How to Break the Cookie-Cutter, Carbon Copy Christian Cycle
Mechanized. An assemblage of parts constructing carbon copy images of the same person over and over again. While Ford was the progenitor of the assembly line, Christian culture has become it’s own master of mass production.
The assembly line creating mass quantities of goods has one irrefutable quality—unless faulty, the product is exactly the same. Carbon copies of each other is the goal. The “different” or “inconsistent” item from the rest of the bunch is tossed out—faulty and not meeting the specifications of those making these consumer goods.
And while this principle and product of Capitalism produces wealth, such activities are destructive and detrimental in the Church.
Churches, wittingly or otherwise, often taken on the role of mass producing assembly lines. Each Christian is instructed in the same way, given the same set of rules, a particular sanitized clothing lines of music selection, and specific speculative interpretations of scripture which they must abide by. Churches such as these are not interested in creating unique Christians but mass produced carbon copies of each other. Each Christian must dress a certain way (or perhaps, NOT in certain styles) think, act, and talk in designed and “approved” fashions. To do otherwise could get you into some major trouble. One might be branded “faulty” from the prototype — (Supposedly Jesus wore hemp sandals, parted his hair, didn’t wear shorts to church, and avoided secular music like the plague.)
Such was the setting in which I grew-up. Imagine, if you will, a high-school lad enamored with the punk scene sporting a studded belt, and dyed black spiked hair. Countless times church members would approach my parents and warn them of my impending doom and corruption.
The truth is, the body of Christ, the mystical bride whom all Christians compose (not just the Protestants with whom you agree) is far more diverse. To this effect, Paul the Apostles warned the Church of Corinth that the body should not be composed of nay one part but many equal diverse parts. They were not all to be carbon copies of each other. And so neither should we.
Some have talents that others do not. May all our talents and gifts be used for Christ—not neglected because it’s not “Christian” enough.
Some have interests, fashion, an appearance, and personality which swing wide the doors of communities which are closed for others.
And since the body of Christ is so diverse, as it should be, you and I should never feel the compulsion to confirm to any particular pastor or church’s vision of what a cookie-cutter Christian should look like.
There is only one to whom we should conform our lives, minds, behaviors, and desires—Jesus Christ.
Be Christ-like as you live out who God made you to be.
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