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... not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some,
but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
Over the last few weeks, in what would seem to be “coincidence,” I’ve had conversations with a number of people who are struggling with disillusionment with the church. Some have already decided that they simply will not go back to any church. Never. Ever. Ever. In another “coincidence,” somebody posted a link to a video on Facebook, which I just finished watching. The title: “Why I Won’t Go Back to Church.” So the subject has presented itself to me multiple times as I’ve sought inspiration for this week’s blog.
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble . . .”
What a week it has been! Another horrific tragedy in Boston. More hateful comments placing blame for it on Massachusetts’ embrace of marriage equality. It makes my soul tired that people can be so cruel, so vicious, and - yes, I’ll say it - stupid as bat poop! It is exhausting to try to fight off the anger; or, at least, to let it pass through me and not allow it to take root in my spirit. I’m so tempted to decide that when Jesus said, “Love your enemies” and “Forgive seventy times seven,” he couldn’t have meant these [insert your expletive of choice].
It is so disheartening, to me, when words that should affirm my faith and bring comfort do not have that effect, because we have heard them so many times, following so many human-on-human atrocities, that they come off sounding trite and empty. But one reaction this week struck a chord, not only with me but with hundreds of thousands of people. Actor/comedian Patton Oswalt posted a reaction to the event on his Facebook page. It went viral. As of this writing, it has been shared 252,447 times. Make that 252,448: