Unchristian


Hi, dear readers! I’ve evidently become a casual blogger who only posts once a week! Aren’t you proud of me? 🙂

I intended this week’s post to be something completely different from what it’s about to become, but when I logged in, I saw a comment that I think needs attention. It was posted on the guest book, and I think I’m going to remove it, because it sets a really unfortunate tone for one of the few places on the blog that isn’t meant for deep debate. However, I want to give it the proper respect and attention. Here’s the comment:

December 27, 2011 at 4:30 am

Hi!

You seem to be posting very personal things about your family. This is very unchristian of you.

Have a blessed day

I’m going to be perfectly upfront about my thoughts on this comment, and then I’ll let you all have at me with every rebuke you can muster.

1. Let’s not criticize the person who wrote this. I don’t know who it was or why he/she wrote this comment, but responding with love is always the best choice. Also, it’s not about the commenter… it’s about the comment. The question is not whether the commenter is right or wrong. The question is: have I been unchristian in the way I write about family.

2. I honestly don’t know if it’s unchristian or not.

  • I don’t think the act of sharing personal things is necessarily unbiblical. The bible itself includes the most personal of moments in peoples’ lives, such as David’s sins and private prayers, so it doesn’t seem that there’s anything inherently wrong in sharing personal stories.

  • I struggle with seeing this as a dichotomy of secrecy vs. honesty, which probably isn’t fair. It’s probably fairer to discuss privacy vs. transparency. And let’s also consider that the privacy in question is partly my own and partly other peoples’.

  • There is a lot in the bible about making sure the things that come from our mouths are filled with godliness… out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. Also, with parents, honor your father and mother.

3. One of the things I’ve written most deeply about on this blog is vulnerability, and there are parts of who I am that it hurts to share with others, but I do it because I believe God wants me to be connected to the body. I want the body (both online and in real life) to see a true person in front of them rather than a pretense. Sometimes family comes up, because they’ve done much to shape the person I am. With family, as with all parts of who I am, iron can’t sharpen iron if it never comes into close contact. God can’t mend those broken pieces of my heart if I never give my heart into His hands and into the hands of other people. That’s why I share personal things.

So… what do you think? Have I been unchristian? Please, don’t just jump on my side because you like me and read my blog for some reason. Tell me what you really think. Most of you don’t know me or my family. A few of you do. A few of you are in my family. What do you think? All of you. Where’s the line between privacy and transparency… honesty and secrecy?

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17 thoughts on “Unchristian

  1. To me, to make a statement that it is unchristian to post personal things about family is unqualified. If you are posting comments that are derogatory or defamatory or that dishonor your parents…things that are opposite of what we read of in Scripture…OK, then that would be unchristian.

    I follow your blog and don’t remember ever seeing things of that nature.

    Now, as far as some of the things that you are willing to talk about (transparency) on your blog, I suppose if I were a blogger, I would NOT probably post such things…but that is not because they are unchristian, but because I don’t care to share super personal things with everyone. I reserve those types of conversations/comments for my closest of friends/allies.

    But hey, I AM family…so you already know that about me!

  2. I struggle all the time with things that I think could be good to share but involve crossing boundaries of respect or honor. In my opinion, you haven’t been unchristian, or even indiscreet. If the question was genuine, I would be interested in an elaboration of what the commenter thinks is unchristian about your sharing, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t genuine. Peace!

  3. I don’t know if the person who posted this is a Christian. I assume that he/she is because of the “Have a Blessed Day!” statement. This comment is based on the idea that he/she is a Christian.

    I don’t think that we (as Christians) should even use the term “unchristian.” I honestly don’t even know what “unchristian” means. Does “unchristian” mean that it violates God’s commandments? Does “unchristian” mean that sharing personal family information is sin? And if that is the case, this person should say, “Sharing personal family information is a violation of God’s law and is sinful.” But, I don’t think that a Christian could make such a radical comment about sharing personal information. So, he/she just says it is “unchristian.”

    What is unchristian about it? Do you think it’s not loving to share that personal family information? Do you think that it is not wise to put that out there? Do you think that it is judgemental? Then, say those things. But, don’t call it “unchristian.”

  4. Like Lori, it is really confusing to me what “unchristian” means. If Christian means Christ follower, and “un” negates the Christ follower part than I would have to disagree. Even if it was a sin (which I have no idea and would argue that none of us do because if the content or not is christian we have no idea what the depths of your heart is not to mention you might have no idea what the depths of your heart is because i believe that we commit sin without even realizing it) the gospel is about grace. Talking about family is not the one sin (or maybe the reader is believes that there are multiple) that separates you from Christ after Salvation, a free gift, was given. We ALL sin and fall short of the glory of God, that’s why he sent his son for us. Hmm…

    I also think the comment is incredibly judgmental, and I am judging that it is judgmental which is also a sin! yikes!

    Instead of accusing our brothers and sisters (if this person is in fact in the Body) let’s come along side each other and limp together along the Way (only by His grace).

    Hope this doesn’t sound like a rant…

  5. There seems to be so much animosity in the blogging world today! I too experienced attacks. I havent read any of your posts yet so im not sure what you have shared but if its personal then it can be used as a testimony and as a way of helping others. Too many people are focused on condemnation rather than love. You write what the Spirit moves you to write.

    • Reign of Faith – thanks for your comment. It makes me feel a little calmer about the situation. I guess I’m a young blogger and should probably just delete comments like this, but I didn’t want to ignore something that could have truth to it.

      Thank you.

  6. I wouldn’t say that you are being unchristian, I do the same thing, you are just someone who writes what you’ve been through and are working through. I see nothing wrong with what you’ve written and enjoy reading it. I feel like I get to know you a little better everytime I read it. Don’t let them get you down 🙂

  7. Oh snap son! I’m ’bout to break out some Bible versus on you all!

    John 7:24.

    Stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgement.

    I think the context of this verse is when people see Jesus teaching/healing on the Sabbath and they say he is breaking the law by doing work on the Sabbath. (A big no-no in Jewish law) He basically says what’s the big deal? I’m doing holy work on a day reserved for holy things.

    You may not be doing anything “holy” ser se but you are still doing something good. You’re just living your life. So what if you make this blog a real part of who you are? So what if anybody can see it? So what if you talk about family? So what if you’re honest?

    (By the way, I don’t recall ever you speaking about your family in a bad way, nor do I recall very much of your family popping up in conversation.)

    I would argue against what this person is saying by simply pointing out that a Christian living their life in the open is exactly what Christ called for us to do.

    I also believe there are verses that say Christians should rebuke other Christians in private. So… i guess their attempt at doing that privately didn’t work out too well?

    (I would love to write more on this topic but I’m running terribly late to somewhere. As a matter of fact, I read this, could have stopped and been there in time, but decided I had to comment and therefore make my friends rather upset.)

    (And if anybody could, feel free to correct my usage of the phrase ‘per se’. I have no idea what I’m doing with Latin phrases.)

    • D.A. Bangcroft – you are so cool… and I’m totally not just saying that because you defended me all chivalrously in your comment just then. You have this really nice way of being serious, casual, and hilarious at the same time. Thanks for making your friends rather upset. You’ve made up for it by making me smile.

  8. Daughter,
    I was surprised to read this comment at this particular time—-You haven’t written anything recently that has made me squirm. However, someone felt the need to defend our family and I’m thinking I should respond.
    As you know, there have been times in the past when I and other family members have felt sensitive about what you have written. I only share openly with a few people who are very close to me and I like to control my public image. In fact, I would like your bloggers to think that I was and am the perfect mother and that our family has never been dysfunctional in any way. When you write about things which were/are hurtful to you, I feel like I failed to take care of you and I hate that feeling. Even now, when I know that you are a wonderful, capable adult, I still want to “fix” things for you. It hurts me to know that you have been hurt or are currently hurting. Knowing the things I know now, I could have been a much better parent, but still not perfect. I, too, am “still growing”.
    I like reading your blog. I learn things there that you “forget” to tell me. I don’t feel like I should be allowed to censor your blog to protect myself or the rest of the family. Despite how I might feel about what you write, your story is your story and you should share it in the way that seems right to you. My recollection of what happened is sometimes different from yours. I viewed everything from a different angle. But, I guess that’s my story and if I want it known, I’ll have to tell it.
    In conclusion, I hope you will be kind and gentle and that you will want to share more of our family’s good times than the bad ones. And I hope that you won’t tarnish my public personna too much.

    • Mom,

      Thank you for commenting… and for doing it publicly 🙂 I know that isn’t always something you feel comfortable doing.

      I’ve got a long-winded response for you, but I think you’d prefer I send an email… feel free to post it after you read it if you’re okay with the internets reading it.

  9. Consider the source. Life has enough struggles and frustrations. Never let doubt strike you from an unnamed person because their actions did not demonstrate concern or offer any correction. If their intention was love then hidden identity would not be in question. Divisiveness is a strong source of discouragement. Take confidence in what God is doing in your life. Hold on to that growing relationship.

  10. Thanks, Jason. I think I’ve eventually come to the same conclusion that you did; it’s just a new thing for me to receive such scathing criticism here on the blog. I didn’t know how to deal with it and I felt like I was hiding something if I just deleted it. I probably won’t have that problem next time 🙂

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