This week a firestorm erupted on the Facebook page of an up-and-coming Christian comedienne who also happens to be a Black woman.
Here’s The Back Story:
She posted the photo of a Pastor and his spouse taking part in special services the church had given to honor the couple (in the Black church, this type of special service is commonly known as “the Pastor & Wife’s Appreciation” or “the Pastor & Wife’s Anniversary.” This service commemorates each year of service by the couple, and is an annual tradition on the church’s calendar of services).
(Just as a FYI, there is also another service in a similar vein that is referred to as “the Church Appreciation” or “the Church Anniversary”).
While I’m at it, let me also inform the uninformed that in many Black churches, the Pastor’s wife is often referred to as “the First Lady.” (Yes, the same term given to the wife of the President of the United States. I’m not throwing any shade on the term, I’m just filling out The Back story).
Any who, Pastoral appreciations are standard fare for most Black churches. Except for one small detail.
The Pastor’s “wife” (spouse) in the photo was another man.
Raised herself as a “P.K.” or “Preacher’s Kid,” the Comedienne was tickled pink by the fact that the spouse of the Pastor in the photo was referred to as “The First Gentleman.”
She’d never heard of the term. She remembered how the term “First Lady” had applied to her Mother, so she thought the whole thing was hilarious. Hence the reason she posted the photo.
Whelp, before waiting to see what she would say about the photo or read her reason for posting it, the “Christians” came out in full force to comment on what they saw in the photo.
When I say “a firestorm erupted,” I’m not exaggerating: She received over 80 comments in about 5 – 6 minutes.
And what kinds of comments did the “Christians” post, you may ask?
Did the Christians post comments that reflected the love of Christ – comments that reflected a concern for the souls of the two men? Did the comments express thoughts of prayer, or even of reflection?
Did the comments demonstrate loving kindness – the same loving kindness God used when He
supposedly drew them?
I dare say that you don’t even have to ask those questions – you probably already know the answers.
And that, my friends, is the sad part: You probably already know that the vast majority of the “Christians” who posted the comments evidently could not spell “Love,” much less show Love.
May I tell you that I’m. sick. and. tired. of. “Christians” who. only. seem. to. be. able. to. tell. you. who. and. what. they. HATE. instead. of. who. and. what. they. LOVE?
May I tell you that I’m disgusted by their bigotry and intolerance? May I tell you that I’m sickened and dismayed at the way they throw away – and trample under their feet – prime opportunities to be the light and love they sing and testify to each other about on Sunday mornings?
When I wasn’t busy being disgusted and angry, I was interested to see that the very people these “Christians” were trying to point the finger at and condemn (yeah, gays and lesbians – the people “Christians” seem to love to hate) – these very individuals were able to point out passages of scripture – in the same Bible these “Christians” say they read – and remind them of what the Word says about Love.
You know – LOVE – what that same Bible (in 1 John 4:8) says GOD is.
And for all of you who stand poised to swoop down on me and quote scriptures about homosexuality, don’t bother. I’m well versed in the Bible, and I don’t need you to tell me what it says on the subject of homosexuality.
What I DO need you to do – for starters – is look up all the verses that describe YOUR spiritual state.
Go ahead and start with the Gospels, somewhere around Matthew 7:3 (where the words are in red) where Jesus asks, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”
And before you try to tell me that homosexuality is not “sawdust,” go ahead and read 1 John 5:17. (I’ll save you the time and tell you what it says: “All unrighteousness is sin.”)
ALL. unrighteousness. is. sin.
As in, the unrighteous, ungodly, and wicked things YOU do.
Guess what? Those things YOU do that oppose the word of God – those things are SIN.
(And, mind you, “unrighteousness” includes talking to people as if they were trash. Or talking about them as if they were trash. Or neglecting to remember that those persons you despise are made in the image and likeness of God –
just like you are).
How ’bout you remember that Christ died for the ungodly – and “THEY” are included in that number (
just as YOU are)?
The “Christians” who that night tried to pummel gays and lesbians with comments of “You’re going to hell” and “You’re an abomination” need to consider a little incident that is found in John 8:
The “teachers of the law and the Pharisees” (you know; people who prided themselves on how well THEY kept the law – yes; kinda like many of these modern-day “Christians”) brought to Jesus a woman who had been caught in. the. very. act. of. ADULTERY.
(Chile, YES! CAUGHT IN THE ACT of CHEATING on her husband!)
*Clutching my pearls*
“They made her stand before the group” (
yep; sounds like some “Christians” I know) and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?”
(See how they thumped the Bible at Jesus? They told Him what the law of Moses said to do to people who engaged in such sinful and dastardly behavior – as if He didn’t already know).
So, What Did Jesus Do?
But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”
So, you wanna know “What Would Jesus Do?”
Wanna know what I believe He’s doing to these “Christians” who show contempt instead of concern, a lack of love instead of loving kindness?
I’ll tell you.
He’d say, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone.”
And so will I.
Join in the Fray: Do you have a stone to throw?
I’m blogging every day in the month of April in Blogher’s NaBloPoMo Challenge. Thanks for reading, and feel free to comment!
Copyright © 2013 Michelle Matthews Calloway, ASwirlGirl™, The Swirl World™, All rights reserved.
The Anti-Swirl says
*ponders the relationship between eggs and chickens*
There is one thing I agree with you: the use of quotation marks, in this case, around the word “Christians.”
If there is any deep-rooted problem in the Body of Christ, it is with the many hangers-on, wannabees, and other assorted flotsam and jetsam that has attached itself to the Old Ship of Zion.
(Did I just mix my metaphors? Silly me; a result of my attempt @ brevity, shan’t happen again.)
I pose a question: What do we as true believers do about the problem of the world’s perception of us? Is it really a problem to be solved, or is it simply the cost of doing Kingdom business?
Yeah, yeah, I know, we “pray.” But what do we DO, after the “Amen?”
*awaits response from silent readership of ASG*
FYI: A mind is a terrible thing to waste….
*Wondering what that dissertation you typed has to do with the price of eggs*
Dear Sir, I DID say in the post that I did not want or need a lesson or a bunch of scriptures on what the Bible has to say about homosexuality. I know what it says. That is not the issue at hand. The ISSUE is the judgmental, hypocritical, LOVE-LESS finger pointing of “Christians” who, if they are honest, don’t have a stone to throw at ANYONE.
FYI: Reading is fundamental.
Oh, if people could just show the SAME amount of passion for ALL unrighteousness – starting with the unrighteousness FIRST IN THEMSELVES, and then, if they feel they must attack sin, the sin that is in their heterosexual “brethren” – murder, adultery, fornication, lying, stealing, hatred, bigotry, gossip, gluttony (to name a FEW) – as they do for THIS particular sin. My, what a wonderful world it would be!
Thanks for commenting and reading!
Eugenia, thanks so much! I was thinking the same way – a lot of the “Christians” I meet today leave such a bad taste in my mouth that I’m glad I was one when I met them, because they’d surely make me go in another direction. It’s hard to see Christ because so many represent Him so poorly. SMH
The Anti-Swirl says
So, what is? is there to be found in the life of Jesus any place where He had a reaction/response to what He perceived as a problem in the Temple?
(I see you! Put that rock down!)
John 2:14-16, which says,
“And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: 15 And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; 16 And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise.”
Quite a different image we have here of Jesus, eh? Instead of the touchy-feely, let’s-love-and-accept-everybody-without-EVER-confronting-their-sinful-behavior Jesus that we prefer to present to the world, not realizing that it’s actually the image of Jesus that the world demands we accept.
WWJD, if He was invited to speak @ The Vision Church???
I’d drop a dollar in THAT offering plate, just to see the show….
BTW, if I didn’t say it before, Excellent blog! Rep them Rubits, my sister!!!
The Anti-Swirl says
We all agree on one thing: Hypocrisy is a baaaaaad thing!
Now, having said that, let’s look @ the real issue(s) here. A comedienne posted a picture of a “bishop” and his “partner” (I will be SO glad when the LGBT community comes up with an ORIGINAL word for their version of marriage–I HATE it when the English language is hijacked, merely for convenience’s sake. But that’s just me.), and in the space of a few minutes, received 80 comments that vociferously condemned the practice of homosexuality, and its place in modern church leadership.
Heavens to Mercatroid! (If you get that reference, you’re showing your age.)
Now, to be honest, I do get the issue of hatred and hypocrisy in the Church. Really, I do. But…
Let us consider something: is the “cast the first stone” reference used here the proper one?
Let me tell you why, before you all begin gathering stones to throw @ me.
In that particular portion of the Gospels (John 8:3-11), the Pharisees brought to Jesus a woman who was caught in adultery, not so the woman’s actions could be properly judged, but so that they might have a reason to accuse Jesus of breaking the law of Moses. Which leads us to Point #1–
The Pharisees had already been described by John the Baptist as “generation of vipers” (Mt. 3:7), and by Jesus as “generation of vipers” (Mt. 12-34; 23:33), “hypocrites” (Mt. 15, 16, 22, and quite a few others), so they were NOT representatives of true Judaism, and….
Point #2–The woman who was caught in adultery was not seeking to be a leader of the synagogue. She was not attempting to change ANY of the traditional teachings/doctrine of the Jewish faith. She was NOT seeking “acceptance,” “understanding,” or “love.”
So, what do we have? We have a society that demands that the lines defining “unconditional love” be blurred to include “unconditional acceptance of sin.” The Apostle Paul understood the danger of this when he said,
“For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.
Acts 20:29-30 (KJV)
An openly homosexual male (“gay” was the first successful hijacking of the English language. There is absolutely NOTHING “gay” about the practice of homosexuality, or the consequences of its practice.), calling himself “Bishop,” and parading his “partner” as an viable alternative to a First Lady is, IMNSHO, a perfect description of what Paul was talking about….
to be continued…..
Don, so true – and thanks so much for commenting and sharing!
They will say in their day, “Lord, Lord”. And i will tell them, “I never knew you. Get the hence.” Not an exact quote, but I really don’t feel like looking it up right now. I’m as disgusted as the next person at the utter hypocracy of these people. But I learned long ago that you can’t argue with extreme self-righteousness. They BELIEVE they’re right, and no amount of arguing or proving, even from their own Bible, is going to change that belief.
Oh, and Michelle, excellent piece! I’m sharing this page!
I love the rant, that’s awesome. You know Jesus always told the truth but he told it with love. I always wonder if ppl who profess to be saved and Jesus know anything about Jesus, I mean really know who he was. Many Christians are some of the meaness most miserable in my life. If I wasn’t already a Christians and I saw most Christians it would not tempt me to be one. But I’m always glad I have a relationship with God and not with religion. Again, good rant.
Then I better fit myself for a new black suit and a pair of white gloves, ’cause my friend is headed for a brand new home.
(Of course I’m going to post an Anti-Rant, to counteract this train wreck of a squishy-squashy, feel-good, let’s-trot-out-the-jug-of compassion, Oprah-like blatherskite. But, I’ve heard from you, Swirl-churl; let’s hear from your disciples!)
((annoying the bejesus out of my sister is also part of my pay grade, fyi))
I think He would tell you to do something about your recurring acne problem, and continue to love and pray for your friend with the mole.
P. S. The way your friend’s mole looks to you is how your acne looks to him and everybody else. IJS
Smooches! Thanks for reading and commenting. 🙂
The Anti-Swirl says
(Of course, I’m going to be a dissonant voice in this chorus of “Kumbaya.” I’m the Anti-Swirl; it’s my mission in life to move people away from the fashionable groupthink, and make them consider an alternate POV. It’s my job. It’s what I do.)
I have a friend, a lifelong friend, whom I love dearly. Last year, I noticed a mole on his left cheek that hadn’t been there before. I said nothing, because he owns a mirror, and was probably aware of the new mole. I didn’t want to embarrass him, so, I said nothing, but merely waited to see what, if anything, he would do with this mole on his heretofore unblemished skin.
Six months ago, I ran into my friend, and, to my dismay, the mole had grown to the size of a quarter. I didn’t want to appear unkind or bigoted, so, once again, I said nothing. After all, I’m sure I have had moles on my skin before, not to mention a reoccurring acne problem that I was well aware of; this disqualified me from mentioning my friends condition to him. Besides, it’s just plain impolite to draw attention to what I believe are minor faults, and my friend was a grown man who knew fully well the dangers of ignoring changes of pigment on the skin. It was NOT my place to urge him to see a doctor.
Today, I saw my friend, and was horrified to see that the mole had covered his face, and had spread to his neck. He said, with no small sense of pride, “Everybody tells me about my mole, and, while some people try to criticize me about it, my friends tell me that it’s the latest fashion craze, and I should feature it prominently in my wardrobe. I’ve joined the Mole Society, and I now have many new friends who have similar moles, and support my decision not to have it excised, or even checked by a dermatologist. But, you’ve been a lifelong friend, so I respect and value your opinion. What do YOU think?”
Hmmmmmm…….what do I think, indeed?
What should I say? After all, I have blemishes, too.
More importantly, what should I DO?
AMEN! Thanks for commenting.
Thanks, MrsGlam! Enough is enough, already. I’m tired of the bigotry and self righteousness. Thanks for commenting.
Chef Bob, thanks so much. I look forward to hearing your story.
Clap . . .clap . . .ClAp!!! I LOVE IT!!! I am so over mean-spirited “Christians”. I can’t understand how they can name the name of Christ and have no compassion. You nailed it on tbe issue of Love. If we can let our hearts abound with love, God will draw them. Let’s spread this message to all christians.
Whew chile, you said a mouthful! I am LOVING this post!
Chef bob says
Michelle, I got your back. One day soon, I’ll call you and tell you my story about church. It’s a doozie.