“I’m sorry for what religion has done to you, friend.
I’m sorry for the religion that shamed you, scolded you, judged you, and knocked you down.
For the people who claimed they strive to live like Jesus, yet made you the object of their jokes and the subject of their gossip. That mocked you behind closed doors and snickered after you walked by.
Because your past was too rough, your heart was too tattered, and your hard-outer shell was your defense mechanism because you’ve been hurt before.
Because you don’t look like them, don’t act like them, or don’t think like them. Because you’re either ‘too much’ or ‘not enough.’
I’m sorry for the stares you got from the ‘holier than thou’ people in the church pews.
The whispers behind your back.
The fake smiles that met your eyes.
The turned backs.
The harsh words.
All of it. I’m so sorry for what religion has done to you.
But that wasn’t Jesus.
And I don’t think you can convince me that His heart doesn’t break when people are treated this way. No matter who they are.
I’ve prayed for God to break my heart for what breaks His, and right now my heart is tired and broken from talking to so many people who have left the church, and even God, because they could no longer handle being treated less than in the place that was supposed to be their rest.
Where is our accountability?
Why is gossip the sin that is swept under the rug?
Why do we ignore the magnitude of its damage?
And why am I so mad about this?
Because I’ve been the person whose life was rocked from gossip, and I’ve been the person who has rocked lives from choosing to gossip.
God opened my eyes to the destruction and evilness that is happening so prevalently.
We say things like, ‘I am chosen. I am His. I am loved. I am a child of the King. I am sought after.’
And you are.
But so is the person that you’re whispering about.
The person you mock is a beloved child of the King.
The person you whisper about is chosen and loved by God.
And I can’t stand by and not use my voice to sound the alarm of the slippery slope the church is on.
Too many people have walked away. Souls that matter. People who are loved and cherished.
And maybe I won’t change a single mind.
But it’s too important not to try.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Caitlin Henderson of Faith, Farming and Family. You can follow her journey on her website. Submit your own story here and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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