So it happened today. Out of no where, like a shot in the dark. I knew it would happen eventually. It was like Robin Hood hid in the strategically placed foliage, that every church has, on the stage and shot me right in the chest. It was the look of judgement. I never saw it coming. I never had a chance. It was the look of “I know what did, you’re such a horrible person. Your suppose to be a ‘man’ of God.” It wasn’t even a whole two seconds, maybe not even a whole second, but it was more then enough. In that one gut wrenching look it hit me all over again. The Niagara Falls of guilt and shamed just washed over me. In that moment all I wanted to do was just say “ I know I know, I’m a horrible person.” and walk out in shame. During the service all I could think about was what a failure I was to God, my family, and friends. I couldn’t focus. I couldn’t, with all my heart, praise God. I was, am, a failure.
Then God ripped the arrow out of my chest and hit me in the back of the head with it. What was I thinking? Thats the whole point. I felt like Job when God dropped some hard knowledge on him. I mean really who was I to say that Christ love, sacrifice, and blood wasn’t enough? Yes, I had failed; yes, I had sinned against God and myself, but was Christ’s sacrifice not enough? That was why Christ died. He came for me and all my junk, everything. I can’t emphasize it enough.
It seems to me that we as Christians try and guilt our way to righteousness. We do something wrong, and instead of accepting Christ’s grace and forgiveness we think we have to sulk and punish ourselves before we can come back to God. Once I felt like a total failure and instead of going to church I worked myself till my hands shook. Yeah, thats definitely a righteous act. That will definitely put me back into the graces of God. Wrong. I bet you already know the answer to this one. Its Christ, He is the only thing because, He is grace. It was like Christ was saying “wasn’t My sacrifice enough? Did I not suffer for you? I came for you, I did this for you. You are MINE.”
Then I had another thought. Why do we give those looks? You know what I’m talking about. We Christians are like ninjas trained in the fine art of judgmental looks. We so easily declare how we are lollipops and unicorns for grace and forgiveness and then we decide we are Judge Judy on steroids passing down rough justice. Don’t get me wrong. I am all for holding your fellow brother or sister in Christ accountable (I have a few guys that have the physical permission to hit me if need be). However, there is a difference between holding a fellow struggler in the faith accountable and pulling an ocular John Cena “you can’t see me” on the ‘offending’ party. So we should encourage and help one another. I am just as guilty of this as the rest.
But to carry on in the wrestling/physical violence theme I have going for me, I have come to a conclusion. When I see that judgmental stare being aimed at me, I’ll take a cue from the Rock. Because God declared on that day of Sacrifice “IT DOESN’T MATTER”. So if your ever at church and hear me yell that (and small children start to cry) just know that whatever your burden is your forgiven. Also for me if I ever think about giving the “look” I’ll just think of the Rock yelling at me (which means I’ll need to carry extra underwear).