Sunday, October 16, 2011

Jesus the Magic Pill - Reposted

Rereading one of my old blogs, I stumbled across this post that I wrote a few years ago.  Just wanted to repost it cuse I think it's an interesting idea to ponder. 

Jesus - The Magic Pill
I think the church has sadly misinformed society by marketing Jesus as a magic pill that, if swallowed, will make you complete. Although I do believe there are transforming powers that take place, I don't believe that 'wholeness' happens this side of heaven.

Sidnote, before I begin... I'm just journaling here and I'm fully aware that there are many people whose lives represent a very good picture of what Christ was aiming for in us. This is more a venting/discovery process for me to write. Continuing on....

Embracing that completeness (in this lifetime) is a falsehood would take a lot of the pressure off believers. Somewhere down the line Christ followers developed the message that it was thier job to sell Jesus. (I beg to argue that Jesus is very capable of selling himself.) In order to push this agenda many people have adopted to finding the greatest marketing tool they can think of: themselves. Making ourselves images of the perfect restored person who dances during the rainstorms and sends God facebook status thank you notes. These days, I think the advertisement has also evolved into being 'real'. I'm normal. I'm a sinner. I'm relatable. I'm relevant. 'Hey, look, I'm just like you. Admit it and swallow the pill with me." Regardless the bottle that the message is packaged in, I think the message stays the same. We make Jesus out to be the answer that solves the question NOW. And after living a life with him for over 20 years I just can't help but ask, is he really answering this question now? Am I really complete? ...because if this is complete, then there's a whole other side of problems with this world.

Yes, I believe he is the answer and that my life is undoubtably sweetier than before. But I'm finding that it's OK to admit that the 'completeness' won't be meeting me here during this lifetime. There is a sanctification process that takes place on earth, I think Lauren Winters terms it perfectly when she describes this earthly life as a continuous process of 'becoming a christian'. We can embrace that one day when we meet our creator face to face we will be restored, we will be complete, he will be enough. In the meantime though, I don't want to be considered sacrilegious by saying, 

actually He's not enough.

Yes, he's in control. Yes I believe he's guiding me through life and catching me when I stumble down the hill of morality. However, he's just not enough for me yet. Jesus has entered my life, but he entered my life to take me on a journey, not to answer all the questions the second I let him in.

I still have fantastic days, I still have crappy days, I still have anxiety about life change, I still struggle with my inadequacy, I still have questions!

He's good, He's very good. He's saved me for the life of eternity after my human existence ceases. He's saved me now, and for a time when complete restoration will fill my heavenly bones and usher me into complete fulfillment. In the meantime, I don't want to be a rose garden of empty promises to people who are seeking for the answer now. If we were more honest about what to expect maybe it would be a more attractive/less threatening thing to investigate and find.

I trust his message, I just don't trust ours.



  1. I like your thoughtfulness and willingness to be confused and lost while seeking. I was reminded of an autobiography I read by Fredrick Douglas. He talks about being a slave and not really being very discontent. Then, he learns how to read and begins to realize all the freedoms that he is not allowed to enjoy. As he realizes the reality of his slavery, then he becomes discontent and fights and strives for his freedom. Stay with me here, but could it be that if we were never told that we were not made for this world? Or if we were never told that we were sinners and incomplete with out Jesus, would we be discontent? To put it strait forward: the idea that we are missing something is what makes us feel that we are missing something. If instead we were told when something bad or disappointing happened, this is how life is, it was never meant to be more than this, just do your best, find ways to enjoy life. That's it. I wonder if we would feel better and less discontent if that was the message. Or, would we feel discontent and then hopeless because there's nothing like paradise waiting for us at the end of a life of struggle?

  2. Rich, I always enjoy trading our ideas on this because I know how much we respect each others opinions. I don't know that I would term myself as 'lost while seeking'. For me, I've landed on the belief that life is not about "finding" anything, I think life takes us where we need it to, and God is standing next to us being faithful in who he is the whole time. I don't feel it my job or my place to sell or take jesus anywhere. I stand strong in believing that there is a God who is encountering every single one of his humanly creations since the moment they were born to the moment they are laid in the grave and restored to completeness. I resound with you that we'be been taught this idea of need, but I feel that the teaching has derived from an ultimate longing that we all feel. A longing to be connected to something, something outside of ourselves yet completely within ourselves (if that makes sense.) Sadly I do think humans fail a lot trying to 'teach' and 'control' the definition of what that longing is. However, I don't think our failed attempt at explaining makes the longing any less valid. Thoughts?

  3. Yes, I think I could have thought of a better phrase than "lost while seeking." You're right, a failed explanation does not negate the existence of the thing if fails to explain. But I wasn't really thinking of the style of the message, but the message itself. I don't deny the existence of the longing, it is most certainly there and I can't connect with the person who doesn't feel it. I like what you say, that life is all about the longing. It's defining. The real question is how we interpret the longing and thereby how we attempt to fill it.