I have long since come to accept this thing that happens, this thing where I will testify to the goodness of God, to the honor and love of men, to the way women are treasured and loved within Christianity, and some lunkhead will come along and present himself as a living, breathing, walking, testimony that proves me wrong.
It’s downright uncanny. If I am with a non believer who hates the, “misogyny of Christians,” I can almost guarantee you we’re going to pull up to the gas pump right behind the guy with the fish stickers and crosses all over the back of his car. Sure enough, he’s going to be the one guy having a full-blown meltdown, cursing up a storm, and displaying his outright contempt for women in as many vile and colorful ways as possible.
I’ve lost track of all the times people have looked at me smugly and said, “See, you’re lying, Christians really are horrible people.” My kids, my family, friends, strangers, people I care about, have all seen this unfold right before their eyes and they use it to validate and justify their own non belief, to support their unwillingness to have anything to do with the church.
My husband had the best answer. Once when observing one of these heavily decorated Christians having a tantrum right in front of us he wryly remarked, “Good thing that guy is saved. I’d hate to see what he was like before.”
Yep. The guy might be justified, but there is some question as to how the sanctification process is…. progressing. Gallows humor, I’m telling you.
The same thing happens on the internet so frequently I’ve grown accustomed to it. There are always going to be blog posts out there accusing me of heresy, demonic activity, being a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Dangerous. Vile. Dirty. A radical feminist, a horrible person, blah,blah,blah. Believe it or not, the worst attacks have actually come from women who have written entire screeds about my alleged mental health, my alleged hormonal imbalance, lots of very graphic and personal stuff one could almost label…sexist. Women calling themselves Christians.
This kind of surprised me. It shouldn’t have, but it did.
Add in the additional issue of how I confront some of these people, as gently as possible, but I do deliberately go forth and attempt to start a discussion with people who are doing some things that should simply not be done in Jesus Christ’s name. I’m not talking about what books they read, what movies they watch, I’m talking outright blasphemy, hatred, and cultian behavior. So that tends to paint a target on me and I will actually draw out that one Christian within 5000 miles, heck sometimes from all the way across the world, and I can almost guarantee you he or she is going to confirm every negative stereotype one might wish to have confirmed about Christ’s people.
So there is a distortion in perception going on here that I am well aware of. Like I said, it truly is uncanny sometimes. But is it true? Is it an accurate portrayal of Christians in general? Are we all a bunch of misogynistic lunkheads or are you only seeing what you want to see? Perhaps seeing only what the enemy wants you to see?
Is Insanitybytes lying about, “the goodness of God, to the honor and love of men, to the way women are treasured and loved within Christianity?” I emphatically think not. For one, we who live in the Western world that has been heavily influenced by Christian values are enjoying more rights, comfort, freedom, love, protection than women have at any other time in history, anywhere in the world. That testifies to the truth of what I say about the positive influence of faith on women’s lives and the culture we’ve created where even non believers are protected.
Something else that speaks to the heart of the matter, the other day almost like a orchestra being conducted, Christian men were expressing great love and affection for women all over the place. Franklin Graham had a thing going on where men were leaving comments paying tribute to the women in their lives. So many blog post were written giving honor to wives. Poetry, love stories, this massive groundswell of Christian men revealing their heart and love for the women in their lives, their moms, their sisters, their daughters, their wives.
So I spent International Women’s Day eating chocolates with a box of tissues nearby and reading endless love sonnets from hundreds of Christian men. It’s a rough life, I tell ya, but somebody has to do it.
People are free to disagree with me, to say what they want about me, but I will not be surrendering one inch of territory that loudly proclaims that love conquers all, that He is now seated in victory at the right hand of the Father, that testifies to “the goodness of God, to the honor and love of men, to the way women are treasured and loved within Christianity.” These things are all are objectively true. I live them everyday.
As to the lunkheads, I tend to do what my kids use to do, just drop a paper towel over the mess, walk away and start yelling, “clean up on aisle six!” If you’re going to be hot mess, at least be a hot mess for Christ. Hot messes really are His specialty.