Monday, October 17, 2016

Still Musing......

....on why any Christian would choose to take offense (and taking offense IS a choice) at another Christian being excited enough about something God has done in her life that she is sharing it with her spiritual brothers and sisters.  Life is full of sorrow, tragedy and plain drabness so much of the time.  Why would it be seen as an offense to share something good in life that gives glory to God for his work in a person's every day life? I am truly curious about that type of thinking.

The psalms are all about David's deliverances from fear, from death, from his own sin. Even that he freely confesses and shares the salvation of God with not only his contemporaries, but in the written records that make up part of our own Christian scriptures.  He is detailed in his stories of God moving in his life.

The scriptures contain many exhortations that God's people are to share what he is doing in their lives with each other and with the rest of the world.  It gives God glory and that is what his people are supposed to do.  Stories of his moving in our lives as well as in the world in general are meant to be an encouragement, an edification to all the church.  Both Testaments are just that: testimonies about God working in peoples' lives.  Apparently some people find it "creepy" when Christians continue to do that today.  Should I be offended by being considered "creepy"? hahaha  No, of course I am not offended, just glad that a word was used that helps me understand the depth of the abhorrence some people have to hearing about other peoples' spiritual experiences.  I truly did not realize it before.  Typically oblivious me....sigh.....

So, this morning, I am feeling rather bamboozled as to why there seems to be an entire demomination of Christians (speaking generally of course) and maybe more than one, who are so against the very instruction of God to share his good works to bolster each other's faith.

I am torn between being completely fascinated by the discovery that so many apparently feel that way and being utterly appalled!

Lots to think about.  

I am grateful to my friend for enlightening me.  Her comments are most helpful and have helped me understand some things that have happened to me since moving to this province and becoming more involved in our denomination here.  Now a lot of things make sense that haven't before.

Another idea is forming in my mind and heart; an idea that has been dancing around the shadowy edges of my thinking for the past year.  It is that I need to take positive steps to expand my Christian community here where I live.  The people I am closest to and can share most honestly with about spiritual and personal things are still mostly folk from other cities, provinces and countries.  I suspect I am going to have to now further explore the local non-Anglican communities as well as continuing to enjoy my own church.  All ready this morning I have been made aware of another, still liturgical, group that is more open to sharing and to having a welcoming community that extends beyond whether or not a person has grown up in Saskatchewan.  It sounds less ingrown and more welcoming on the surface.  Church leaders I respect, even within my own Anglican community, are aware of this group and respect its leader so much he has even in times past been asked to be the guest speaker at Anglican leadership retreats.  

Yeah....I know when and where they meet and I may just check them out sooner rather than later as a place to expand my spiritual community.  Might be good, might not be good at all, but maybe it is time to find out.

Hmmmmm.....I am interested to see over the coming months what, if anything, comes of this.  My friend has started something good...she has been a catalyst for pursuing ideas I have been vaguely considering for some time, getting my thoughts going beyond speculation and heading toward concrete contact and discovering the possibilities out there in the broader church community.  

Okay God, let's see what happens next!


bullwinkle said...

I was raised in the Anglican church and can't recall people being adverse to the sharing of testimonies... Only thing I can think of would be that it is old school High-Anglican, sort of a "keep your mouth shut, we're British after all" type of mentality.


Susan said...

I had a similar experience to yours in the Anglican churches in Alberta. While there was no pressure to share personal things and people who preferred not to share personal faith stories were respected, no one got freaked out if someone sharing sounded a bit "over the top" occasionally. Maybe the wider spread abhorrence to testimonies here is once again more of a prairie culture mentality than a specifically Anglican mentality? It has me very curious and I am going to do more research for my own interest. My friend has me thinking now, as well as helping me temper my expressions of enthusiasm when I share with local Anglicans, so it is all good.