prayer from the cell: has been

prayer from the cell: has been July 31, 2011

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  • he’s there but they won’t let him speak…

  • I haven’t been in 30 years. Do you know that feeling? Where are we meant to go with this? Bad boys bad boys, what you gonnna do when they come for you? Fierce independence? Indifference?. Freedom? Rebellion? The indifference of time and place?

  • It’s been two years for me. I definitely know the feeling. By NOT going to a church service that is designed for consumer-oriented church-goers, I continue to detox my deep-seated issues (52 years worth)about not just attending a church, but about the institutionalized church culture in America. I continue to unveil how much of my own walk was colored by 20th century Western institutionalism- from how I read the Bible to how I engaged in my world. I don’t know if I’ll ever go to an Americanized church service again but what I can’t escape is how my personal engagement with God apart from a church is flourishing. How do I know? I am living more incarnationally and my heart lives with a divine tension between joy and grief. The joy is deep while the grief rests more on the surface. In the last two years I have found a deeper level of rest in being loved by God and yet a more intense grief and concern over the humanity that God loves. Being in the institutional bubble isoloated me from being in God’s presence- a presence I encounter when I’m engaged in the real lives of the humanity beyond the bubble.

  • Some great and open comments here from my fellow non church attenders.

    Many lovely folk don’t see the spiritual toxicity of most church stuff.

    The feeling outside is great – a sense of Divine acceptance and Presence without the subliminal guilt.

  • leanne mcginney

    Didn’t go for 15 years; went back about three years ago. It may have been a mistake; feel at odds with most of the congregation. The pastors are good, but not really honest about the Bible. I guess they fear it will all fall apart.

  • Sarah

    Yes, and it’s great.

  • Anne Kohut

    The feeling of freedom? Yes. And it is good. Do miss the ready made sense of community and shared vision sometimes. The price for mindless conformity is just too high!

  • Robin

    I have not been to church in 2 months and I find it freeing…but I miss my friends and the social aspect of it. That’s all though. What’s wrong with THAT picture??

  • ScholarSparrow

    Want a real challenge? Seek community outside of the church and off the internet. It’s rather interesting and it feels so much more genuine when one arrives.

  • Pat Pope

    No, but wish I did. I left my church in April and missed a few Sundays, but when my mother started asking me each week if I was going or had gone to church, I started visiting a few churches near my home. But it’s still been good to be able to roll out of bed and into a church just minutes from my home with no expectations or responsibilities. Some Sundays, depending on what service I go to, I watch CBS Sunday Morning and consider that my church for right now (HA!).

  • David

    me too…. been a year …. and ?? not missing it ….. WHEREVER 2 or 3 are gathered…. and yep … even via the internet 🙂 liked your previous comic ….

  • “The price for mindless conformity is just too high!”

    I, for the life of me, don’t know what churches you go to. I have never, ever felt the pressure to mind-less conformity, rather the diversity in unity is such a thrill. God only makes originals. It’s his favorite thing, being Creator and all.

    Most of all I would miss kneeling at the rail with my brothers and sisters and receiving God’s body and blood shed for our sins, mine and those next to me. It is the highest good, and the most tangible touch of the divine gifts. I want it. I want it. I want it. I love it. I love it. I love it.