True “conversion” is not the same as joining a church, believing certain things to be true or false, and having strong opinions on political affiliations, sexuality, and reproduction. If those things are the totality of one’s religious experience, that’s much more indicative of tribal indoctrination than of any kind of meaningful “conversion”. No offense – I am just plainly saying what many of us are too afraid to say or even think outloud. I am not trying to convince any of you, that’s simply what I’ve come to.
You see, that kind of “Sunday morning all-smiles Christianity” does not excite or interest me much anymore. My firm belief is that when one is willing to “take the red pill” and think beyond these culturally acceptable labels and descriptions which don’t even begin to penetrate the reality, and see beyond these shallow categories into which we try to pigeonhole God and his Kingdom, there’s a much deeper and much more meaningful experience that can be entered into. And that’s what I am after.
True conversion into Christ is all about a vibrant, authentic, genuine, completely unique amalgamation of Jesus Christ into your distinct personality, and about reflecting that unique projection into the world through your thoughts, words, and actions. It’s about becoming authentic, whole, imbued by God, and completely unafraid of what others may think or say about you. When that begins to happen, you suddenly realize that no religious denomination, no political affiliation, and no ideology is big enough to accommodate your holy, intimate, sacred union with the Creator of All Things.
You begin to shed the externally imposed expectations and molds, so that you can form your own unique exoskeleton outside of institutional “coverings”, and so that you can gain your own distinct voice and identity, thereby reclaiming your unique destiny. And then you will be free to flow together with others on the same path as you, and that would be the ekklesia-church done the way God intended it to be done all along.
When such metamorphosis happens, sometimes it looks like the valley of the shadow of death. You die to things that you once held important. But on the other end of that desert is a green pasture. All it takes is discovering and getting used to the presence of the Good Shepherd, so that we may fear no evil, and so that we may be led out of the desert of our twisted perceptions and into the place of God’s reality with its green pastures and still waters. God is real, and he waits for us to discover him. It’s much more than “being a good Christian”. It’s about being possessed by God to the extreme, and through that being more free than ever.
Never mind that I am being a bit poetic here. That is me speaking the language of heart (images, metaphors, and analogies), as opposed to the mind (definitions and intellectual abstractions). Please do not mistake this for religious grandstanding. I mean every word I say here. This stuff is very real. It can be quite disorienting at first, it’s really messy, but I can’t think of any grown-up who had transitioned into God’s reality in any kind of meaningful and verifiable way without making it through such desert experience. Before getting plugged into Christ, we need to make sure we are really unplugged from the world and from religion. And that decision point is what separates boys from men, and girls from women.
If you are on the same path, or have already pretty much made it to the other side (in this life, that is) – please share in comments.
Comments on: "Conversion into Christ – a life-changing experience" (5)
I especially like this paragraph. True “conversion” is not the same as joining a church, believing certain things to be true or false, and having strong opinions on political affiliations, sexuality, and reproduction. If those things are the totality of one’s religious experience, that’s much more indicative of tribal indoctrination than of any kind of meaningful “conversion”.
So many churches and so many religious people who attend church often remind me of the movie “The Stepford Wives” where everyone becomes a clone fitting into a certain mold with no tolerance for differences of opinion or individual thought. When I think about Christ’s disciples, I see men who didn’t always agree and were coming from opposite ends of the political sphere but they were taught to “love one another” and taught to bring forth the Kingdom of God in this world — preaching good news and healing the sick and caring for the poor, orphans, widows and marginalized, etc.
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Wow, Stepford Wives – that’s a gem!! Perfect metaphor for what I was trying to describe. With your kind permission, I will be using this insight from now on. So good.
Jesus’ disciples were a motley crew – but he was secure enough and had a powerful enough presence to get them to put God and their kingdom their mission above all of their differences.
Thanks! Glad you like the analogy and you are totally welcome to use it. There are so many movies that on the surface you wouldn’t realize how profound they are but as you consider the messages and images, you gain so much insight. Jesus had such amazing trust in His father. He didn’t worry about the opinions of those who weren’t religious and he didn’t worry about the opinions of the religious. Many Christians don’t worry about the opinions of those who aren’t religious but often worry about the opinions of the religious. So it just becomes easier not to rock the boat or not have a difference of opinion leading you to give up the liberty you have in Christ (a true freedom and liberty that always honors and exalts Christ) so then you just don’t say anything and slip right into becoming a clone or Stepford Wife.
Thanks for sharing this! I have come to a point after 25 years of being in the church that I need to unlearn so much doctrine and learn who Jesus really is.
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That’s a good place to be! Many more things tend to open up after this point.
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