jennifer hanigan

a pinch of this and a dollop of that

Peace and Hammers

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I just saw a “Christian” meme that contained a picture for each day of the week. Monday through Saturday were identical pictures of three women dancing. Sunday was a picture of a couple of women with their eyes closed, hands raised, apparently in worship. The caption read “Casual Christianity is Not Christianity. Don’t be a Casual Christian,” The point being driven home, I guess, is that people act like Christians on Sunday but the rest of the week, they’re heathens. Apparently they should be eyes-closed, hands-raised, singing-to-the-Lord 24/7! All I can say about that is that I might not mind so much, but it would probably drive my roommate bonkers. She already puts up with more of my singing-jazz-while-cooking than I suspect she’d prefer.

On second glance, I wondered what was so un-Christian about the three women dancing. I know the old saw about Baptists being against premarital sex because it might lead to dancing, but nowadays I hardly hear anyone actually condemn it (the dancing, that is). And if they do, I really wonder what they make of the various dances recorded in the Bible…especially that naked one.

So if it wasn’t the dancing, was it the bare shoulders? Or was it just…having fun?

Further pondering led me to this theory: Three women dancing, in what may be party or ‘little black’ dresses, are obviously in a night club. Women who go to night clubs are obviously drinking too much and probably even using drugs. And it’s very, very likely that they are a. enticing men with their dancing and b. going home with a different man every night-maybe even more than one! So obviously, they are heathens 6 days a week, and if they are in church on the seventh, they should be ashamed of themselves for being fake Christians!

Or at least it might seem so to some people.

I mean, I don’t know anyone who dances every single day except Ellen DeGeneres (maybe that’s why evangelicals really think she’s damned!). But I do know a lot of people (Christians) who are willing to make assumptions about others, especially when those others are different than they are. They have these pictures in their head of what the ‘right’ kind of person (Christian) is like, and literally everything and everyone else falls into the ‘wrong’ box–degenerate, sinful, fake, shameful, worthless, what have you.

I don’t think I have enough energy to be that judgmental; it sounds exhausting. Here’s a better idea:

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Whoever thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men. So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding. (Romans 14:17-19, emphases mine)

What? Peace and joy? Building up instead of tearing down?  Well, doesn’t that sound like a lot more fun?



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