The Marginalization of the Average Joe and Practice of Selective Compassion by Christian and Secular Americans

The Marginalization of the Average Joe and Practice of Selective Compassion by Christian and Secular Americans

I think conservative writer Ann Coulter’s editorial about Christians who shuffle off to assist ebola patients in Africa – which got her all sorts of vitriol by both left and right wingers, Christians and Non Christians – has been proven right.

I first wrote about that in another post or two:

(Link): Ann Coulter’s Article Hits Home — Literally, by S. Harris – And: further thoughts on U.S. Christian Priorities and Reverse Racism

(Link): Strawman Argument: “You’re Creating a False Dichotomy” – No, I’m Not (Re: Coulter editorial and U.S. Christians aiding foreigners)

After American, caucasian movie actor Robin Williams died from suicide a few days ago, on the one hand, there was, yes, a lot of sympathy and sadness expressed for him and his family online in the days that followed, as it should be.

But there were also some very insulting, unsympathetic views published, and at that, based on William’s skin color or his mental health problems, not only by guys like Bill McNorris and Christian Matt Walsh, but by atheist writer P Z Myers.

As far as I can tell, the Bible does not adhere to the concept of “privilege” as believed by liberals. The American progressives harping on “privilege” causes them to refuse to show care and concern for the groups they believe to be in power.

Jesus Christ taught that people’s sins comes from their hearts (from within), not from their environment, and he did not endorse the view that because you or your group has been systematically mistreated or oppressed at the hands of another group, that this excuses your sin, or makes it acceptable for you to hate your oppressor, or for you to refuse to show compassion to that group.

In Jesus’ day, ancient Israel was ruled first and foremost by the ancient Romans, and on a lesser level, by the religious ruling class (the priests and Pharisees).

A lot of American liberals will say it’s impossible for an American woman to be considered sexist, or for female dislike of men to be considered sexist, because men in American society hold all the power. They will say that because whites held all the power in the USA, that one cannot consider a black person’s prejudices against whites a form of racism.

Then we also get into the identity politics and hate crime laws, where liberals believe that someone should receive a harsher, or specific charge of hate, for, say, mugging someone in a certain group that they consider unprivileged.

For example, a crime that is motivated by hatred of skin color, where a white guy punches a black guy in the face, is supposed to be worse than, say, a white guy punching another white guy. A guy murdering someone who happens to be homosexual is supposed to be a hate crime, but the same act is not considered a hate crime if a homosexual or heterosexual murders a heterosexual guy.

I have never understood these positions, because, for one reason of a few, it doesn’t square with the Bible.

Jesus never once taught the Jews of his day that it’s okay for them to hate the Romans, nor did he excuse their dislike of the Romans, on the premise that the Romans held all the “privilege” or “power.”

Continue reading “The Marginalization of the Average Joe and Practice of Selective Compassion by Christian and Secular Americans”

Advertisements

Ann Coulter’s Article Hits Home — Literally, by S. Harris – And: further thoughts on U.S. Christian Priorities and Reverse Racism

Ann Coulter’s Article Hits Home — Literally, by S. Harris – And: further thoughts on U.S. Christian Priorities and Reverse Racism

Below you will find a link to, and excerpts from, an editorial by S. Harris I agree with.

One of the most annoying things about the backlash against the Coulter piece is how Christians arguing against it were tone-deaf or had tunnel vision. They totally mis-read her piece, or assumed things about it that she did not say.

Most of the criticisms I read were operating under the erroneous belief that Coulter said, “Americans should never, ever help foreigners.” -When she said no such thing.

Another variation on that were the idiots who thought Coulter was saying, “Americans should only help Americans, screw the world!” She also wasn’t saying that.

Look, if you are an American living in the USA and you have “Grandpa Joe” living under your roof, you’ve taken him in because he can no longer care for himself….

And good old Grandpa Joe has dementia and is in a wheelchair, and you’re not getting him proper medication, nursing visits, bathing him, -BUT- you are flying to Africa on a plane every four months to go build one room huts for Africans (and you pride yourself in taking these trips to help orphans in Africa), you are the selfish jerk with messed up priorities, not Ann Coulter for calling you out on that hypocrisy.

And sad to say, most Americans do indeed ignore Grandpa Joe, or guys and women like him, to go on humanitarian trips to places like Africa.

And they think this is so compassionate and loving. They cannot see the hypocrisy or insensitivity of it. If God wanted you to go help in Africa, he would have had you born there.

It makes no sense for the Africans to fly to the USA to help Americans, the French to fly to Brazil to help Brazilians, the Saudis to fly to France to help the French, the Russians to fly to Canada to help the Canadians, the Aussies to fly to Russia to help the Russians.

In an extreme situation, in a natural disaster type thing (which to me is different than an on-going disease outbreak that has a 90% fatality rate), I’m seeing a stronger rationale for action.

Where a nation gets blown off the map by a typhoon, or what not, by all means, let’s see the world come together and all nations mail food and fly in equipment and blankets, but the rest of the year, no, it’s a waste of time and resources for everyone everywhere to do these things.

According to several news reports I’ve read, the ebola disease is 60 – 90% fatal (depending on medical treatment), and the whole thing that kicked off the Coulter piece in the first place were these naive, American, evangelical do-gooder doctor and missionaries who flew down there to “lend a hand.”

Now these do-gooders have ebola and were flown back to the United States, and which potentionally exposes other Americans to this.

Someone on another site raised what I felt was a decent analogy – how people voluntarily go on mountain-hiking trips but then get stranded on the mountain, so that other emergency respondents have to risk their lives, and spend a buttload of money, to fly helicopters and what all to rescue them. It’s a similar scenario.

Here is the editorial I agree with:

(Link): Ann Coulter’s Article Hits Home — Literally by S. Harris

Excerpts:

    Ann Coulter’s recent article “Ebola Doc’s Condition Downgraded to Idiotic” really hit home — if you’ll excuse the pun.

    Coulter makes a good argument as she questions why American missionaries don’t stay home and help a country in the violent throes of spiritual decay. She accuses them of slinking off to Third World countries (and coming back with Ebola), while they abandon the most consequential nation on earth — their own.

    It’s a thought I’ve often had as I’ve watched church after church suck their congregations dry for overseas missionary work while the old lady in the house next-door struggles for food — physically and financially.

    These same missionaries are lauded as heroes for going to Africa when their hometowns are awash in drugs, pornography, murders, domestic abuse, pedophilia, and a thousand other byproducts of spiritual darkness.

    I would go even farther and liken the situation to child adoption in the U.S. Couples, often citing impossible U.S. adoption laws and red tape, have been going overseas to adopt children for years while nearly 400,000 American children remain in foster care.

    Roughly 102,000 of those are waiting to be adopted at any given time, and another 58,000 become available for adoption after their parents’ rights are terminated.

    I know a Christian couple who recently adopted five siblings from Bhutan. Another couple, misled about the health of a newborn, adopted a Russian baby who needed so many operations they nearly went bankrupt and ended up divorcing.

    All of this happens while a little boy or girl from Nebraska or Kentucky grows up in the uncertain love and insecurity of foster care. I’ve rarely met a couple who adopted an American-born child.

    The truth is, instead of staying and fighting, Americans developed a pattern of running to other countries — whether for missionary work, adoption, or cheaper labor and smaller overhead.

    …Ann Coulters article was harsh, but it needed to be said.

    … Still, Ann Coulter was right to raise such relevant questions: “…Why do we have to deal with this at all? Can’t anyone serve Christ in America anymore?”

I encourage you to visit the author’s editorial and read the whole thing, because in it, in a part I did not quote above here, she even has an example in there of a time she brought her India- born- and- raised friend to an American church with her as a guest.

Harris said she was a Christian wanting to find a home church. She said she invited her India-born friend to attend with her one day at a new church she was checking out, so he did.

Harris said that when the church people noticed her friend was from India and was a Hindu, that they swarmed around him to welcome him but they blew her off (she was, to them, an obvious American).

Harris said the next day, the church ladies visited the guy at his home – they had obtained his address the day before – and brought him baked cakes and other goodies, but they brought nothing to Harris.

And Harris was the Christian looking for a church – her Hindu friend did not give a rat’s ass about joining Christianity at all. He was delighted to get free cookies from the Christians but thought the church ladies naive (that was how I understood what she wrote).

I could be mistaken, but I would assume that Harris’ Hindu friend probably had brown skin, probably spoke with a heavy accent – so it was obvious to the church people he was foreign.

I have noticed that U.S. Christians are in fact inclined to do missionary work toward, or help, only certain groups of people – among them, dark skinned people, and especially ones who are pagan in religious beliefs (ie, Hindu, Muslim).

(Though evangelicals will at times make narrow exceptions in America to help suffering Americans, but usually only the most severe, “down and out” cases, such as homeless crack addicts and women who work as strippers in night clubs.)

There seems to be little to no concern by white Christians for white skinned, middle class, “average Joe” people in America.

It’s weird, revolting, and not at all biblical to play “pick and choose” in who you will show compassion to. Everyone is supposed to be your neighbor, not just orphan kids or ebola patients in Africa, or homeless crack addicts.

And no, I’m not a “white pride” person or “white nationalist” or whatever they call themselves. I don’t mind if whites help dark skinned people.

What I am saying is I am sort of turned off by how so many American white Christians view dark-skinned foreigners as exotic pets and/or as being more “worthy” to save or help than their white, native neighbors (and we also have dark skinned Americans in America who could use help). It’s kind of a form of reverse-racism, and Christians should have no part in it, but they do.

Years ago, during what seemed to be a trend of white Americans adopting black children from Africa (and greasing the wheels by throwing their money at charities in those nations), I saw editorials by dark skinned Africans* who wrote they found the white American do-gooder mentality towards Africans offensive and condescending – they say they don’t want or need a “white savior” to fly in and rescue them. You would think white Americans would get a clue.

*(some of the journalists either self-identified as being black people, and/or they had a staff photo of themselves accompanying their editorials.)
——————————-
Related posts:

(Link): Ann Coulter’s Very Accurate Ebola Post Being Criticized As Being Insensitive – But It’s Not; It’s Accurate

(Link): White Evangelicals, White Fundamentalists, and White Baptists: White Americans Don’t Need the Gospel or Compassion, especially not the affluent or middle class

(Link): Why Christians Need To Stress Spiritual Family Over the Nuclear Family – People with no flesh and blood relations including Muslims who Convert to Christianity – Also: First World, White, Rich People Problems

(Link): Radical Christianity – New Trend That Guilt Trips American Christians For Living Average Lives

(Link): To Get Any Attention or Support from a Church These Days you Have To Be A Stripper, Prostitute, or Orphan

American Teen Missionary Raped Several Orphan Children in Africa, One As Young As Four – Being Equally Yoked is a Joke

American Teen Missionary Raped Several Children, One As Young As Four – Being Equally Yoked is a Joke

Given that Christian men are just as apt to be baby-rapers as Non Christian ones, I think it’s a safe choice for an unmarried woman to hedge bets by marrying an atheist or agnostic, as it would marrying a self professing Christian, even one who works for charity.

The cherry on top is that some preacher or dude affiliated with the charity referred to this pervert (the child rapist) as a “true man of God” or some such. See articles below.

(Link): Matthew Durham Christian child rapist: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

    Matthew Durham is the aid volunteer from Oklahoma who the feds say confessed to raping HIV-positive orphans while he was on one of his humanitarian missions to Kenya.

    …You can read the full criminal complaint here, on page seven, section 15, there are vivid descriptions of the sex acts in question. Warning Disturbing Content: (visit their page to view material)

    … 2. The Feds Say He Had Sexual Relations With HIV-Positive Orphans

    …On his last trip, between April 30 and June 17, 2014, the feds say, Durham insisted on staying in the children’s home rather than with a host family.

    Continue reading “American Teen Missionary Raped Several Orphan Children in Africa, One As Young As Four – Being Equally Yoked is a Joke”

Brief Critique of the J. Daly editorial: Does Casual Sex Empower Women?

Brief Critique of the J. Daly ed: Does Casual Sex Empower Women?

In the midst of looking up Jim Daly’s contact information (so I could tweet him a link of my previous page), I found this linked to on his Twitter page (he wrote it):

(Link) Does Casual Sex Empower Women? by Daly

Here is the part that caught my attention:

    The cultural impact of casual sex

    Sadly, the cheapening of sex is having a long-term impact on marriage… which, in turn, negatively impacts parenting. It’s a tragic chain-reaction of events that work together to undermine the institution of family.

I know that Focus on the Family has a new family-centric film to promote ((Link): unfortunately), and I see the heading there says “cultural impact,” but Mr. Daly, the fact is, some women never marry and never have children, including Christian women.

The Bible does not say God promises all women a marriage partner not even the ones who pray for one and who want one.

If you see my previous post (link), you can see the stats on the number of singles in America.

Many women today are staying single these days, some against their wishes.

(That’s right, the typical conservative Christian canard that women are choosing to stay single because they hate marriage, hate men, or put career above marriage, or had tons of marriage proposals but turned them all down because they were too picky, are false).

There are plenty of Christian women such as myself (though I am half-agnostic now), who were raised in church and by Christian parents to expect, plan for, and count on marriage.

I had hoped for marriage. I still find myself single. I did not plan on being never-married into my 40s. I may never marry.

I am still a virgin. I have never had children.

The church does not support adult virginity – they ignore or shame adult celibate singles (a few links with examples of that can be found at the end of this post, and all over this blog if you search).

It makes no sense, and I see no biblical support, to suggest the only or main reason to argue against casual sex is on the basis of how it may “impact marriage and family.”

Continue reading “Brief Critique of the J. Daly editorial: Does Casual Sex Empower Women?”

Why Christians Need To Stress Spiritual Family Over the Nuclear Family – People with no flesh and blood relations including Muslims who Convert to Christianity – Also: First World, White, Rich People Problems

Why Christians Need To Stress Spiritual Family Over the Nuclear Family – People with no flesh and blood relations including Muslims who Convert to Christianity – Also: First World, White, Rich People Problems

I know I have discussed this subject in previous posts, either in posts by myself or excerpts by other people, and sometimes only indirectly, such as…

      (Link):

The Isolating Power of Family-Centered Language (How churches exclude singles and the childless) by E A Dause

(Link): Study: People today living alone more than ever before

(Link): Neither Fully Widow Nor Fully Wife – Married People Will Be Single Again

(Link): Widower to Advice Columnist Talks about Being Stereotyped by Married Couples or Ignored by Other Marrieds Since His Wife has Died

(Link): Married People Who Find Themselves Single Again – Spouses With Dementia / Married People Who Are Lonely

(Link): The Walking Dead television series – Virginity and Family – One of TV’s Most Popular Adult Characters is a Virgin and Single And Most Are Okay With That

(Link): What Christians Can Learn from The Walking Dead Re: Family, Singleness, and Marriage

But I wanted to address another angle to this.

I have in the past heard of Muslims who convert to Christianity and are then ostracized by their family of origin.

A former American Muslim found himself in that very situation and recently gave an interview on a Christian television program, which you can watch here; his family have nothing to do with him any longer because he converted to Christianity:

(Link): A Journey From Islam

    Author and former Muslim Nabeel Qureshi shares about his dramatic conversion to Christianity.

You can also watch a copy of the video here:
(Link): A Journey from Islam, on 700 Club’s site

Here are a few additional resources on this topic, with more comments by me below this assortment of links and excerpts:

      (Link):

Testimonies of Muslims who became Christians

(Link): Muslims converts face ostracism in France

    (“Zee News,” February 6, 2007)

Paris, France – Muslims are converting to Christianity in their thousands in France but face exclusion from their families and even death threats.

(Link): Kurdish Converts to Christianity Ostracised By Society and Family

(Link): CARING FOR THE MUSLIM CONVERT.

(Link): Egyptian Muslim who converted to Christianity goes into hiding

(Link): When Muslims Convert

      By Daveed Gartenstein-Ross
    Commentary Feb. 2005

In the Islamic world, there is a broad consensus, both popular and scholarly, that apostates deserve to be killed. A rich theological and intellectual tradition, stretching as far back as Muhammad and his companions, supports this position.

Though official proceedings against those who reject Islam are fairly rare–in part, no doubt, because most keep their conversion a closely held secret–apostasy is punishable by death in Afghanistan, Comoros, Iran, Mauritania, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Yemen.1 It is also illegal in Jordan, Kuwait, Malaysia, the Maldives, Oman, and Qatar.

The most common dangers faced by Muslim apostates come from their own families.

At a recent evangelical convention in Falls Church, Virginia, a couple of female converts from Islam told a reporter about their fears as new Christians. One woman said that when her family finds out, “I know they’re going to disown me if they don’t kill me.”

The second woman had similar fears. “My brothers haven’t spoken to me in the last couple of years, and that was only because I married an American,” she said. “Can you imagine what they would do if they found out I was a Christian?”

…. Roy Oksnevad, a missionary with the Evangelical Free Church in Minneapolis, tells of a Turkish convert whose brother, an ultra-conservative imam who also owns a lucrative carpet and jewelry business, threatened to have him killed if he ever returned to Turkey.

A Farsi-speaking pastor [name withheld by request] in Oakton, Virginia, told the Washington Times, “I’ve seen some people who’ve come from Iran to the United States to persecute, if not kill, in order to bring back their relatives to Islam.”

Even when apostates do not face physical danger from their families, they are often ostracized. This experience is not unique to Muslims, of course; it is a fact of life for many people who convert out of the faith into which they were born.

But for Muslim apostates, the loss of family and community support can carry a heavy price, especially if they are immigrants. If they lose their livelihoods or the means to maintain themselves financially, they can be forced to return to their home countries–and that can amount to a death sentence.

Many conservative Christians are emphasizing the traditional family unit far too much.

Not only are many adults today staying single indefinitely or past their late 20s, and not only do some become widows or get divorced, but there are people who are ostracized and cut off from their family of origin for accepting Jesus Christ.

I wonder what churches near to where these former Muslims (who convert to Christianity), whether in the USA or overseas, do to help these individuals, now that they are totally alone, now that their biological families have rejected them?

And I don’t mean just financial help, but, do the Christians in these churches adopt these new converts as new family?

Do Christians invite these former- Muslims- now- Christians to their homes weekly or nightly for dinner, or invite them over for holidays?

The world can be a very lonely, difficult place if one has no spouse and no flesh and blood family to turn to, but many Christians, especially in the United States, seem to forget that.

There are people in the world who walk to Christ which means they are walking away from their only support systems they have ever known – their families: their mothers, fathers, uncles, aunts, brothers, sisters, grandparents.

Will American Christians stop obsessing over traditional marriage, parenting, and the “nuclear family,” to reach out to these types of people who give up everything to follow Jesus?

Judging by the American church’s response to American- born individuals who are single, those who never-married, or who are divorced or widowed, my guess is sadly, no.

One of the best things you can do for someone else is to offer yourself, your time, and your companionship. Some people are lonely and hurting and have nobody to turn to and could use the friendship, a shoulder to cry on, and encouragement.

But your married Christians who have children, the ones who attend mega churches, seeker friendly churches, evangelical, Reformed, and Southern Baptist churches, only hang out with other married with children couples, and they continue to market self-absorbed programs and sermons about how each individual can achieve his vision or dreams in life, how a person can have a better marriage, and be his or her “all.”

Truly, these are the concerns of people who have no serious challenges in life. These sermons and ministries are irrelevant to 50% or more of the U.S. population.

If you are a middle class husband and father living in the American ‘burbs, and you feel that weekly sermons about how to “reach your potential” or “how to have a hot marital sex life” are relevant, applicable to all (or most), or of equal concern to all, may I suggest you may be living in a bubble and need to realize there are people out there that are not as fortunate as yourself?

You have what is called “rich people’s problems,” also known as “white people problems,” or “first world problems.” Visit the (Link): First World Problems site to see (humorous) examples.

I can’t imagine how churches offering potlucks for middle class, married couples with children, or offering another ‘ten steps to a great marriage’ sermon series is going to aid, comfort, or help people like the 25 year old single Muslim man who just left all he had to follow Jesus, or the widower who is living alone at 72 years of age, or the never-married adult who is 36 years old.

I will leave you with the words of Christ:

    34 “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.

35 For I have come to turn
“‘a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
36 a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’

37 “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

And, from Matthew 12,

    46 While Jesus was still talking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, wanting to speak to him.

47 Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.”

48 He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” 49 Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers.

50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”

September 2015 edit:

Muslim refugees express their loneliness being without families on Eid al-Adha

(Link):   The loneliness of Eid al-Adha for refugees

No Man’s Land – Between Agnosticism and Christianity / Also: It’s Emotional Not Intellectual (Part 1)

No Man’s Land – Between Agnosticism and Christianity / Also: It’s Emotional Not Intellectual (PART 1)

This will be a series of posts where my thoughts wander in and out and all over, and it rambles, but there is a point or two behind it.

Since I’ve been in a faith crisis the last couple of years, somewhere between being an agnostic and a Christian, I have noticed I don’t fit in anywhere. I reside in No Man’s Land.

(Even before then, when I was a total, committed Christian, and politically, I was, and am, right wing, I still didn’t fit in at most blogs and forums, including political ones, and including ones for right wingers!

I tend to be one of those personalities who annoys or angers everyone, even those on “my side” of an issue, except a small number of people, who are either on my side of a topic or not, who “get me” or who appreciate where I’m coming from – again, this is true for even the ones who disagree with me on whatever topic we are discussing.)

I am in this really weird place now, where I am critical of some aspects of conservative Christianity, and see where conservative Christians get some doctrines and other things wrong, but, too, I am not fully on board with militant atheism (I find the New Atheists to be arrogant, vile, hateful and rude), and I don’t even care for lukewarm atheism.

Nor am I in the camp of anything and all things liberal Christianity, except where I think they get the occasional point correct (such as their rejection of gender complementarianism).

Since drifting away from the Christian faith more the last few years, I more often began frequenting forums or blogs for and by atheists, ones by liberal Christians, ones by ex Christians, or by Christians who were abused by a former church who remain Christian but who dropped out of Church, or who now are on a crusade to expose abuse by preachers or the absurdity and harm of current evangelical gimmicks.

THE MILITANT ATHEISTS

A clarification: when I say I have been visiting atheist forums and blogs more often, I am very picky about which ones I regularly visit.

I do not like the frothing- at- the- mouth, extremely bitter, biased- against- Christians- type atheistic communities.

The bitter atheist groups sound like a bunch of irrational, hate-filled loons who reject Christianity for emotional reasons, but who lie to others and themselves and say, “Oh no, it’s purely intellectual.”

But their unrelenting, insane amount of hatred at any and all things God and Christian, is just a total turn-off to me, so I try to avoid such sites.

These angry, always-ranting atheists are really nothing more than Fundamentalist Atheists or Taliban Atheists. They are just as dogmatic about their atheism as Muslims are in their Wasabi Islam or Baptists are in their Neo Fundamentalism.

Really, those types of atheists are just as bad as the religious groups they claim they hate, but they don’t seem to spot that they are. It’s ironic – and it’s hard to stomach the day in, day out anger and hatred, so I try to avoid their sites.

HYPOCRITICAL CHRISTIANS VS NON HYPOCRITICAL CHRISTIANS

Also, you have to be honest with yourself, which I do not find militant atheists to be, by and large: not every single Christian is a hypocrite, jerk, idiot, dullard, or complete jackhole.

I say this as someone who is very fed up with Christianity and Christian persons myself these days.

But your average militant atheist will never admit that some Christians are in fact okay and not being hypocrites.

I have known and met a few Christians who were sincerely trying to live the Christian faith out, such as my mother, who is now deceased, and her mother before her (my grandmother).

I’ve met a few honest, sincere Christians online who do help people and show compassion to the wounded.

So it’s not fair to completely dismiss the entirety of Christians and their faith or treat them all like jerks because some are liars, mean, or abusive.

Which is not easy for me personally, because at the same time, I do keep noticing that a lot of self-professing believers do NOT live out what the Bible says.

Many self professing Christians today, for example, do not protect victims, such as young church members who have been sexually molested by preachers.

Nor do many church goers today hold accountable preachers who bilk their church goers out of millions to buy big mansions and jets.

These idiots, these lemmings, actually defend their greedy pastors online, which I’ve written about here: (Link): Your Preacher Sucks – and People Have a Right To Say So And Explain Why.

Then you have a conservative or evangelical culture, which claims to care deeply that people preserve sex until marriage, but if you actually find yourself 40 years of age and still single – and therefore still a virgin, such as myself – these same churches and Christians do not offer you any support.

You either go ignored, or preachers and talking heads of such groups “run down” and insult celibacy as well as older, celibate adults. Churches treat single (and especially celibate) adults as though they are flawed, lepers, weirdos, or losers.

Churches wrongly counsel abused wives to return to their spouses – this is particularly true, again, of churches or Christian groups who buy into “biblical womanhood” (aka “gender complementariansm”) or “patriarchy.”

Churches and average Christians also remain ignorant or callous about matters pertaining to mental health issues, from P.T.S.D. to depression and anxiety attacks.

Some Christians wrongly and insensitively teach that “real Christians” can never get depression or other mental health maladies.

Or, some Christians believe and teach that prayer, faith, service to the poor, or Bible reading alone can cure one of mental illness.

Still other Christians (or the same type) will shame and guilt suffering Christians for using anti-depressant medications, or for seeing secular or Christian psychiatrists and therapists (see this link for more, “Over 50 Percent of Christians Believe Prayer, Bible Reading Alone Can Cure Mental Illness (article) – In Other Words Half of Christians are Ignorant Idiots Regarding Mental Illness”).

Yet other Christians are incompetent at, or unwilling, to provide more ordinary, “every day,” run- of- the- mill comfort to other Christians who are hurting, such as a Christian who is stressed out over a job loss, someone who is in mourning for a deceased loved one, etc.

Christians are dropping the ball in numerous ways.

And this failure, this huge failure, causes life long Christians like me to look long and hard at the faith and wonder if it’s true at all.

It causes even someone such as myself to ask if the faith is true, because

  • it doesn’t appear to be working,
  • it doesn’t make a difference in people’s life who profess it,
  • most who claim to follow Christ don’t actually do what he taught,
  • and some Christians refuse to hold Christians caught in bald faced sin accountable but excuse them for the sin,

~ and it makes you wonder “what is the point, then.”

I find this discrepancy between confessed belief and actual practice shocking, because I myself sincerely tried living out the faith since childhood.

Also, my Christian mother was a role model for me, and she genuinely, consistently lived out and by biblical teachings, including getting up off her ass and actually HELPING people (giving them money if they were in a bind, cleaning their homes for them when they were sick, listening to them cry and rant about their problems for hours without judging them or interrupting them, etc).

I am not seeing most other Christians do any of this. They say they believe in those things but then they do not do them.

BLOGS AND FORUMS FOR SPIRITUALLY ABUSED OR THOSE HURT BY CHURCHES

Before I actually get into this topic (which I discuss more in Posts 2 and 3), here is some background leading up to it.

As far as the sites I have visited by liberal Christians, ex Christians, atheists, as well as sites by Christians for the spiritually abused:

By and large, these have been wonderful, supportive sites and groups to visit (the ones run by Christians for hurting Christians).

I have noticed, though, that there are problems even within these types of communities, and I don’t entirely fit in at them, either.

Continue reading “No Man’s Land – Between Agnosticism and Christianity / Also: It’s Emotional Not Intellectual (Part 1)”

Churches Ignoring The Olds: Increasing Population of Senior Citizens In America – Yet Churches Keep Obsessing About Kids and 20 Somethings

Increasing Population of Senior Citizens In America – Yet Churches Keep Obsessing About Kids and 20 Somethings

If you’re not married with a kid at home, most churches will ignore you and your problems and needs.

Many conservative Christians remain, above all, obsessed with married parents, followed by youth (see here), and special interest, tear-jerking groups (e.g., starving, third-world nation orphans, strippers, and people caught in sexual trafficking, etc).

Which is all fine and good, Christians, yes, should be helping orphans and the like… but not at the detriment of people in other groups who could also use a hand up.

I’ve noticed the peculiar habit of Christians to be willing to show compassion only to certain, limited groups – anyone who does not fall in their particular cherished groups (eg, strippers, pole dancers, and orphans) is persona non grata, and if you go to them for help, you will receive condescending, rude lectures about “count your blessings,” and “you have life no where near as hard as strippers and orphans, so no help for you, go suck it up.”

(Link): Increasing Population of Senior Citizens In America

    by S Simms

As Baby Boomers age, we are seeing an incredible growth in the number of people in a given age group at any one time. In fact, there are now more Americans that are at least 65 years of age than at any other time in our nation’s history.

This can have a number of impacts on society and is also a marker for things to come. In addition to having a greater number of members in the workforce, senior citizens can also help project the increased longevity of our country moving forward.

According to a new census bureau report, there were over five million more people age 65 and older living in the United States in 2010 than in 2000. This also represents an increase of over 37 million people than in 1900.

As we know, advances in medicine, technology and our species’ ability to adapt to changing conditions have contributed to our increased life span. In order to get a full understanding of the senior citizen demographic in the U.S., you can take a look at some of the statistics from the census report.

Senior citizens make up 13 percent of the populations while those age 64 and under comprise 87 percent.

As we get older, females significantly outnumber males in our population.
The largest percentage of elderly people live in the Northeast, while the elderly population is growing the fastest in the West.

——————-
Related posts this blog:

(Link): Mature Christians Need to Stop Allowing the Under 30 Crowd to Direct the Entire State of Christian Affairs

(Link): Elder / Senior Abuse and Neglect – Christians need to stop worshipping youth – there are other needy groups out there

(Link): Churches Idolize Youth But Do Nothing to Protect Them

(Link):  Ministering to the Unmarried at Home and Abroad by C. Darnell (article focuses on middle aged, never married adults and ministering to the elderly)

‘Strip Church Network’ Focuses on Stripper Outreach Outside of Las Vegas Sex Industry

‘Strip Church Network’ Focuses on Stripper Outreach Outside of Las Vegas Sex Industry

I am considering becoming a stripper. Why? So Christians will do outreach and ministry to me. God knows they ignore me as a childless, never married, adult virgin.

(Link): ‘Strip Church Network’ Focuses on Stripper Outreach Outside of Las Vegas Sex Industry

    BY JESSICA MARTINEZ, CP REPORTER
    December 4, 2013|5:19 pm
    Strip Church Network, an organization that first aimed at reaching out to women primarily working in Las Vegas strip clubs for the last five years, has taken their ministry efforts nationwide, spreading hope to strippers in other cities where the sex industry also exists, say its leaders.

    The organization is a network of ministries that are led by women around the country who are trained and equipped with resources that become useful when they make late-night visits to strip clubs with the intention to show the women that they are loved and valued by them and by God.

    “In 2011, we realized that we needed this type of ministry all across the nation, not just in Vegas,” said Tara Ulrich, the Strip Church Coordinator, to the Christian Post. “We knew our team couldn’t just travel around the country visiting strip clubs, so we decided to train and equip other women to do this in their own cities.”

See my previous post:
(Link): To Get Any Attention or Support from a Church These Days you Have To Be A Stripper, Prostitute, or Orphan

Christian evangelical adoption movement perseveres amid criticism, drop in foreign adoptions – yes, they care about orphans but don’t give a squat about adult singles

Christian evangelical adoption movement perseveres amid criticism, drop in foreign adoptions – yes, they care about orphans but don’t give a squat about adult singles

Recall my previous posts:

(Link): Christian evangelical adoption movement perseveres amid criticism, drop in foreign adoptions

    Oct 2013

    To many Christian evangelicals, their commitment to finding homes for the world’s orphans is something to celebrate — and they will, gathering at hundreds of churches across America to direct their thoughts and prayers to these children.

    But the fifth annual Orphan Sunday, this coming weekend, arrives at a challenging time, and not just because the number of international adoptions is dwindling. The adoption movement faces criticisms so forceful that some of its own leaders are paying heed.

    The gist: Some evangelicals are so enamored of international adoption as a mission of spiritual salvation — for the child and the adoptive parents — that they have closed their eyes to adoption-related fraud and trafficking, and have not fully embraced alternatives that would help orphans find loving families in their home countries.

    Some adoption advocates in evangelical circles have angrily rejected the criticisms. But the president of the coalition that organizes Orphan Sunday, Jedd Medefind of the Christian Alliance for Orphans, has urged his allies and supporters to take the critiques to heart even though he disputes some aspects of them. Alliance partners, he says, should be eager to support a broad range of orphan-care programs and to avoid the temptation of viewing adoptive parents as saviors.

    “When the dominant feature of our thinking becomes ‘us as rescuers,’ we’re in grave danger,” Medefind wrote on the alliance website. “What often follows is the pride, self-focus and I-know-better outlook that has been at the root of countless misguided efforts to help others.”

    One leading critic of the movement comes from within evangelical ranks — Professor David Smolin, director of the Center for Biotechnology, Law and Ethics at the law school of Baptist-affiliated Samford University in Alabama. Smolin plunged into the debate after he and his wife adopted two daughters from India in 1998, then learned that the girls had been abducted from an orphanage where they’d been placed temporarily by their mother.

    The evangelical movement “uncritically participates in adoption systems riddled with child laundering, where children are illicitly obtained through fraud, kidnapping or purchase,” Smolin wrote in a law journal article. “The result is often tragically misdirected and cruel, as the movement participates in the needless separation of children from their families.”

    Many of Smolin’s concerns were reinforced with the recent publication of “The Child Catchers,” a book about the evangelical adoption movement by journalist Kathryn Joyce.
    It details cases where foreign children adopted by evangelicals were mistreated and looks at problematic Christian-led adoption initiatives in such countries as Ethiopia, Liberia and Haiti — where Idaho church group leader Laura Silsby briefly was jailed for arranging illegal travel of children after the 2010 earthquake.

    Continue reading “Christian evangelical adoption movement perseveres amid criticism, drop in foreign adoptions – yes, they care about orphans but don’t give a squat about adult singles”

Janet Mefferd Concedes In One Radio Show that Christians “Lose Jesus” in all the “Family Values” Talk and Emphasis / Also FIC and Youth Worship

Janet Mefferd Concedes In One Radio Show that Christians “Lose Jesus” in all the “Family Values” Talk / Also FIC and Youth Worship

—-PART 1. CHRISTIANS TURNING FAMILY INTO IDOL —-

I e-mailed Ms. Mefferd (or is it Mrs?) several months ago to let her know about how terrible Christian culture treats singles; she had a guest on her show who made it sound as though all Christian singles are deliberately staying single, and Mefferd seemed to agree with that view.

I wrote to Mefferd to correct this view point. I was polite. I let her know that many Christian singles desire marriage but are unable to find a Christian partner to marry.

Still others choose not to marry, which is fine too, and it is a choice that should be respected.

The Bible does NOT command people to marry and procreate.

Marriage (and hence baby making) is depicted in the New Testament as being OPTIONAL and left up to each individual. It is not something God commands of people.

I have also noted in worry in past posts on this blog that Mrs. Mefferd (like many social conservative Christians) commits the error of making much ado about “family values,” which not only needlessly excludes singles, the divorced, the widowed, and childless, but which tends to make an idol out of family, something the Bible teaches AGAINST.

The Bible calls believers to full allegiance to Jesus Christ and Christ’s agenda, not to the “nuclear family” (and not to endlessly engaging in culture wars: ranting against liberalism and homosexuality).

Christ nowhere taught that it is the agenda of His followers to rally around and promote the “traditional family.”

Allegiance to Christ is painted in the New Testament as Christians supporting other Christians (who may not be related to them by flesh and blood) emotionally and financially, and secondly, to spreading the Gospel to Non Christians.

The New Testament does not teach Christians to constantly fight with the godless heathen over abortion, homosexual marriage, promoting the nuclear family, and other such topics.

Perhaps Ms. Mefferd caught my e-mail and that is what prompted her to re-evaluate the obsession with Christians defending the Traditional Family, I don’t know.

However I was encouraged to hear in a recent broadcast she stopped to criticize the American evangelical obsession with “family” to say something like, “Jesus gets lost in all the family value rhetoric Christians bandy about.”

And she was angry about it, you could hear it in the tone of her voice. Good for her.

I can’t recall exactly which show it was on, but it was a late Sept 2013 or early October one.

Whatever episode it was, her comments about “Jesus being lost in Christian emphasis on family” begin around the 29 minute or 30.05 mark (I jotted down the time on a piece of paper on my desk).

I think it may have been in this show, but I’m not sure:
(Link): Janet Mefferd Show-10/2/2013 / Janet talks with Peter LaBarbera from Americans for Truth.

-Even if it’s not that show with the particular comments by Mefferd, the guy on the show whom she interviews mentions at the 36.45 mark that fornication is wrong (sex between a man and woman not married).

However he notes it has become incredibly politically incorrect to speak out against fornication these days.

I have noticed this too, even from Christian people on Christian blogs; I have met so-called Christians on Christian sites who think it’s judgmental to point out that pre marital sex is sinful, and they want to erase the word “fornication” from the vernacular, or they make fun of the term as being stody, old fogey, and judgmental.

I hope in the future Ms. Mefferd has her eyes opened to the bigger picture as it concerns this topic, that the evangelical, Christian fundamentalist, and Baptist idolization of marriage and procreation (having babies) goes AGAINST what Jesus taught, and it also marginalizes the never married, the divorced, infertile couples, and widowers and widows.

And when, or if, her eyes are opened, I hope she begins devoting radio programs exposing it.

There is nothing wrong with wanting a family, wanting marriage, or with Christians occasionally refuting liberal anti-traditional marriage points – that is all well and good…

However, Christians have taken things to the extreme, to the point if a Christian does not marry and pop out 2.3 children by the time they are 30 years of age (if at all), they are ostracized by most churches.

And Jesus warned against that very thing!

Jesus did not teach that his kingdom was to be built by Christians marrying other Christians and popping out babies.

—-PART 2. YOUTH WORSHIP —-

On another recent show, Mefferd interviewed a FIC church guy (Scott Brown from the National Center for Family-Integrated Churches) who argues against Sunday School. He thinks kids should be included in the main worship service of churches.

Here is a link to that podcast – but I’m not sure if this is the one with the comments where she criticizes family worship:
(Link): Mefferd podcast – Hour 3- Janet discusses youth ministry with Scott Brown from the National Center for Family-Integrated Churches.

I am wary of FIC (Family Integrated Church) people because they idolize the family.

See for instance these posts on this blog:

However, I do agree with the guy in the Mefferd interview that many churches are too keen to win over the youth, and when this mentality takes over a church, that pretty soon, the youth culture spills into the church at large, where even services intended for adults starts reeking of a Metallica, Miley Cyrus, or Justin Bieber concert, with guitars and laser shows, with the preacher wearing a goatee and skinny jeans, all trying to be cool and hip for the kids.

The end result of trying to make church into a rock concert, or trying to make it trendy or “cool,” to attract the teens is that the people over 25 and 30 feel weird, left out, overlooked, and out of place.

So some of these people over ages of 25, 35, 40, stop attending. Sermons become really shallow and flippant and takes a backseat to the entertainment spectacle.

I am glad the FIC guy recognizes that catering to the youth ruins Christianity at large, I just wish FIC people would stop idolizing the family, because not everyone is married with a kid.
———————-
Related posts this blog:

(Link): Youth Fixation in Churches and how it alienates older Christians

(Link): Refreshing: Christian Researcher Disputes that Youths Are Leaving Churches in Droves, Disagrees that Churches Should Be Family Focused

(Link): Getting People Back to Church / Christian Event Targeting ‘Apathetic’ Youth *BARF*

(Link): Ignatius the Ultimate Youth Pastor & Teaching Christian Singles About Sex (humor – but it does a great job criticizing church obsession with youth)

How Christian Obsession with Orphans Is Creating Problems (article) – Also: confirms my previous warnings about Christians ignoring Christians to help only special classes

How Christian Obsession with Orphans Is Creating Problems (NYT editorial) – Also: confirms my previous warnings about Christians ignoring Christians to help only special classes

As I have been saying on this blog for months, one major mistake in American Christianity (specifically, fundamentalists, Baptists, and evangelicals) is that they neglect to carry out the Bible’s command for Christians to care for and about other Christians primiarly (Galatians 6:10), but tend to pick “special interest groups” to shower compassion upon (eg, homeless crack addicts, strippers in sex clubs, African orphans).

Here is a page reporting on how this Christian obsession with adopting Chinese and African orphans, and orphans from other nations, is creating problems:

(Link): The Evangelical Orphan Boom

You will have to click that link to read the whole page. Here are several quotes from it:

    By KATHRYN JOYCE
    Published: September 21, 2013

    IF you attend an evangelical church these days, there’s a good chance you’ll hear about the “orphan crisis” affecting millions of children around the world.

    These Christian advocates of transnational adoption will often say that some 150 million children need homes — though that figure, derived from a Unicef report, includes not only parentless children, but also those who have lost only one parent, and orphans who live with relatives.

    Evangelical adoptions picked up in earnest in the middle of the last decade, when a wave of prominent Christians, including the megachurch pastor Rick Warren and leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention, began to promote adoption as a special imperative for believers.

    Adoption mirrored the Christian salvation experience, they argued, likening the adoption of orphans to Christ’s adoption of the faithful. Adoption also embodied a more holistic “pro-life” message — caring for children outside the womb as well as within — and an emphasis on good deeds, not just belief, that some evangelicals felt had been ceded to mainline Protestant denominations.

    Believers rose to the challenge. The Christian Alliance for Orphans estimates that hundreds of thousands of people worldwide participate in its annual Orphan Sunday (this year’s is Nov. 3).

    Evangelicals from the Bible Belt to Southern California don wristbands or T-shirts reading “orphan addict” or “serial adopter.” Ministries have emerged to raise money and award grants to help Christians pay the fees (some $30,000 on average, plus travel) associated with transnational adoption.

    However well intended, this enthusiasm has exacerbated what has become a boom-and-bust market for children that leaps from country to country. In many cases, the influx of money has created incentives to establish or expand orphanages — and identify children to fill them.

    In some cases, agencies may hire “child finders” to recruit children of the age and gender that prospective adoptive parents prefer, sometimes from impoverished but intact families. Even nonprofit agencies with good reputations may turn to such local recruiters in countries where they don’t already have established partners — or where the demand for children exceeds the supply.

    The potential for fraud and abuse is high. Orphanages tend to be filled by kids whose parents want better opportunities for them, while the root problem — extreme poverty — goes unaddressed, a Unicef worker in Ethiopia told me. Worse, some families in places with different cultural norms and legal systems relinquish their kids believing that it is a temporary guardianship arrangement, rather than an irrevocable severance of family ties.

    Continue reading “How Christian Obsession with Orphans Is Creating Problems (article) – Also: confirms my previous warnings about Christians ignoring Christians to help only special classes”

British Church for Atheists Sounds Sadly Like Most Seeker Friendly or Evangelical U.S. Churches – but they are getting one thing correct

British Church for Atheists Sounds Sadly Like Most Seeker Friendly or Evangelical U.S. Churches

This British church for atheists sounds pretty similar to many evangelical, Baptist, and seeker friendly churches in America.

The article (linked to much farther below in this post) describes a group of atheists who want weekly community (some of the atheists are former Christians), and these atheists sing rock songs during their “church” services.

If that doesn’t sound like American churches today I don’t know what does.

A lot of seeker friendly, Baptist, and evangelical American churches have turned into nothing but impersonal, social clubs with cool rock bands, with the sermon consisting of mainly pop culture references and a series of practical how-to steps (like how to get a raise at work).

Not that I am opposed to rock music in church (though I prefer traditional music in church myself), nor am I opposed to a little humor being interjected into a church service, but.

If your church service is identical to that of this atheist church in Britain, you may be doing church wrong.

I do think the “atheist church” is doing at least one thing correctly that Christian churches have failed to do: meet the emotional needs of every day people.

This article mentions how atheists want to meet with each other regularly to discuss any difficulties in life they are experiencing; they need friendship to help them through tough times.

The Bible instructs Christians to do this very thing for other Christians: to bear one another’s burdens and to weep with those who weep, to provide a community and a sense of belonging to all, regardless of age, marital status, etc. Churches have failed at this.

People are lonely, and not everyone has a flesh and blood family to turn to. A lot of adults such as myself have never married, and I’m in my 40s now, and some of my family have died off already.

Churches, however don’t give a crap about meeting my needs.

They don’t care about older, childless, never married adults, or other demographics that fall outside their nauseatingly cherished “mommy and daddy with 2.5 children at home”.

Depending on which denomination or church one belongs to, some Christian groups have a “suck it up” attitude towards the ‘average Joe’ hurting Christians: many Christians don’t care to help the average Joe, middle class, guy or gal who is having a problem.

If you’re an average Joe who just got laid off from your job, and you’re afraid and nervous and need financial help or just need to vent about this situation to someone, Christians doesn’t want to hear it.

Most Christians won’t even offer to help you through your tough financial time, either, such as, by giving you free groceries from the church pantry for a couple months. (I have not been in this situation myself but have seen it played out by others.)

If you are an average Jane Christian who has been hurt because a loved one just died, your spouse divorced you, or whatever issue you are having, and you are needing emotional support (or even would appreciate concrete help, such as your rent paid a month, someone from the church mowing your lawn for you while you recover from surgery in bed), you can forget about it.

Most Christians do not give a rat’s ass about an average Joe or average Jane Christian who is going through a trial in life.

Most Christians only show and demonstrate compassion to a very narrow set of groups:
domestic abuse victims; child abuse victims; homeless drug addicts and alcoholics; sex workers (adult and child); starving and homeless orphans in Africa and third world nations.

For example: (Link): Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church Is on Mission to Fulfill Isaiah 58 – this story says Osteen’s church is giving free toiletries to homeless people in his city. That is great, but how do his church members help other church members? Do they do anything to help the never married, childess adults among them? Here’s a quote from the page about Osteen’s church:

    Members of Pastor Joel and Victoria Osteen’s Lakewood Church who have a calling for missions take part in a variety of local opportunities to serve their community, and many were volunteering their time and spiritual gifts on Saturday, wearing T-shirts that read “Serve God, help people, Isaiah 58” at Feed the Children food pantry, the Beacon, a support center for the homeless, and ministering through street evangelism outside a Harris County jail.

Again, that is all great, but what is that church doing to help the Christians among them, and Christians from other churches or other non-church-attending Christians in their area?

Is Osteen’s Lakewood church offering to pay the rent for an elderly church member who is on a fixed income and so on? If all they are doing is running around helping Non Christians in their city, they are failing.

One reason Christianity is supposed to look appealing to Non Christians is that they should see Christians loving and helping each other. If I were a homeless person, I don’t think I’d see the benefit in joining a church or believing in Christ, if His own followers are not even helping one another.

If you’re a Christian already, and do not belong to any one of those groups I mentioned above (such as homeless person, starving African orphan, stripper at a sex club, etc.), most Christians will not help you, even if you go to them and ask.

Rather, most American Christians will chide you, accuse you of having a “pity party” (one wonders if they would ever consider telling one of their precious orphan Africans, homeless crack addicts, or stripper women they minister to: “stop having a pity party!”); or, they will feed you religious cliches (Romans 8.28 is always a favorite); they will give unsolicited, heartless advice, and all in all, refuse to sit with you as you weep, which is what you really need (and maybe practical assistance, like money or free food). You know, like the Lord commands them in the Bible to do.

No, no, American Christians don’t actually want to love their Christian neighbor as themselves.

The vast majority of American Christians only want to love on African orphans as themselves, but see, that’s easier, because it only involves sending a check or a bucket of rice over the mail.

Mailing off a check to some charity, or visiting a homeless shelter once a month for an hour, doesn’t take as much effort and time investment as inviting a hurting Christian to your home for a few hours a month and letting them talk to you, uninterrupted and without judgement, as they pour their heart out over whatever they’re going through.

Churches are failing to provide honest to God community and support that people are looking for and really need.

Most churches are headed by greedy preachers who only care about how much money they can make off their members and they treat church as though it’s a business.

Of course, the members are at fault here. A lot of them don’t care to create a real community. They want to zip in for their 40 minute service, not get really close to anyone, and zip out. Some of them want to be entertained with rock bands and preachers wearing Hawaiian print shirts. The preachers are happy to oblige.

I do think there are a lot of Christians who want a real church, not the whiz bang entertainment spectacle, but I fear there are some Christians who do want the shallow church experience because they’re not willing to do the deeper work, which means, investing lots of time with relationship building with people they are not related to by blood.

Volunteering once a month at a domestic violence shleter where you read a Bible story for an hour to a group of the shelter residents does not make you a stellear Christian especially if you are ignoring and blowing off the everyday Christians with everyday problems who come across your path who ask you for on-going help (ie, emotional support/friendship) but you blow them off with speeches and platitudes.

Continue reading “British Church for Atheists Sounds Sadly Like Most Seeker Friendly or Evangelical U.S. Churches – but they are getting one thing correct”

To Get Any Attention or Support from a Church These Days you Have To Be A Stripper, Prostitute, or Orphan

To Get Any Attention or Support from a Church These Days you Have To Be A Stripper, Prostitute, or Orphan

Well. Good luck getting any support if you are a Christian who has remained celibate and single into your 30s and older. Churches would rather serve and help strippers, orphans, homeless people and prostitutes than singles.

Note that I am not saying it is wrong for Christians to help strippers, orphans, and so on, only that I condemning them for being very selective in when, where, and to whom they offer help and compassion.

Christians will help a stripper or porn star but not a Christian woman who is a virgin who has remain unmarried into her 40s. There’s something very wrong with Christians showing preferential treatment to some categories of people, such as helping strippers and prostitutes, but not celibate Christian women who are single.

It looks to me as if you want or need community, friendship, support, or help from most churches that you must become a stripper, a whore, or an orphan in Africa, or a homeless bag lady downtown.

It’s so odd that so many Christians are so quick to help people stuck in sexual sin, or who willfully engage in sexual sin, but treat Christians who have remained sexually pure like garbage.

I guess I can go to work as a stripper in Nashville, and then this pastor’s wife will fellowship with me and bring me home-cooked meals:

(Link): Tennessee Pastor’s Wife Begins Ministry for Strippers in Nashville

Excerpt

    BY JESSICA MARTINEZ, CP CONTRIBUTOR
    August 21, 2013|5:40 pm
    “Strip Church” ministry based out of Nashville, Tenn. began after a pastor’s wife fasted for 21 days in late 2012 for a new purpose, only to learn God was calling her to reach out to strippers and women in the porn industry.

    “I had one clear direction from God, and it was “go feed the strippers.” I had no idea what that meant, but it was pressing so hard on my heart that I had to obey. I realized the homosexual, stripper, child molester, atheist, drug addict, Muslim and abortionist is not the enemy, they are the mission field,” said Stevens to The Christian Post.

    Stevens, who helps her husband, Todd Stevens, lead Friendship Community Church in Mt. Juliet, Tenn., was bewildered but willing to serve so she made her first call to a strip club in downtown Nashville, where according to Stevens, the porn industry market is “huge.” After telling the manager of Déjà Vu that she wanted to go to the club and take food for the dancers with no strings attached, she was surprised that he invited her the following week.

    “She doesn’t spread the gospel at Deja Vu, she just shows the girls love by listening, being attentive, and answering any questions they may have about life or faith,” said John Sanchez, general manager at Déjà Vu, to CP. “The reason she was invited was because she didn’t try to ‘spread the word.””

    During her first visit, Stevens took a home cooked meal to the club and stayed for 45 minutes to hold conversation with the women. There were no “high pressure sales pitch, no Bible and no tracts,” according to Stevens. Now, she goes twice a month for an hour before the night shift begins. In addition, she visits another club in the same area where she “shows God’s love in a practical way.”

    “My vision for the Strip Church ministry is to be able to provide free Christian counseling, free job placement, free GED training or college courses, free childcare, free medical care, and meet benevolence needs the girls may have,” said Stevens.

——————-
Related posts this blog:

Follow Up to This Post:

(Link): On The Bright Side

(Link): Ann Coulter’s Very Accurate Ebola Post Being Criticized As Being Insensitive – But It’s Not; It’s Accurate

(Link): Want To But Can’t – The One Christian Demographic Being Continually Ignored by Christians Re: Marriage

(Link): Never Married Christians Over Age 35 who are childless Are More Ignored Than Divorced or Infertile People or Single Parents

(Link): No, Christians and Churches Do Not Idolize Virginity and Sexual Purity

(Link): Church Gives Shoes to Homeless – Misplaced Priorities – Also: Audacity of Preachers To Shame the Hurting or Victims

(Link): The Bible Says Christians are to Help Other Christians First (not sex trafficked people, not orphans in Africa, not homeless crack addicts, etc)

(Link): Suffering and Misery Trend Du Jour

(Link): Part 2 – Suffering and Misery Trend Du Jour

(Link): You Don’t Need to Look Far To Find Hurting People Who Could Use Your Help and Compassion

Church Gives Shoes to Homeless – Misplaced Priorities – Also: Audacity of Preachers To Shame the Hurting or Victims

Church Gives Shoes to Homeless – Misplaced Priorities

Xtian = Christian

(Link): On Vulgar Language at This Blog -You have been warned.

BTW, there is some weird Asian- language site that keeps re-blogging my posts, and I wish they would stop. It’s weird.
Anyway. Back to the purpose of my post.
—————————————
Church Gives Shoes to Homeless – Misplaced Priorities

Does the Bible say Christians are to help widows and orphans? Certainly.

But it says that first and foremost Xtians are to help those within their own group (Galatians 6:10), not those outside of it.

Most often, Xtians fail miserably at meeting the needs of Xtians they already know, who may even go to their very same church.

One reason of several I am leaving the Christian faith is that Xtians don’t actually do what the Bible and God tells them to do when it comes to helping one another.

Christians did not help me get my needs met when I went to them at a very low point in my life.

At my time of greatest need, Christians brushed me off, or gave me judgement, cliches, platitudes, and criticism – when I needed love, encouragement, and sympathy. -All of which is free, by the way. I was not even asking for money.

Some of the same Xtians who did this, however, will sit there and cry crocodile tears of sadness over people they do not even know (such as orphans in Africa, domestic abuse victims in homeless shelters, etc).

I cannot conceive how you can feel sorry for little orphans in Africa, whom you don’t even know, but treat the hurting Xtian next to you weekly in church like she is a piece of shit, when she’s going through heartbreak in her own life, which you damn well knew about.

But it happens often, not just with me, but I’ve met other Xtians online who have similar stories.

Here’s the article that got me to pondering on these things again:

(Link): Florida Church Sends Congregants Home Barefoot, Collects Shoes for Homeless

    First Baptist Church of Fort Lauderdale, which is attended by about 2,000 people each Sunday, collected an estimated 700 pairs of shoes for the homeless during Sunday’s “Soles for Souls” event, according to Mike Jeffries, associate to the senior pastor.

I’m supposed to think that church is being generous or loving by donating a bunch of old smelly shoes to some homeless shelter?

BTW, if you’re going to donate shoes, you should send the shelter gift certificates, so they can fill any size request with BRAND NEW SHOES.

The article said these people who donated wore the shoes into the church service before sticking them up on the stage for donation. 🙄

Are they too cheap skated to buy BRAND NEW SHOES or to give the shelter GIFT CERTIFICATES? If you were a shelter person would you want to wear a pair of shoes previously worn by someone else, or would you prefer a brand new, never worn pair?

I’m more interested in knowing if that church follows Galatians 6:10 and serves the members of the body of that local church first.

Does that church provide a month’s worth of free groceries every so often to the seniors living on meager incomes? Do they drop by to scrub the toilet and dust the furniture and mow the lawn of the 35 year old never married member who’s on his back, recovering, after surgery?

Or does this church only run around raising funds and some used shoes for homeless shelters?

If the people at that church are ignoring, or shaming, the Average Joe in the pew of their church, but thumping their chests over how proud they are to be helping the homeless, screw them – and that would be God’s attitude as well, I’m pretty sure.

See Christ’s story of ‘The Good Samaritan’ to see what Jesus thinks about people who IGNORE the hurting RIGHT BENEATH THEIR NOSE to go perform some other religious duty, or to serve someone else, or do charitable deed to someone else.

If a fellow Xtian approaches you with a problem, don’t brush them off to go help an orphan or lecture him or her that “orphans have life worse than you,” because God (assuming He exists) put that person in YOUR PATH because God EXPECTS YOU TO HELP THAT PERSON, you nim rod.

If God wanted you to help African orphans, he would have arranged for you to be BORN AMONG THEM IN AFRICA.

But you’re a white person born into middle class American life (this problem seems more prevalent among white American Christians than other types of Christians I’ve seen).

Your “mission field” consists of the other people already around you – people in your neighborhood, your job, people you bump into at the store, and NOT AFRICA and NOT HOMELESS PEOPLE IN YOUR INNER CITY.

Unless God explicitly and clearly tells you he wants all your energies going to the homeless downtown or to poor people in Africa, assume it’s to help people you personally bump into on a day by day basis in your own city, GALATIANS 6:10.

PREACHERS WHO GUILT OR SHAME PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN HURT BY CHRISTIANS OR CHURCHES

I caught several minutes of the “Answers” show this weekend. It’s the weekly church show by preacher Bayless Conley.

The funny thing is, I usually agree with this Conley guy most of the time, but every so often, he says something that rubs me the wrong way or that I don’t agree with.

In this past week’s show, he was shaming and blaming people who say they are angry at church/Christians or who drop out of church because their church didn’t meet their needs.

He told the story of a woman who began going to his church. He said she was still quite angry over an incident from years before.

This woman said that at their old church, when her husband was sick for months, that nobody from her church helped her or her hubby. This really upset her, and she was still hurt or angry about it many years later. Conley was saying she should drop this and move on.

The problem is, it’s not just her.

I’ve seen numerous testimonies online by Xtians who said in their time of greatest need, their church did not come to their aid, with practical help, such as bringing over free food, mowing their lawn for them, etc.

Anyway, this Conley preacher guy stood there and criticized this woman or her attitude.

Conley told people who feel they’ve been done wrong by a church to keep going to church, and so on.

The audacity! The appropriate response to people who have been hurt by a church is NOT to BLAME THEM for HAVING BEEN MISTREATED (which is victim-blaming and is totally repulsive and anti-Christ), but to ACKNOWLEDGE THEIR WOUNDS.

You don’t blame an abused or hurting person for being hurt, shell shocked, understandably reluctant, or skittish from having been abused by a former church or by a Christian(s).

You don’t shame a hurt Xtian back into church attendance by appealing to some Bible verse or another, or by appealing to a sense of “Christian duty,” or by claiming they are having a pity party or feeling sorry for themselves, or whatever other insensitive malarky.

What Conley should have said is, “If you have been hurt by a church, I am so sorry. But please reconsider giving the church another try.” But he chose the “blame the victim” strategy instead, shaming and blaming people who have dropped out of church because they were hurt. Shame on Conley and preachers and Xtian laypersons like him.

WHAT PREACHERS CAN LEARN FROM DEALING WITH DOGS

If you come across a dog in an alley way that has been mistreated by previous humans, and the dog is either angry (growling) or whimpering (in fear, hurt), you get the dog to trust you by showing that dog consistent love and compassion.

You stop by every day, toss a few bits of food its way, and baby talk to it, such as,
“Oh what a good boy! Aren’t you a sweet puppy dog!”

You win the dog slowly over by displaying compassion and showing you are trustworthy; you earn the dog’s respect or trust.

You do NOT approach the wounded, scared, abused dog by yelling in a loud, angry, (or demanding and condescending) voice,

“The BIBLE says you are to forgive previous abusive humans and let me pet you! Repent you dog! REPENT FIDO! You are not to be in fear or nurse a grudge, that is a sin! Stop holding a grudge! Let me approach you and pet you!”

Taking that harsh, unloving, non- understanding approach to the dog’s abuse and its history will only cause the dog to mistrust you more.

And it’s stupid to think quoting a Bible verse at a dog – or human – is enough, or should be enough, to get them to instantly comply with what you want.

I’ve been hurt by other Christians, so I don’t really care if the Bible talks about ‘let us gather together to encourage one another blah blah blah.’ Those are just empty words on a page and mean nothing to me, as much of the Bible does these days.

Christians can’t even live up to the “love one another” and “love your neighbor” type verses but then they expect me to obey the “do not forsake the assembling together” verse? I don’t think so.

A note to preachers and regular church goers:
First live up to the “love one another” type verses, and then I will maybe consider returning to a church. Clean up your own life and your own church and fix what is wrong with you and your congregation before chewing me out over what you consider my flaws or for trying to shame me and guilt me over my non-attendance.
———————-
–Related posts this blog—

(Link): To Get Any Attention or Support from a Church These Days you Have To Be A Stripper, Prostitute, or Orphan

(Link): The Bible Says Christians are to Help Other Christians First (not sex trafficked people, not orphans in Africa, not homeless crack addicts, etc)

(Link): Suffering and Misery Trend Du Jour

(Link): Part 2 – Suffering and Misery Trend Du Jour

(Link): You Don’t Need to Look Far To Find Hurting People Who Could Use Your Help and Compassion

(Link): Do You Rate Your Family Too High? (Christians Who Idolize the Family) (article)

Single Adults – Why They Stay and Why They Stray From Church – Book Excerpts

Single Adults Why They Stay and Why They Stray (from church) Book Excerpts

Note: several questionable people have roles in this book, in the form of editing, or as contributors, such as…

    – a gender complementarian, Wayne Grudem; gender complementarianism (Link):

is not biblical

    ;
    -neither is “biblical counseling,” yet Edward T. Welch, who is a “biblical counselor” also had some kind of role in this book,
    – C. J. Mahaney – accused of being involved in a ten year cover up of child sexual abuse at his churches,

so I offer this link with a caveat.

The author of the particular chapter I am quoting seems okay, and I don’t see too much that I disagree with in his chapter.

What is really funny is that this book (I’m not sure when it was published, I am just now finding it today), echoes many of the things I’ve said on this blog before.

Edit: this book was published in 2003, but this is the first I am seeing it, or reading excerpts from it. It is incredible how the author noticed most of the same disturbing anti-singles views and trends that I have in this blog the last three years.

As I am a NEVER MARRIED woman, I am not going to present the full section under “divorce” in the chapter. You can visit the link to read it if you want.

The following is available for free on Google Books (this particular book is entitled “Pastoral Leadership for Manhood and Womanhood”) :
(Link): Single Adults in Your Ministry: Why They Stay and Why They Stray
by Dick Purnell

    … Do you know how many single adults sit in your congregation each Sunday? Recently I was speaking in a church to three thousand people. I asked for all the people who were unmarried and twenty-two years old or older to stand up. Over a thousand people stood up! The audience was surprised and gasped at the large number…

Do you realize that the number of single adults in America exceeds the total national population of all but eleven of the world’s 192 nations? How shocked would you be to discover that the number of single parents is greater than the entire population of Colorado and Tennesse combined?

According to the 2000 U.S. census 40 percent of all adults eighteen and older (forty-eight million) are single. We are seeing a tremendous shift in American social values.

The median age of a first-time marriage is now twenty-five among women and twenty-seven among men. The fastest growing family type is single parents.

If your church is in an urban area, the percentage of single adults near you is much higher than a rural area. Singles gravitate to the cities for jobs, things to do, and others to meet. They are searching for connection and community.

They are often afraid of loneliness, commitment, and isolation. Most of those under thirty have never been married. The average age of a married person’s first divorce is thirty-four. That means after years of marriage, they are thrown back into the dating scene. They feel awkward and unprepared. They face the same relationship challenges that teens face, but they feel out of place.

One woman said to me, “I am now single, but I feel married. I don’t want to be single, but that was forced on me.” They have been out of the dating world for so long that they have very little idea what to do. And no one is helping them or even having a discussion about some of these issues.

Most singles are invisible to churches.

… They represent every economic stratum you can imagine – everything from presidents of major corporations to the unemployed and all in between. Fifty-three percent of all unchurched adults are single.

But our churches are built on a mind-set of marriage, and singles are often neglected. They are the “Great Invisible Mission Field.” However, businesses are very aware of singles. If you look at the advertising on television or in magazines, you will find that a huge number of ads are geared to attract single people.

Sports clothing, beer, cell phones, and a myriad of other products are marketed to singles. They have the largest amount of discretionary income. But the church in general has a difficult time attracting them and capturing their attention and commitment.

Many single adults believe that the church excludes and ignores them. They feel like the church is either neglecting them or is just not interested in them. So single adults vote with their feet. They come to church for a few months or years; but when their needs are not addressed or they never hear a sermon addressed to their unique issues, they fade away and go somewhere else – or stop going to church altogether. They hear sermons preached on topics such as “How to be a Godly Husband” or “Becoming a Godly Wife.” But they have never heard a sermon on “How to be a Godly Single Adult.”

… [Singles] don’t stay because there is no emotional glue to keep them there. They are not the “squeaky wheel” that is going to ask the pastor to give a sermon directed toward them or to pound on the door of the budget meeting pressuring for more funding. They just fade away.

Are you desperate to attract single adults to your ministry and get them involved? Here is my top ten list on “Why Single Adults Are Turned Off by the Church.”

Number 10: Frivolous jokes degrade the single lifestyle.
Grandparents, pastors, and married friends all have jokes about singles. All the married people laugh, but the single buries the snub under a weak smile.

I was single for forty-two years. When I served as an assistant pastor in my middle thirties, I heard lots of good-natured jokes, but often the ribbing was not funny to me. “Hey, are you afraid to take the responsibility for a mate?” Here I was in charge of several significant ministries in the church, and they tell me I’m afraid to take responsibility?

“Maybe you are just too picky. Are you looking for a perfect wife?” In other words, if you lower your standards you may get somebody.

“You’re not getting any younger, you know.” That was supposed to pressure me to get moving? Sometimes I would get the big one: “What are you waiting for?” Like I better hurry up before I miss the “right one.” But isn’t there a sovereign God? His timing may not be my timing – or the timing of the people who ask me to hurry up.

In trying to encourage me, people would give what I call romantic testimonies: “I finally gave everything to God, and six months later I found the right one.” But I was forty years old and had been a full-time minister for over fifteen years.

Was there something I had not given up to God that some married twenty-year-old ha already given up to God? All the marriage formulas that people give singles may be individual experience they had, but those formulas are not normative for all believers. Why should I seek the holy grail of marriage if God wants me to be content in every situation?

After four years as a pastor, I resigned from my church. Even though I was no longer was the pastor, I continued to attend the church. A single female friend of mine from Kansas came to our city one weekend to visit some of her college buddies. I brought her to the 11 A.M. church service. As we were walking down the aisle, an elderly usher led us to a front row for seating. The organ was softly playing and everybody was kind of quiet. When we stopped to turn into the row, he handed my friend a bulletin and said to me loudly so most of the people could hear, “Hey Dick, when are you going to marry her?” I wanted to die right there, but first I wanted to punch his lights out.

These kinds of jokes will not attract singles to your church! No way! They degrade single life as if the only bright future is for married people. That idea is not found in the Bible. Even the apostle Paul stated that an unmarried person can have undivided devotion to the Lord (1 Cor. 7:32-35). He did not consider singleness a joking matter.

Number 9: Church leadership is mainly interested in the interests and needs of married people.
The pastor and leaders are usually all married with very little significant empathy or understanding of the unique needs and concerns of single adults.

Single Christians are rarely eligible to be members of the governing board. There are very few single senior pastors. The silent criterion of marriage eliminates singles from serving in many aspects of the typical church. If you carry that to a logical conclusion, the Apostle Paul would not be qualified to be a pastor or elder. Even Timothy would be shut out of the opportunity for leadership.

After four years as an assistant pastor, I wanted to become a senior pastor. I had a total of fifteen years experience in the ministry and two Master’s degrees. However, when I sent in my resumes, not one church ever asked me to candidate, because I had to write on the front page of the resume my marital status: “Single.” Who wants a senior pastor who is single?

It was a bitter experience. I was unqualified to be a senior pastor of a church because I did not have the “Mrs.” degree. Many men graduating from seminary have tremendous pressure put on them. If they want to rise above the level of youth pastor, they must be married. Why is marriage the unspoken golden key that unlocks the door to pastor advancement?

Number 8: Budgeted funds for single ministry are usually inadequate or nonexistent.
Many churches don’t budge anything for singles. When the churches that have budgeted some funds for singles ministry must cut the budget somewhere, the singles ministry often is the one that gets the ax. “Singles are adults – they can handle it,” the budget committee says. But the message that gets across is, “You are not as important as other people in our church.”

… The message the singles hear is loud and cleaer: “You are the lowest on the totem pole. Your needs come last. You are not worth our paying a minister who can meet your needs.” Therefore, singles respond with their feet. They say, “I’m out of here.”

Number 7: Singles feel the church neglects them.
They feel like barnacles on the side of the church ship – there but forgotten. Marriage is espoused as the norm, and singles just don’t fit the model.

I have conducted over three hundred single adult conferences throughout America, Canada, and twelve other countries. Yet only nine senior pastors stopped by to observe and/or greet the crowd.

The even was in their church, in their building, and these are adults. I remember each of the nine because they are so rare….

Number 6: There is a perception that single adults are morally loose.

If a person is not married by mid-twenties, there is something wrong, it is generally thought. A particular church was in the process of trying to hire a youth pastor. Since they could not find one for over a year, they held a congregational meeting to explain the progress they were making. The elder in charge presented all kinds of reasons for the delay in locating the right person for the position. At the end of his explanation, I stopped up and asked, “Does the person you are looking for have to be married?”

You could have heard a pin drop on the carpet. People gasped. It was the unthinkable question. The elder hemmed, and he hawed, and he slithered all over the platform. All I wanted was a yes or no. He was very obviously unnerved by my question. Finally some lady in the very back said, “What we need is a role model for the young girls. So I think he should be married.”

“You mean to tell me, in this entire congregation there is not one woman who’s a role model for the girls?” Silence.

“I tell you what I think the real reason is. You are afraid that a single pastor would be sexually frustrated and have sex with one of the teenage girls. Out of all the pastors I have known personally, four have had affairs and left the ministry in disgrace. Each of them was married. Almost all the other pastors I have read about in magazines and books who have committed adultery were married. True, married people do not have a corner on the market in becoming immoral. But you should not be prejudiced against a single adult simply because he is single.”

I tried to tell them that some of the best youth pastors in America are single. I wasn’t a very popular guy after that. The elders eventually hired a youth pastor. Yes, he was married.

Some churches won’t allow singles to teach Sunday school for fear these men and women will succumb to sexual temptation. That is unfounded fear. We all need the power of God to overcome temptation. Don’t single out single people as the most likely to succumb. That is unfair and inaccurate. Single adults want to be respected and trusted. Let them show by their faithfulness that they have a genuine relationship with God.

Number 5: Marriage is portrayed as normal for everybody.
If someone is not married by thirty something, there must be something wrong with him or her.
(please click on the “continue reading/ read more” link to see rest of the post. Thank you)

Continue reading “Single Adults – Why They Stay and Why They Stray From Church – Book Excerpts”

Trend Du Juor & Partially Off-Base Solution To – Sex Trafficking

Trend Du Juor & Partially Off Base Solution To – Regarding: Sex Trafficking

I disagree a tad with this author’s solution to the problem of sex trafficking:

(Link): To Fight Sex Trafficking, Fight the Ideology That Creates It, Expert Says

Before I get to that quibble, I wanted to complain a moment about how conservative Christians get “trendy” with causes, sometimes like secular culture does. I have written of this weird, odd habit of Christians before, in several posts, this is just one example: (Link): Suffering and Misery Trend Du Jour

Remember in the 1980s, when there was Hands Across America and LiveAid massive, public fund raising events and rock concerts? There was a real obsession with feeding the hungry, and in particular, hungry dark-skinned Africans.

Disclaimer: I think it’s great if Christians, or whomever, wants to feed hungry, and yes, the Bible encourages it; and no, I’m not opposed people of any skin color helping people of whatever skin color. I’m not opposed to people saving little girls or teens from sex trafficking, or helping orphans.

What has driven me up the wall for years, though, is this narrow focus on classes of suffering, and that many white Christians want to help only dark- skinned Africans, or other highly specific groups, such as American homeless crack addicts.

Your average, middle class Christian refuses to simply help the people who God (if He even exists) puts in his or her path daily – like maybe your 76 year old widowed neighbor, let’s say.

Maybe your elderly neighbor is lonely. Why don’t you invite her over for a spot of tea? Why don’t you mow her lawn for her, instead of running downtown to hand sandwiches out to… drunk homeless people you don’t even know?

Why not help the people in your immediate vicinity who need your help, rather than twisting your hands in concern over starving orphans you’ve never met on another continent, and mailing checks to “Feed Africa” charities you see advertised on television ministries?

There are Christian churches in Africa – but American Christians continue to behave as though there are no Christians in Africa.

I have noticed in the last five years an uptick in interest among Christians in the human (sex) trafficking situation. I’m sure human sex trafficking has been going on since time immemorial; why are Christians only showing interest in it lately?

Varieties of human suffering are not like fashions, one day 1860s hoop skirts, then 1950s poodle skirts, then polyester leisure suits, bell bottoms, then on to parachute pants and Members Only jackets. But Christians treat suffering in this way.

While I still see a lot of “feed the African” appeals on Christian TV shows, the overall spotlight seems to be on sex trafficking now. The attitude now seems to be, “Let’s forget about the starving African kids, now, the cooler, hip brand of human misery is six year old girls being sold as whores to adults, so let’s focus all our energy on that.”

Here are excerpts from ‘To Fight Sex Trafficking, Fight the Ideology That Creates It, Expert Says’

    By Napp Nazworth, Christian Post Reporter
    February 25, 2013

    PHILADELPHIA – In the fight against sex trafficking, the Church needs to address the root causes – the ideas in culture that break the linkage sex has to love, responsibility and children, Lisa Thompson, liaison for the abolition of sexual trafficking for the Salvation Army, said during a Friday presentation at The Justice Conference.

    “Sex trafficking is a battle of ideas,” Thompson explained during a pre-conference session on sex trafficking. The Church in America too often does not do enough to address the ideology upon which sex trafficking is based – “an ideology that disassociates sex from love, responsibility and children.”

    American culture embraces this idea, she continued, and it is “spewed upon us” by “media elites in our culture,” such as movies, books and TV shows.

    “One of the reasons sex trafficking is flourishing is that we, as a Church, do not do enough to address the ideology that disassociates sex from love,” Thompson explained.

    … “The Church is uniquely situated to do prevention,” Morgan said, through youth leadership and spiritual formation programs.

I appreciate that both ladies, Thompson and Morgan, are trying to fight this evil, I truly do. However.

With 80% -(or whatever the high rate is, stats are in other posts on my blog)- of conservative Christians fornicating (that is, having sex outside of marriage these days), and I think 80% is also a recent number I saw for number of conservative Christian men who are addicted to pornography…

And given that for decades now, preachers and Christian books have been telling Christians ‘sex is for marriage only,’ ‘don’t divorce sex from love,’ and all the rest of the usual sex shtick one hears from conservative Christianity mouthpieces…

If such propaganda and argumentation was not enough to keep Christian themselves chaste, virgins until marriage, and to keep men (and now, some women) away from pornography (and it has not for many of them, though certainly some have remained sexually pure), how oh how do these anti- sex trafficking women speakers expect the same rationale and arguments to work against sex trafficking of people?

I’ve seen a few secular news articles about sex trafficking, and some of the men who were caught soliciting sex from kids were employed as PREACHERS. That’s right, men whose job was to love people and spread the Gospel.

I have previous posts on this blog with lists of links to news articles about “Christians,” including preachers, who have been arrested for raping children, raping women, murdering people and similar, horrid things.

Regarding this quote from the article:

American culture embraces this idea [an ideology that disassociates sex from love, responsibility and children.”], she [Thompson] continued, and it is “spewed upon us” by “media elites in our culture,” such as movies, books and TV shows.

I hate to break it to her, but it’s not only “media elite” and secular movies, books and TV shows which have cheapened sex, but it is also the Christian church, certain preachers, and Christian culture in America today, that has cheapened sex and sexual purity and sexual self control. Rather than restate my arguments here on those points, I invite you to read my previous posts on those issues:

(Link): The Contemporary Church Undervalues Celibacy / Virginity [Christians do not support virginity, celibacy, or even traditional marriage, even though they say they do]

(Link): 50- Something- Year- Old Baptist Preacher Simulates Masturbation during church service in front of kids, teens, and adults – and the adults just sit there, do nothing to stop him. Same Preacher later arrested for statutory rape of teen girl

(Link): Preachers Who Use Strippers, Hula Girls, Topless Hunky Men, and Strip Poles During Church Services and Give Sex Diplomas to Teens – Yes, Really

(Link): [Christian personality with daily TV show] Pat Robertson Expects Men to Commit Sexual Sin (and it’s not the first time)

(Link – hosted on WND.com): The Church of Sex – mentions sex obsessed preacher Mark Driscoll and Ed Young Jr.

Excerpt:

    Exclusive: David Kupelian challenges Pastor Mark Driscoll about his ‘obsession’

    There’s a new form of Christianity sweeping the U.S. Its main focus: sex.

    …And while there is a surprising number of preachers, teachers and Christian websites today whose main focus is sex, the most prominent is Mark Driscoll, founding pastor of the wildly popular Seattle mega-church Mars Hill Church.

    …By the way, as runner-up for top mega-church pastor in “The Church of Sex,” I’d nominate Ed Young, senior pastor of Dallas-based Fellowship Church, who recently staged “a 24-hour bed-in with his wife atop his church,” a stunt designed to publicize his just-released New York Times best-seller, “Sexperiment: 7 Days to Lasting Intimacy With Your Spouse.”

    … However, let’s just state the obvious: Mark Driscoll is utterly obsessed with sex.

    He tells, for instance, the following story of one female member of his congregation who – and I quote – “brought her husband to Christ” by giving him oral sex, in accord with Driscoll’s specific pastoral advice to her. Here’s how Driscoll, during a Nov. 18, 2007, sermon in Edinburgh, Scotland, described this particular husband’s “conversion”:
    [(Link): Read the rest here]

Again, I appreciate that Thompson and the other lady mentioned in the article are speaking out against human sex trafficking, but I do not think telling Christians to remember or spread the word that sex should not be divorced from love will do much of anything to decrease the selling of females for sex.

Conservative Christians have been telling other Christians, and secular society (at least the teenagers), that sex is for marriage only for several decades now, and that has not exactly diminished the number of people – as teens or as adults – having sex outside of marriage, cheating on partners once they do marry, or using pornography.

I fail to see how the same strategy could be all that helpful in fighting sex trafficking.

A lot of Christians today actually mock and ridicule or criticize the idea that any adult can practice sexual self control (I refer you again to my previous post: (Link): The Contemporary Church Undervalues Celibacy / Virginity [Christians do not support virginity, celibacy, or even traditional marriage, even though they say they do]).

These are Christians doing the mocking and questioning of sexual purity/ celibacy / virginity these days, mind you, not just secular society, where one would expect to find it. You can’t win an anti sex trafficking situation when even Christians have thrown in the towel on sexual purity concepts, which they have.

See also (on this blog):

(Link): Why So Much Fornication – Because Christians Have No Expectation of Sexual Purity

(Link): Douglas Wilson and Christian Response FAIL to Sexual Sin – No Body Can Resist Sex – supposedly – Re Celibacy

Article: Christians Outreach To Porn Actors and Strippers – But Not To Older Christian Singles

Christians Outreach Into Strip Clubs, Porn Conventions to Share Love of Jesus

Article: (Link): Christians Outreach Into Strip Clubs, Porn Conventions to Share Love of Jesus

    Instead of ostracizing and condemning men and women who work in the porn industry, two Christian ministries from Southern California are among several in the nation that are reaching out to workers in strip clubs and porn conventions in an attempt to share God’s love for them.

There is another aspect of this article I’d like to discuss in a separate post, but here is the first issue I wanted to bring up.

Okay. So let me get this straight. Some conservative Christian groups, when they are not obsessing over homosexuals, abortion and religious malaise among 20 somethings, want to reach porn actors and strippers.

Seems the church is eager to engage just about everyone in American culture EXCEPT for half of that culture: singles over the age of 18, of which there is a very neglected percentage of those who are never married who are past age 30 (and older).
______________________________________________
Related posts this blog:

(Link): Never Married Christians Over Age 35 who are childless Are More Ignored Than Divorced or Infertile People or Single Parents

(Link): Part 2, The Parable of the Neglected Unmarried – Single – Christian

(Link): Never Married 38 Year Old Christian Guy Wants to Know Why Churches Treat Him Like a Freak

(Link): Large Atlanta Church Starts New Outreach To Get Missing or Forgotten Members to Attend – singles and never married not on their agenda

(Link): The Bible Does Not Teach Christians to “Focus On The Family” – The Idolization of Family by American Christians (article)

Atlanta Baptist Church Missing Person Project Missing the Unmarried – Charles Stanley on Singleness – Unanswered Prayer

Atlanta Baptist Church Missing Person Project Missing the Unmarried

Hats off to these guys – preacher Charles Stanley’s Baptist church in Atlanta – for at least attempting to de-focus on the usual evangelical, fundamentalist, and Baptist favored demographic of “young married couples with kids.”

This Stanley led Atlanta church is focusing on widows, “the needy” (their phrase), prisoners, and one or two other, usually- neglected- by- Christian groups. That is all fine and dandy, but I see no acknowledgement of un-married people in the list of people they hope to cater to.

Almost half the adult American population is single. A lot of Christians are in that figure, too. Where are the programs and appeals to unmarried adults in this “Missing Person” ministry by Baptist Church of Atlanta? Here is a link to their ministry:

(Link): Missing Persons Ministry (Atlanta Baptist Church, Charles Stanley preacher)

SINGLES

See the bottom of that page for the categories of people they are hoping to serve and reach – it includes “The Disabled,” “The Widows,” “The Orphans,” etc, but no mention of never-married adults past 30.

In last night’s broadcast of Stanley’s “In Touch” program, where he talked about people’s desire to be loved, he got on to this spiel about people who are still single, who would like to be married.

Stanley said it’s far better to be single than to be married to the wrong person. This is a common saying spouted off at discontent, unhappy singles, and does nothing to cheer us up.

I was engaged several years to an idiot, so I know that “being with the wrong person” can be worse than being single. But I do not appreciate my desire to still be married brushed off as though it’s unrealistic, stupid, or immature, and that is what that bit of common wisdom does.

Continue reading “Atlanta Baptist Church Missing Person Project Missing the Unmarried – Charles Stanley on Singleness – Unanswered Prayer”

White Evangelicals, White Fundamentalists, and White Baptists: White Americans Don’t Need the Gospel or Compassion, especially not the affluent or middle class

White Evangelicals, White Fundamentalists, and White Baptists: White Americans Don’t Need the Gospel or Compassion, especially not the affluent or middle class

I just wondered (Link): in a post on here the other day if writers from Crosswalk have been to my blog before, because within days of me publishing a post on something, the same material is blogged on their site.

I made a post pointing out that many white (middle to upper class) American Christians have a most strange preoccupation with helping dark-skinned foreign people (and Africa seems to be the preferred area, with some churches opting for Haiti).

I wrote more about that odd situation under the “Side Note” section of (Link): this blog post, and (Link): this post.

Also related to this: I have also written in a prior post or two about this annoying new trend among Christian preachers to make ordinary Christians feel guilty or horrible about living ordinary, everyday lives. These preachers are called “Radical” or “Missional.” You can (Link): read about them here.

Anyway, within a day or two of me mentioning the weird attitude by white middle- to- upper- middle class Christians that only dark-skinned people in Africa need the Gospel and need humanitarian aid, and that they seem to believe that the Gospel is not for white middle class Americans, this page appeared on a Christianity Today blog:

(Link): Suburbia Needs Jesus, Too

Not only are most well-off, white American Christians consumed with caring for dark-skinned Africans (that there are also white people born and raised in Africa seems to escape their attention), but when they do bother to look inwards (ie, to help fellow Americans), they only want to extend a helping hand to extreme sob stories, such as the homeless in the inner city, or crack addicts who are passed out in crack homes all day.

If you’re an “average Joe” or “average Jane” Christian, especially if you are white and in the ‘burbs, and/or if you’re middle class, and you are going through a tragedy in your life large or small (divorce, cancer, your dog just died, your mom just died, you just got laid off from your job, whatever your calamity is) most white American Christians will tell you to get over it or get lost.

Most white American Christians will not offer to give you – if you are a fellow white Christian – a couple hundred bucks for groceries, or offer to mow your lawn while you recover from your surgery, nor will they offer to sit and listen as you sob your eyes out.

Oh no. No no no. God forbid a white middle- to- upper- middle class Christian show compassion to any other white/middle class Christian who is going through a tribulation.

Most often, not always, but very very frequently, white, middle class, American Christians will say things to another hurting white Christians when said Christian approaches them for sympathy or help, such as…

    – “You live in the richest nation in the world. You have in-door plumbing. Two thirds of the world have to pee in a hole in the ground in 20 degree weather. You have it better than starving orphans in Africa, so shut up.”

    – “You’re not homeless. You’re not an abused wife living in a domestic abuse shelter.
    So what if your husband of 25 years just said he doesn’t love you and wants to run off with his 23 year old secretary, who he’s been having sex with the last six months?
    You could have life much worse, you know.You still have life more comfy-cozy than those homeless shelter people, so quiet down.”

    -“Get over it!”
    [I wrote a post about (Link): “Get Over It” here]

    – “Stop your crying and whining about your grandma dying last week, you big baby! You should be over that by now!
    Don’t you realize how blessed you are? You have central heating in winter and an in-door toilet! Street urchins in India who get sold as prostitutes would give their right arm to have your life.”

Yep, I have been on the receiving end of those types of comments first hand (and in my time of deepest pain), I’ve heard other Christians use those remarks against other hurting Christians, and blowhard preachers (such as John Hagee) like to shout those kinds of things at their audiences.
Continue reading “White Evangelicals, White Fundamentalists, and White Baptists: White Americans Don’t Need the Gospel or Compassion, especially not the affluent or middle class”

The Types of Christian Singles Who Annoy Me

The Types of Christian Singles Who Annoy Me: The Perpetually Sunny Happy Christian Single Who Is Totally Thrilled With Singleness; The Condescending Single Who Brays “Jesus is all you need, your earthly happiness doesn’t matter”; or the Single Who Is Too Spiritual About Singleness

I. The Perpetually Sunny Happy Christian Single Who Is Totally Thrilled With Singleness And Doesn’t Understand Why You Can’t Be Too

To clarify something: there are times when I feel relieved about being single, and there are other times it bothers me. I’m not wholly on one side of the fence or the other.

I was just saying (Link): in a post yesterday I get very pissed off and annoyed over these sunny attitude, Rose-colored- glasses- wearing unmarried women (sometimes men, but it’s normally a woman) who go on and on in their editorials for Christian singles about how they are golly gee whiz happy-happy to be single, they love living for just Jesus by golly!, and they say they cannot wrap their heads around singles who think that singlehood sometimes sucks. They think everyone should be as happy-happy with singleness as they are.

The fact is, some of us are not always happy with singleness 100% of the time, and your constant sunniness about it is unrealistic, irritating, doesn’t acknowledge the pain some of us go through at times, and by being so dang chipper about singleness, you’re sort of denying how most churches and denominations ignore or belittle singles.

II. The Super Spiritual Christian Single Who Likes to Say Over and Over: “Jesus and My Bible is All I Need and To Want Anything Else is Inappropriate, Especially In Church” (Single Who Is Too Spiritual About Singleness)

These are usually the ones who pipe up in blog comments in articles for singles who say church is for worship of the Lord and Bible devotions only, that’s all THEY want when they go to a church, they say they are deeply offended when “Brother Hank” or “Sister Sally” tries to play match- maker for them.

And, they say, singles should not be using church to find a mate, because that’s turning church into a “meat market.” And remember, according to them, church is for worship and Bible reading and study only, nothing else.

If you are the kind of single who wants to view church as a Bible study only, fine for you, but don’t sit there and lecture myself and Christian singles that it’s wrong for another Christian person to use church to meet a mate.

There are other reasons for the creation of the church besides worship, Bible reading, the Great Commission, and helping African orphans.

Continue reading “The Types of Christian Singles Who Annoy Me”