Keep it real…keep it 100. That’s what they say nowadays.
Yet, the Church is known as a place of hypocrites: those who don’t keep it real.
Ask folk who don’t go to church why they don’t go. I often hear them say: “because I don’t have time for fake people.” Ain’t nobody got time for that!
There’s enough fakeness in the world. The last thing people want to do is spend time with fake people pretending to be holy. As if holding your finger up a certain way or making the sign of the Cross at the right time could make you “holy.” As if lifting up hands in adoration or kneeling reverently makes someone “holy.”
The Church is Not Equip to Keep it Real
By modern design, the Church can’t help but be fake…phony. Everything is symbolic in church. And how can you keep it real when everything you believe in is merely a symbol?
Baptism is only a symbol of our death and resurrection in Jesus Christ. Communion is merely a symbol of Jesus’ Body and Blood. Marriage is only a symbol of…whatever the hell Christians believe it’s a symbol of.
Christians don’t want to keep it real. They want to keep things symbolic.
But how can mere symbolism be of any value to your real life? How can mere symbolism sustain you in your real struggles? How can a symbolic faith get you into the real promised land?
If the promised land isn’t real, then fine: you don’t need to keep it real. Symbolism will be enough. But if what is symbol is not also real, then you might as well give up hope. Yet for us to truly be the Church, Christians must take what is symbolic and learn to keep it real.
This week I teach the importance of real symbolism and symbolic reality, and why it is important to our life as Christian people. The Church can and must keep it real. If not, people will continue to wonder if our God is merely symbol.
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