Is it even possible to be a Christian? I guess before asking this question I need to ask; what is a Christian?
Being a Christian has to mean more than just believing in something. It has to be more than just mental ascent to certain doctrines. It means actually following Christ.
If being a Christian mean following Christ; aligning your life with Jesus way of living then it means a lot of things. It means being just like Jesus. It means someone who loves, is patient, who heals and restores, is kind, is truthful, is never self seeking, always does what is right, and seeks for the restoration of the world in all he does. Is that even possible?
Just the self seeking part sounds impossible to me. Christians always do things for themselves. They either do it so they can go to heaven or “store up treasure in heaven.” Selfishness has become a huge aspect of modern Christianity. Why do we become Christians at all except to save our own hides?
What about the restoration part? Aren’t we the ones who are screwing up the world anyway? For every restorative thing I do, I do ten more destructive ones. I can’t keep up with my own messes let alone anyone else’s. This is especially true in America. Every church building we build is another orphanage we could be building in Romania or Haiti. Every potluck we hold is another meal that could be shared with the hungry people sleeping on the street around the corner. The meal you ate last night could probably have fed a child in Sudan for a week. We can’t keep up.
As for the healing part, how many people have you prayed for and then watched die? How many times have you watched someone just come back to life from death? How many sick people have you touched and then seen them become healthy? How many healings have you witnessed? For me it’s none, of course I’ve heard stories but never have I been the cause for such healing. And unless you’re Benny Hinn I’ll bet you’re in the same boat.
According to this definition I’ve met few if any Christians. Nobody I’ve met is just like Jesus.
So maybe there’s something else to being a Christian; something beyond action and belief, beyond what we do and what we say, beyond what we can produce. Maybe true Christianity goes deeper than our failure. Maybe it actually weaves itself so deep within us, so deep beneath our skin that it’s actually in our blood. Maybe what we can produce is not what defines us. If it is in our blood then failure doesn’t take it away. It circulates through our bodies inhabiting the deepest places within us.
Maybe that is why suffering is so important… could it be that it is through the spilling of our blood that Christ is revealed fullest? Our identity flows in our blood and what would identify us more with Christ than with the spilling of blood. If we are the body of Christ then blood is what gives us life. Christ suffered for the world, spilling His blood. His body was pierced and beaten. He defeated death by the spilling of His blood. When we, the body of Christ, are Crucified with Christ then the cross doesn’t have the final word. Death has been defeated.
Following Christ is all about blood.