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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Normally I Wouldn't Touch This

But for some reason it's been on my mind a ton lately. Not just for "some" reason, there's a very specific reason actually. It's not something I like talking about but I'm going to.
Here goes, why are some people so "religion" or denomination oriented? Personally, in my humble little opinion Christianity is Christianity, this is no right or wrong denomination. Either you believe in God or you don't. All Christians believe in the same God, right? So why does what denomination you are matter so much to some people?

I was a "cradle" Catholic, if you aren't familiar with that term it basically means you were born into the Catholic faith & that's how you were raised, while my husband was raised in a Baptist church. My dad's family was also Baptist so I was exposed to both growing up. For a while after we were married, we went to the Catholic church, we planned on raising our children in the Catholic church, even baptized them in the church. However, after much thoughtful prayrer both together & individually, Brent & I decided that we were not in the right place for our little family. The Catholic church is a good church, it just wasn't the right fit for our little family.

Naturally, some of my family members were not thrilled with our decision to find a different church. There were a lot of hurtful things that were sait that we just had to learn to just ignor & let roll off our backs. Eventually, after many conversations with each other as well as god we knew we were doing the right thing.

We began attending a church in Picayune, which is about 20-30 minutes from our house. The first week or two we kept the kids with us in the sanctuary during services but quickly realized that kids will be kids. They were well behaved but we weren't able to completely concentrate on the message. We finally decided to let them go to the nursery. Avery would be in an age appropriate class here they would have a bible lesson, eat snacks, & then have playtime. Since I stay home with them they don't interact with other kids a lot so I thought it would be good for them. Peyton would also be in a class that was suitable for his age but since he was so young, he would just get to play & interact with other kids.

The first time we dropped them off, it was hard but we did okay. I was called to the nursery once during service for Peyton but we were able to manage to get him calmed down & back to playing. When we picked them up Avery was thrilled but Peyton was not a happy camper. He's such a mama's boy & has never really been away from me other than staying with family. I guess I should say I've never left him with strangers before, it's always been familiar faces. I prayed that we had made the right decision for our children's sake.

The following week it was the same thing, Avery was a little clingy but went peacefully. Peyton cried but adjusted quickly. We were able to make it through service without being summoned to the nursery. When we picked them up Avery had drawn a picture that she was excited to show off. Peyton didn't fuss until they opened the door & he realized that I should be there. We got in our car to leave & after Avery finished telling us how they ate goldfish & drank water & slid down the slide in her class that morning, the backseat got very quiet. I thought they had fallen asleep until about 5 minutes later when we all of a sudden hear a sweet little voice singing "Jesus Loves Me". Brent & I both looked at each other & smiled. Of course she had heard the song before, I sing it to her & Peyton all the time, but she had never even attempted to sing it before. We waited for her to finish & Brent asked where she learned that & she responded "at my church Daddy'. I was so proud & at that moment I knew we made the right choice.

Even though we were in the right place with our family of four, that didn't stop the hurtful comments. So, I started praying about it constantly, of course...what else am I going to do other than ignore it obviously. My dad & his girlfriend came into town for Peyton's birthday at the beginning of June & this is when I got my answer. Very unexpectedly, but it was pretty much laid in my lap. One night, we brought the kids to their hotel to swim & while we were walking through the lobby I saw a pamphlet on the table that caught my attention. It was titled Christianity Without Denominations so I picked it up. It's a very interesting little pamphlet that came from a group called The Sword and Staff from North Carolina. I am going to type out some of it because it's a very interesting & good explanation about denominations.

"To what denomination did Peter, James, John, the 300 on Pentecost, Corinthians, and the Philippian jailer belong? The answer, they belonged to none. They were simply members of the body of Christ, which is the Lord's church, yet they were not members of any denomination as we know them today."

"Why call ourselves by denominational names? We believe in Christ. He is our creed, and we do what he says. Consequently the New Testament is our only rule of faith and doctine (no man-made creeds)."

"Most people will say that they actually believe that this is the way it should be, but getting them to implement it is another thing. Really, it is not a matter of opinion or optional. Christ purchased the church with his own blood. The church belongs to him."

Ephesians 4:4-6 "There is one body and one Spirit - just as you were called to one hope when you were called - one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all." NIV

So, why are denominations so important in today's society? I'm so over it...

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