Sunday, June 26, 2005
Lately I've been thinking a lot about the idea of labeling. A friend and I were talking about "the emergent church" movement. I would probably fit quit well under this label but I hate it. To me it's created an un necessary distinction between the "modern" movement and the "emergent." When you label something you place it aside in a categorized box. You place it behind a screen filter that changes your perspective or understanding of what something says. If I place you in a "Christian" category will hear everything you say thinking and stereotyping the intentions and motives of your expressions. If people hear me giving a critique or an opinion about something and they think of me and have labeled me in the emergent church movement then everything I say can be written off in that category. When I speak or write I am only myself. Understand me as a real person. This labeling leaves room for distorted methods to be accepted among Christians. I've heard people defend methods that are cold, hard, uncompassionate, and oppressive by saying "well they have their way," or "whatever works for them." When someone yells from a street corner condemnation on those who do not accept Christ do not label it. If it does not fit comfortably under a label of love, compassion, justice, and grace it's not good and should be stopped. Don't excuse something by separating yourself from it. Mankind is all under the same label.