Ten Things I Wish The Evangelical Church Knew About Me

Millennial notes on equity, social justice, and inclusion in the evangelical church

1. I feel most included in the delivery of church sermons when the referenced quotes don’t come from only white males and (occasionally) Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

2. I nod in agreement when the vision of America’s Founding Fathers is taught as one piece of a prophetic roadmap and not an infallible statement of where we are today in this country. The revolution of 1776 is yet incomplete.

3. I grow uncomfortable when church leaders elevate scripture’s cultural context above the principles of Jesus to justify one group’s priority position over another’s.  For instance, we are told that women can’t share God’s truth from the pulpit although a woman – Mary Magdalene – was the first forerunner of the message of the resurrected Christ.

4. It frustrates me when calls to prayer for our nation only surround the appointment of a Republican party representative or advancement of a conservative position.  I don’t recall many prayers going up for the Obama and Biden families or for health care access for citizens of this nation.

5. I am most confused when church members cast asides about certain sectors of society that they’ve never been in, interacted with, or influenced. Have you visited an inner-city? Have you mentored a millennial?

_t9quy5akkm-jazmin-quaynor.jpg6. I love worship. I do. Can we put some songs in rotation that will allow me to clap on the second and fourth beats?

7. I don’t fully understand current conflicts in the Middle East and the church’s priority position to support Israel. Some info-lessons would be nice.

8. I don’t believe that every ambitious woman is possessed by a Jezebel spirit.

9. I believe that small groups can be strengthened by equipping leaders to recognize signs of depression and loneliness.

10. I don’t think we’re ready to receive – i.e. minister to – the members of society we believe are part of the great harvest.  Are we ready to reveal the Father’s heart to former victims of sex trafficking? Can we deliver practical messages about revitalizing hope to men and women who were once suicidal? Do we have generous processes for moving people from poverty to prosperity? [One church body can’t do it all — so are we even connected to other bodies of believers who can fill in the gaps where we fall short?]

What are some of your moments of contemplation or consternation concerning your membership in today’s non-denominational (evangelical) church? Tell us in the comments below!

Throughout the year, I’ll be expounding on these thoughts – offering both concession and assertion arguments – to strengthen today’s church and my role within it.  Hint: To make things more “millennial friendly”: pay tribute to diversity and chisel us with God’s truth so that we can change the world!

_____

Post-edit: Look at what Johnny Enlow posted on January 20th!

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2 thoughts on “Ten Things I Wish The Evangelical Church Knew About Me

  1. I remember watching some big Southern Baptist meeting where members from churches all over the states got together and voted on various issues – one plea from a brother who was connected to the Palestinians begged the others to consider that their automatic and unquestioning support of Israel was permitting all sorts of woes that was being perpetrated on Palestinian Christians to go unchallenged. Ultimately, another brother stood up and said something like: “The Bible clearly says that anyone who blesses Israel is blessed by God.” So of course the Southern Baptists voted to support Israel. Perhaps they were more worried about securing God’s blessing on the states than they were worried about how God felt about the Palestinians. I guess that there’s this attitude of God’s chosen people can do no wrong and are exceptions; were this scenario playing out in certain parts of Ukraine and Russia we might have chosen differently.

  2. Thanks for your insight Jamie! I struggle with reconciling the notion of God’s chosen people with the New Testament narrative of adoption into God’s family (where the line between Jew and Gentile has been erased). I’m not saying my perspective of “we’re all equal” is correct. I really think the church can help us understand all this better.
    -Elise L.

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