I see "Christian" jargon like this being disseminated across the internet from time to time, particularly following events like the recent tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut.
A few days ago, a friend of mine quite appropriately asked some very important questions about the message on this particular t-shirt. She made no apologies about the fact that she felt insulted and infuriated by this sentiment. It applies a seemingly personal, direct blame against her, given that she does not call herself religious or a Christian, and she has no problem with God not taking front-and-center in our schools.
I appreciate the time and thought she put into the questions she raised, as well as the anger she was brave enough to express. Here's what I had to say in response:
put, a statement like that is bad theology. It projects certain
attitudes onto the character of God when, really, we have no business
saying just who God is or what he has allowed. Bad things happen all
the time because we are broken people. We’re flawed and complicated and
often do not operate under anything but blind selfishness. There are
certain things that as people of faith, we just have to accept as
unknowable. I can try to wrap my brain around this world and God and
all the hurt, but try as I may, I will never understand all of it. God
is God, and I am not.
you’re right. The assumption, “God isn’t written into the curriculum
or etched into walls, therefore, he isn’t here for us” is absolutely
wrong. We can write God out of every textbook and sideline him from
formal public conversation, but that does nothing to deter God’s love or
his desire to see us live full, long, meaningful lives as we were
created to have.
statement tastes just as bitter and mean to me as it does to you, and
I’m a Christian. I resent every insinuation and sentiment those
words express. They do not speak for me and the God I’ve grown to know
and love. These are the small, foolish words of small, foolish people who
have taken it upon themselves to literally attempt to speak for God. I,
too, am a small and often foolish person, but I’m long past thinking I
have the authority to announce the will of my Savior.
am sorry that you feel judged, accused, blamed, and disrespected.
Sentiments like the one you mention are so politically loaded and
theologically skewed that, to the majority of us, they paint a picture
of holier-than-thou Christians peering down their noses at the
“unbelievers.” You have every right to feel infuriated and insulted.
Just know that I respect your perspective. You’re speaking out with
very valid anger as a compassionate human, a mother, and a person who
doesn’t stand for anyone—religious or not—who walks around waving a big
stick like they’re some sort of god.
the end of the day, I think the thing we need to remember is humility.
We need to listen more than we speak. We need to ask more questions
and make fewer arrogant pronouncements. We need to be present and
mindful in the midst of our neighbors’ pain and anger without trying to
mitigate, justify, or sensationalize the tragedy they are dealing with.
I read this article yesterday and found it very appropriate and helpful
in responding to the situation. I hope it is helpful to you in reiterating some of my thoughts as mentioned earlier.
asking the tough questions, loving those girls of yours, and sticking
up for what you believe. And know that it’s okay to be angry, to have
more questions than answers, and to wrestle with God. He’s not going