October 6, 2008

A challenge to the "conservative Christian evangelical" church

How did your movement become synonymous with the political right? Were you hijacked, or have you simply proven what many have suspected all long?

Have you become the party of non-thinking, mean-spirited, single-minded self-lovers who lack concern for anyone unlike themselves?

Have you failed to balance your concern over the unborn with the need for safe foster homes for children who were born but not wanted? How many foster parents are in your local congregations?

Have you neglected the homeless because somewhere in the back of your mind you think "those people" got what they deserved by living irresponsibly or carelessly? How many food banks and clothing closets house your contributions?

Have you refused to confront your own racism and sexism because you found Bible verses that seem to support slavery and a subordinate position for women? Is 11:00 am on Sunday the most segregated hour in your life?

Have you ignored the increasing levels of poverty and hunger in the U.S. and the world because you're convinced God will always feed the righteous and leave the unrighteous out in the cold?

Do your brows furrow when someone mentions HIV/AIDS?

How did you decide to ignore domestic violence, child sexual abuse, and sexual assault in your communities, but insist on removing from your bookstores magazines picturing women pastors on the cover?

Do you silently reassure yourself of God's favor when you smugly say "There but for the grace of God go I" when you see or hear of someone who has fallen away from the "straight and narrow"? Why isn't this person's experience an opportunity to demonstrate and prove the love of God? Are the unfortunate less graced than the fortunate? Who says so?

Is civil disobedience OK when you want to challenge IRS regulations regarding political endorsements from the pulpit, but not OK for everyone else?

What elements of our society do you wish to "conserve"? Who would benefit and who would suffer from such conservation? Or has it all come to mean only this: "I have an advantage somewhere in all of this, and I refuse to give it up?"


Conservative Black Woman said...

This is a very thought provoking post as a self-described conservative Christian I was thinking just today about the imbalance within this "movement" if you will.

Christians (myself included) have uncritically adopted either one side or another which on a personal level is shameful. But politically it's unavoidable unless you are a policy maker.

I mean as a christian you should be concerned about the rights of the unborn,the sanctity of marriage and the family as well as the homeless and less-fortunate. But you have to pick a side on a political level because the right favors the rights of the unborn and the left tows the line for the less fortunate (at least that's the story they are sticking too.

deborah evans said...

Thanks for your comment.

You make some good points and it is difficult to decide where to come down on this in terms of political affiliations. My theology would generally be considered very conservative by many people, but socially/politically many people would put me on the far left.

For example: on the abortion issue I have no problem with peaceful demonstrations outside of clinics. For me, the other side (which must stay connected) would be an equally motivated drive by churches and right-to-life groups to recruit and get licensed hundreds of new local foster care families each year. The lives of the nine or twelve year old children are just as sacred as the lives of the unborn. Don't doubt that lives are being destroyed (in some cases literally) because too many children don't have safe homes.