in this situation.
What is my solution? In the wonderful small group, which I was part of for almost 10 years, we had a wide range of age and martial status. Varying ages by 30 years and married, widowed, and divorced were all represented. It looked like life! There is so much to be gained from one another--if we only take the time to listen to the stories and experiences of those who are not our mirror image. It was a beautiful thing to witness everything from birth to death and all that can come in between. We lived life together, upheld each other, and loved each other well. We looked at each other through the eyes of acceptance and no prejudice. It was an equal playing field.
"Birds of a feather flock together," may be true especially within The Church. I find it quite interesting the other institution here that I belong to, The Y, seems to be quite different. I have made friends with singles, divorced, married, same sex couples, reprobates, and saints. There seems to be no prejudice when working together for the goal of fitness. Interesting! Is the common goal, the great equalizer? What about the common goal of worshiping Almighty God?
I am reminded who Jesus sought out and hung around with. NOT the married couples with 2.25 kids or the empty nester sailing into the sunset together. No, Jesus, sought the sinners, the fallen, the disenfranchised, the shunned, the outcast. Jesus looked at all through the eyes of love and grace. OH, that we could emulate his actions and love one another.
Am I off base? Are you inclusive of all-no matter their martial status? Anxious to hear from you again. Perhaps I need to grow a thicker skin ---tell me what you think.
I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.--Romans 16:17