Take chances. Abandon all the rules. Ditch the recipe. Color outside the lines.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Remembering the Rebel

Playing the Rebel
 As many of you know, my best friend and I have stated this massive project of making a documentary about Christianity called “Color Outside the Lines.”  The basic goal is discovering why people in our world today no longer want anything to do with church but have no problem with the person of Jesus Christ.  Today we conducted a social experiment where we went to a small Independent Baptist Church out in the middle of nowhere playing characters that one wouldn’t normally see in church.  She played an unwed pregnant teen and I was the insubordinate rebel without a cause.  The rebel role wasn’t a difficult one for me to play because not too long ago the person that walked into that church today was exactly who I was.  Angry at the world, my icy stares and baggy clothes tried desperately to hide the pain underneath as I held my breath that no one could see the weakness of my tattered heart.  Many times I found myself wandering into college Bible studies, youth led church services, or weekly chapels reeking of cigar smoke and puffy eyes from consecutive nights without sleep.  I hid my pain with snide comments and cynical humor trying my best to convince everyone around me that I really didn’t care what they had to say.  I walked into that church today pretending to be something I am glad I have escaped from.  My therapist in college used to say that the hardest part of moving forward is facing your past.  I understand more today than I ever had what she meant by that.  Today I faced a part of my past that I hadn’t really dealt with yet.  It is easy for me to look back on the depth of my brokenness and see how the religious truly scarred my heart; the hard part about today is that I had to look back and see that my rebellion was just as wrong as their rejection.   I have said many times, my response to pain is my fault not those who caused the hurting.  My choices to drink, smoke, fight, argue, hate, and respond with insolence are my own and not the responsibility of those that they are in response to.  I am thankful that grace came in and saved me not only from my oppressors but also from myself.  Today was big for me.  I proved to myself that I’m not that person anymore, hiding behind rebellion and cheering for anarchy, but that there is truly joy inside my heart that frees me from having to be hard to keep from getting hurt.  I shed another layer of skin today as I become the new me made by grace and loved by God.  I boast in God’s great love for me because I truly have never felt more free.

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