Am I a Christian? Well, the answer all depends on one’s loose or rigid definitions about what it means to be Christian.

I know some people who would say that I am not so since I don’t follow their own particular Christian religion. They also express views that they dislike people of color living in slums in the US, as well as migrants who are uneducated and unable to pull their own weight in our society.

Especially they hate people whom they consider on the dole for government handouts since they are deemed lazy riffraff by them even though many poor people in my country have two or three jobs to try to make ends meet or can’t find a job due to having a police record or from being drug addicted with no money for medical help.

My own outlooks on Christianity are quite plain, unadorned and simple:

They entail “walking the walk and not just talking the talk.” You can’t follow Jesus in his outlooks if you don’t approach them wholeheartedly. There are no exceptions for serving others — period. You can’t ignore or shun his positions since you have no jurisdiction to amend his orientations. You either follow them or not and without equivocation or caveats.

So you have no right to change for yourself his views to suit your own tastes or predilections. None of your personal preferences apply. Jesus’s world view is either subsumed in entirety or not.

The golden rule is applicable here. It states, ”Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” That pretty much gets rid of the just wars theory that came up after Jesus died and rids us all, Christian or not, of so much more that afflicts Christians and others worldwide.

Then there’s “Love thy neighbor as thine self.” There are no if’s, and’s or but’s in the statement. It is quite literal.

My Christian friends and their associates who run or have run homeless shelters and soup kitchens don’t do their actions for eventually getting into Heaven. They also often are unpaid or have paltry salaries.

Some have mental breakdowns from the tragedies that they witness. Others have related to me assorted dreadful, uplifting and sometimes very funny accounts of their experiences.

Personally, I always try to be polite and helpful to people who pass through my life unless they are dangerous. So when Jehovah Witnesses tapped on my door to try to bring me into their flock, I welcomed them. Yet I was very clear with them.

I said that I did nothing in order to please or displease their God. I simply choose to do what is deemed right behavior for proceeding through life via serving humanity and the natural world. If it makes their sense or personification of a deity happy — fine. If not, that is fine, too, since I am very secure in wanting to foster and foist life forward regardless of whatever a God or other humans think. Thus, I am quite definitive in my views and I aim to keep it that way.

I wrote to one Christian this morning the following commentary. How do I know about the way that she’ll take it since I don’t follow her particular sect and branch of the religion. So I am likely deemed a pariah or a heretic by her.

“I just watched the Pope in an Easter program called MISA. It was very inspirational and moving.

“I also watched parts of two other programs about Easter. It is because I am ecumenical, accepting of earnest people and eclectic.

“One of these latter twosome was literal and focused on scriptures with special attention to the Holy Spirit in people’s individual lives. The other was largely about the difference between the firm views of Jesus and Disciples, and pagan nature worshippers who worship fertility through bunnies, baby chicks, colored eggs and so on in spring when the Earth starts to bring new life.

“In any case, all services brought good points about this day. That’s appreciated by me!”

So it goes. I am not about to change my directions in life for anyone human or supernatural. Principles, standards, kindness, compassion, empathy, values, ethics and morals seem preferable to my possibly shutting off these main focal points to obey some sect, it would seem.

Sally Dugman lives in MA, USA.


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2 Comments

  1. Avatar Sally Dugman says:

    Hi,

    Thanks for sharing. i I know the Bruderhof a bit. After all, I grew up in a Quaker household.

    In addition, a Bruderhof young woman volunteered for a while at a Catholic Worker homeless shelter run by long term friends of mine out of their home. (Oh, and they do more such as lay their lives on the line as have I to promote life.) She wrote a fabulous and touching article for their newsletter.

    If you want receipt of the newsletter from them, check out this link and contact them. … I’m writing an article now and asked my friends to provide this particular link on account.

    It is here:

    https://archive.org/stream/catholicradical/catholicradical-2018-10