Sunday, August 15, 2010
Dating Jesus (final thoughts)
Campbell writes about her reaction to the story of the Capernaum woman in Luke 8:43-48 who had been bleeding for 12 years. She spent everything she had in futile attempts to get well, and when she heard of Jesus she just wanted to touch the hem of his garment.
That is what blindsided me- she felt unworthy, but her faith healed her. That, and the notion that there's a whole army of us, regardless of our orientation, who have been made to understand that we don't fit in and aren't entirely wanted, that we are somehow unclean, unworthy. The performance artist knew that in the eyes of some, his orientation placed him outside God's love, especially according to the believers with whom he once worshiped. And I knew that as a woman, my church did not think me quite worthy of the entirety of God's saving grace. Don't tell me that God had in mind for me a special role. We all know there's no such thing as separate but equal. I either get to walk straight to the throne of God or I don't. There is no halfway, no compromise.
But her faith healed her....
Sometimes I wonder just what it will take to help me really heal that feeling of unworthiness I have buried in the pit of my heart. Campbell goes on to say that she realized that all her life she had been courting the wrong Jesus. She writes that:
The real Jesus wouldn't have worried if I spoke out in Sunday school. He might have expected it- demanded it, even... The real Jesus wouldn't have loved me any less because of my gender. He most likely would have shown me a kind understanding I wouldn't have received from many other people in my life. He would have been ok with the quirks and the really mean parts of me I try to ignore... The real Jesus would have loved me for me.
That's just it- the REAL Jesus loves me for me. The devil keeps telling me that I'm not good enough, that I'll never be good enough. It seems that my daily struggle is to let go of my futile efforts to be good enough for everyone else and cling to the real Jesus, who I am already good enough for.
If nothing else, I find that this book made me more and more committed to making sure that I do my part to help girls growing up in the church don't feel unworthy because of their gender. I hope you'll read the book no matter how you feel about gender and the church.