For the past month, my pastor decided to have a panel discussion of topics that the church tends to avoid mentioning in service due to many people having good or bad opinions about it. Many churchgoers do not always get the opportunity to see their pastor discuss issues that they might have experienced in their own life, due to there being a church code where certain topics will never get discussed in the church due to board members or maybe the pastor knows his or her congregation will not really be accepting to hearing the word preached in a different way. The panel discussion that was held today in church really gave me a new perspective on church and gave me the sense that many spiritual leaders are not incorporating in their sermons, which is honesty.
Being a Christian to the outside world may be viewed as a way of life where everyone and everything has to be perfect. A Christian is held more accountable for the actions they choose to make because there are so many people waiting for them to mess up so that they can have something to gossip about. Christians fall short of the glory of God just like everyone else. Sometimes just going to church you will not always get to hear your pastor go into depth about topics such as drugs, alcohol, tattoos, gambling, money, and even sex because there has been a code where it seems as though pastors can only discuss certain topics without losing people in their congregation. A pastor can deliver a sermon without coming off being judgmental to issues plaguing our society. Not everyone will see certain aspects of life as being a sin because maybe their standards they have set for themselves allow them make excuses for them to continue living in a way that makes them a lukewarm Christian.
I was really surprised about the feedback that the congregation was giving the pastor and other individuals who were selected to participate in the panel discussion. Many people can be very passionate about certain issues because they have struggled with participating in a sinful activity that has made them believe it is acceptable to do on a regular basis. Every individual has different convictions about what they will not incorporate in their spiritual walk with God. People might turn their nose up at others who live a controversial lifestyle, but it does not mean that a person is incapable of receiving God’s love.
Some people will literally base their spiritual walk with God on the choices other Christians choose to participate in on a daily basis. Basing your spiritual walk on the actions another person chooses to make will not allow you to have salvation from God. 95% of the time, human beings are going to sin whether intentionally or by mistake, it is going to happen. You cannot be a Christian and then get upset when you encounter others who do not walk and act in the same manner as you do. Everyone is different. God handles each and every one of us in his own unique way. I understand that it might be hypocritical for a so-called Christian to live in a worldly manner, but God will soon deal with that person on his own time and does not need your help to verify if a particular needs to change right at this moment.
As Christians it can be so easily for us to want others to do the same things as we do, but everyone might not be discipline in an area in life that you are strong in. Every individual has weaknesses and people need to understand that it takes time for someone to realize that their wrongdoing is keeping them from have a bountiful spiritual walk with God. Maybe some spiritual leaders intentionally avoid talking about controversial topics within their church because maybe they know that their congregation might not be fully ready to hear the truth. The truth will more than likely hurt a lot of people, but the truth does not have to come as being criticizing, but concerned and in love. Many people will avoid going to church because they feel as though the church is full of people who are judgmental. As a Christian we should not turn our backs away from anyone because we have had moments in our life we were ashamed of our own wrongdoing.
I do believe that controversial topics need to be discussed more in church because people need to understand how God can change your life in various areas you are struggling in. I know it might be hard to accept the fact that people might judge you for choosing to live in a worldly manner, but if you really want to change no negative comment or action someone makes against will not stop God from being in your life. Controversy needs to be addressed and the church needs to stop skirting around talking about certain issues because there are people who need to be able to heal, but how can they heal when they are not being given the full word of God while in church?