Nasty women in the bible, I love you

Nasty women in the bible, I love you

Here is a partial list of nasty women in the Bible. Please feel free to add the names and stories of other such nasty women of faith.


 

Shiphrah and Puah
Midwives committing acts of civil disobedience

Deborah
Judge, warrior and prophet you predicted the defeat of the Canaanites – by one nasty as hell woman, Jael.

Huldah
Prophet comfortable speaking truth directly to the religious authorities of the day.

Ruth
Left her own people, lost everything, loyal even when mama-in-law bid her go.

Susanna
Sexually harassed by creepy, spying elders. Being a nasty woman, she refuses their advances and refuses to be blackmailed. Gets arrested and sentenced to death. Found innocent.

Vashti
Risked her life, and lost her marriage because she refused to be treated like property by the king.

Esther
Being a shrewd, cunning and patient woman, took on most powerful men in the region and prevented genocide of her people.

Tamar
Pretended to be a prostitute for a dumb, horny man of power so she could have a royal rug rat. Man of power who used her, could not pay her, later orders her to be put to death for the very thing he used her for. Because she was a smart, nasty woman, was able to save her life and the life of her unborn child because the asshat couldn’t even pay her for her services…

Mary Magdalene
Defied societal norms to be a disciple of One who would later be executed by the state at the behest of the religious authorities.

Sassy Samaritan Woman
Spars jovially with Jesus at the well, learns something worth sharing and returns home as first evangelist in John. Preach it sister!

The Syrophoenician Woman
Talked back to Jesus who was being a bit of a xenophobe when he called her dog. Guess what Jesus said to her for her nasty
sass? “O woman, your faith is great; it shall be done for you as you wish.”

Tabitha
First woman recognized as a female disciple. So beloved by her community and the other disciples, that she was snatched from the claws of death to keep on keepin’ on.

Priscilla, Lois and Phoebe
Women be silent in church? Nah – these nasty women schooled the hell out of men and spoke truth to power.

 

The beautiful and terrified heart of one lesbian’s mama

The beautiful and terrified heart of one lesbian’s mama

It’s been almost six years since mama died and it has taken me nearly twice that long to understand her beautiful, terrified heart.

By all accounts, Beverly was a loving wife and mother. To my father she was devoted and true, to her daughters, a constant presence of self-sacrifice. Life with mama was golden…
…and rocky.

For most of my childhood, mom stayed home and made sure we had the best of meals, the cleanest of clothes and every toy our hearts desired and daddy’s hard-earned paycheck could provide. Every breakfast was hot (grits, always grits), all lunches were crafted to meet her finicky kids’ tastes and dinner each night was on the table shortly after daddy got home and scrubbed the iron shards from under his fingernails.

Growing up in the ‘70s, I had all the freedom I wanted to roam, especially in the summer, when there as never a shortage of ready-to-grab snacks (I can hardly believe that one of my faves was raw Oscar Meyer weiners…), face-freezing popsicles and a seemingly endless supply of Koolaide.

Mama and daddy got us to church every chance they had, including Sunday mornings and evenings, vacation bible school, Wednesday night suppers, youth group on Thursdays and even scraped up enough money to send me on my one and only youth group summer retreat to Panama City where I came back with a little bit more Jesus and a first kiss to boot!

But, mom and I had a few things working against us.

One, she suffered from severe, nearly debilitating hormonal fluctuations that in her day, the egregiously ignorant medical community would label and medicate as hysteria or hypochondria. Keeping up with mama’s mood swings was a tightrope act from which one could have their little umbrella snatched without warning.

Two, she was raised to believe that the bible was literally, factually true.

Three, and I imagine this will not shock y’all, but I was a teensy bit willful growing up. Just a smidge. Or maybe I was just my own person. Same same, eh?

There are scars to my psyche and body from those days as I stretched my downy wings and wound up on the wrong end of a searing switch more often than not.

In the late 80’s I was in my first year at UGA, hurling myself as far from her orbit as I could, and had to have my wisdom teeth out, she came to me, sat with me and served me heaps of KFC mashed potatoes with a warmth and love that I would not understand for a couple more decades.

Later she would tell me that college ruined me. She would tell me that the doctor put the wrong egg in her basket.

Like I said, rocky.

Looking back now, I understand that all mama truly wanted was a loving and hard-working husband (which she was blessed to have ’til the day she died), a respectable roof over our heads and daughters to snuggle, dress up and become her best friends when they grew up. She had every reason to believe that would come to pass because meemaw, my grandmother and her mother, was in fact her best friend and they talked on a beige, tethered-to-wall phone three times every day until the day meemaw suddenly died at what now seems like the very young age of 69.

As the years passed, I pulled away while I was trying to figure myself out. Once I did figure myself out, when I came out, rocky turned to intolerable.

She said every nasty thing a person could say to a child, and she spat it with such venom that I could not begin to perceive the desperate love masked by her abuse. She was mean, she was cruel and she hurt me in ways that are still tender if I poke at ‘em too much. She called me at all hours of the day and night to scream at me, she said it would be better if I were dead and she tried to turn my own little girl against me. Finally, as an act of self preservation, I had to withdraw all contact from her and my dad for nearly three years. We all cried a river of tears and I am still tossing buckets of regret overboard. Reconciliation did finally come one Easter morning, but that’s a story for another day.

What I have come to understand all these years later is that she harbored a fierce, savage, unhinged love, that unfortunately was egregiously misinformed by a lifetime of bad theology.

And it is because I am a mama (sometimes on the wrong side of the mama/daughter relationship) that I’m finally starting to live into compassion and forgiveness – for us both.

See, I would do anything to protect my own daughter. If she were in harm’s way, I would move heaven and earth, and even shred my own heart to save her from suffering.

Let’s say my little girl, Z was crossing a busy intersection. And let’s imagine that from where I stood, I could not see that she was safely in the crosswalks but that it appeared to me as if she was about to be smashed to smithereens by the onslaught of vehicles, and maybe a meteor or two. I can vividly imagine hurling myself into the fray, jeopardizing my own safety, grabbing her by her little arm and yanking her bird-like body to the security of the curb. I’d likely have bruised or broken her in the process. I would be devastated that I had caused her injury (hell, I wept when she got her immunizations), but I might also be sure I’d done the right thing to save her life.

Then I thought, hey Kimberly imagine you’re a mom who’s been indoctrinated into believing, with every fiber of your being, that your baby girl would suffer for all eternity because she “has been lured by satan” and is living a “homosexual lifestyle”. What would you do after having endless nightmares of your baby girl’s flesh searing and boiling in an eternal lake of fire. Would you feel terror in your heart, an animal-like desperation to save your baby? What lengths might I go to in order to save her from a fate that I truly (but wrongly) believe awaits her?

Today some might call mom’s behavior “tough love.” Or bigoted hatred. Or a borderline personality disorder flaring like an eruption on the sun. Perhaps it they’d say it was a bitter little cocktail of all of the above. I think now all I am qualified to call it is a mama’s naive mind twisted and distorted by a church that lines its collection plate with the currency of ignorance, fear and loathing. And looking back at photos of that young woman holding her infant in 1969, I also would call it love because I now know that no matter how grown I am, mama still saw her little girl playing dress-up.

Now I am not telling you all this to excuse her behavior or justify my own, just to share what I see differently now that I have applied the windex of compassion to my rearview mirror.

And it took me ’til my 40s, after giving birth to my own daughter, after a decade of prayer and study and discernment in community, and a vast network of wise, loving and LGBT affirming Christians, yep, Christians, to be able to zoom out and see the complexity of her and beautiful heart and terrified mind. She had been formed by a lifetime of beliefs that unequivocally, but wrongly, understood that homosexuality was horrific, deviant, sinful behavior that would lead to hell. What else was a mama to do?

So what’s is THIS mama to do with this new clarity? She’s to share with all who have ears to hear – parents, children, friends – that:

a. the teachings of the church about sexuality and gender identity are changing in response to reason and grace

b. we can and should reject leaders who tell us to abuse and abandon children who are living into the way God created them to love

c. my own experience, informed by a deep faith in the extravagant, radical love of Jesus, confirms for me on a daily basis, with a peace that surpasses understanding, that fear is the way of death and love and hope are the way of life.

Thanks be to God for the journey.

You keep calling yourself a “Christian,” I do not think it means what you think it means

You keep calling yourself a “Christian,” I do not think it means what you think it means

Some days, ok most days, I am beyond grateful for my calling to make room at my table for a myriad of disparate voices.  Most days I feel blessed to serve spoon-fulls of of love, generous dollops of peace, steaming bowls of slow-cooked reconciliation and a sweet slice of Grace.

And then there are days like today. A day where the charred and bitter Brussels sprouts of plain truth are all that’s left to serve.  It might not taste good, but it is good for what ails ya.

“Christian” trolls…

Stop dropping random and disjointed scripture in blog comments, on my Facebook wall, and in private messages.  Please stop reading this blog, really – don’t comment anymore,  hell, go on and block me on Facebook if you worship a god whom you truly believe rewarded Lot for offering his daughters to be raped instead of the male guests in his house.

I have no interest in what you say if you stride around confidently throwing Leviticus 18:22 as if it applies to all people today, but you, well, sorta skip over other verses in Leviticus because, well that was only for the people of Moses’ time so they don’t really apply to us now.

Leviticus 19:19
19 You shall keep my statutes. You shall not let your animals breed with a different kind; you shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed; nor shall you put on a garment made of two different materials.

Leviticus 19: 33-34
33 When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. 34The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.

Leviticus 25: 36-37
36Do not take interest in advance or otherwise make a profit from them, but fear your God; let them live with you. 37You shall not lend them your money at interest taken in advance, or provide them food at a profit.

You really are not brining anything of value, love or grace to the conversation (and you sure as hell a’int bring anyone closer to Jesus) if you’re armed to the teeth with every jot and tittle credited to Paul as if  they are literal and to be applied to all people, everywhere for all time but you read the Luke 6:20-26 as, well, metaphorical.

20 Then he looked up at his disciples and said:‘Blessed are you who are poor,   for yours is the kingdom of God. 21 ‘Blessed are you who are hungry now,   for you will be filled.‘Blessed are you who weep now,   for you will laugh.
22 ‘Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. 23Rejoice on that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets. 24 ‘But woe to you who are rich,   for you have received your consolation. 25 ‘Woe to you who are full now,  for you will be hungry.‘Woe to you who are laughing now,   for you will mourn and weep.
26 ‘Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets.

I know right? Luke is like way harsher than Matthew, but of course Luke didn’t mean like, the actual poor and for real rich, today, in Uhmericuh did he?

Stop saying you follow Jesus if you are obsessed with 5-7 bible verses that you believe speak to same-sex, mutually loving, relationships, but don’t give a rats ass about over 300 verses that speak directly to caring for the poor.

If you call yourself a Christian (and relate to God and your neighbor) primarily through the lens of Leviticus and Paul rather than the ONE who we as a country are forsaking by leaving Him hungry, thirsty, alienated, naked, sick and solitary in prison (Matthew 25:21-46 in case you were wondering) – then I don’t think that word means what you think it means.

Oh, and while I’m on a roll, I might as well throw this’n in for good measure – if the “right to bear arms” is sacrosanct, but believing in and striving for a day when we can all beat our swords into ploughshares is some hippy-freak crap to be ignored  (and if you have no idea what I’m talking about, try reading your bible rather than chucking it at people), stop misrepresenting yourself as one who sets the guideposts of your life by the bible.

If this is what you bring to the table, I experience you not as a follower of Christ in whom we are free, but as a hard hearted, biblically illiterate, superstitious, idol worshipper who wouldn’t know Jesus if you were nailing him to the cross yourself.

 

A lesbian and a fundamentalist walk into a bar

A lesbian and a fundamentalist walk into a bar

Ok, so it was really a Starbucks in a little strip-mall out in the northern suburbs of Atlanta but you have to admit “A lesbian and a conservative minister walk into a suburban Starbucks” just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

Anywho…

As some of you know, last week I wrote an open letter to Billy Humphrey of IHOP-Atlanta (NOT the pancakes place y’all, and yeah, I think it is a silly name for a ministry too). I was writing in reply to one of his six recent posts about homosexuality and gay marriage. After reading (maybe…) my open letter, Billy responded in public that he had no interest in or time to get into an online debate with me. To which I responded that I found it frustratingly convenient and dismissive since he had taken plenty of time to write multiple posts about homosexuals but now, all of sudden, he was too busy to respond to a critique of his missives. So, Billy reached out to me privately on Facebook to reiterate he was a very busy man but that he would be open to a coffee sometime if I’d like to discus things with him personally. I reiterated that I found his original response frustratingly dismissive but that yes, I would like to have coffee with him. As we narrowed down a time and place I also told him that I did not feel safe meeting with him…

On Friday, July 12, after dropping off our youngest at Shakespeare camp, I jumped into the madness of Atlanta’s morning traffic and headed out to the ‘burbs to meet him at the Starbucks he recommended.

We talked for nearly 3 hours and I am still processing all that we shared. I left that meeting depleted, sad, convicted, resolute and faithful.

Here’s a basic brain-dump of what I took away from our meeting.

This is hard, hard work and we both agree that there are no easy answers.

Billy is charismatic. He makes direct eye contact and he is prone to fist bumps and high fives.

Billy’s ministry is doing some good things in the world such as engaging the devastating human trafficking industry and establishing an adoption agency as a way of living into his faith that in order to “stop abortion” there must be loving, affordable options. (I did not ask, but after our conversation am certain that my family would not be allowed to adopt from his agency).

Billy seems genuinely sorry for the horrific abuse LGBT folks have suffered at the hands of Christians.

Billy wants me to know that he “does not hate me.”  He “does not hate homosexuals.”

Billy is secure in his belief that homosexuality is a sin and that to love people who identify as homosexual he is called as part of his ministry to help gay people “out of the gay life.”

Billy believes fully in the validity of ex-gay ministry. He believes that the testimony of one “ex-gay” should stand as a guidepost for all gay people.

I believe that ex-gay ministry is a dangerous, deadly lie banked on the testimony of people who have been psychology manipulated who could be anywhere on the sexuality spectrum.

Billy and I read the bible VERY differently.

We each believe that the other is reading it wrong. In fact we can hardly believe we are reading the same book.

We understand the role of religion in public policy very differently, but admittedly in a few similar ways…

Billy believes that one understanding of God’s will (which is codified for all time in the Bible, and only the Bible as it is currently configured,  to be understood literally, factually – unless of course we have to talk about all 600 plus laws found through the cannon)  DOES in fact have the right to determine the laws of the United States.

To be honest, I too am praying and working for a Gospel infused government – only my understanding of that has nothing to do with people’s bedrooms and has everything to do with feeding the hungry, uplifting the poor, clothing the naked and seeking justice that rolls down like water for the accused and imprisoned.

Since I am queer AND a Christian Universalist, Billy does not regard me as an actual Christian.

Since he is a conservative, biblical literalist, I do not regard him as living into the example (and according to the exhortations) of Christ.

By the end of the conversation he made a deeply painful truth abundantly clear. According to his understanding of scripture, his family is real, mine is not; his family is valid, mine is not. Appeals to his empathy through imploring him to imagine different scenarios where his family was broken apart by people who did not regard his family as real seemed to fall on a deaf heart. His expectations for someone like me to “leave the gay life” (yeah, I told him) means that I would have to break up a family and rob children of their parents. See above note about the validity of my family.

Our understandings of sin, righteousness and Kingdom building are irreconcilable.

He believes in order to be true to God he must be “a bad guy” to me.  I told him that I believe he is being “the bad guy” to both me and God.

And from this conversation I am called to claim something about myself and my motives. As a bridge builder I have to be honest and say that I am building bridges with the hopes of people like Billy crossing over to my side – just as people like Billy hope that I will cross over to their side.

Saddest of all, we both agreed that there is little to be said between us moving forward.  It was clear to us both that we are confident in our own position, our own understanding of how we are called to respond to God. We are each secure in our faith. Billy says he loves me, but that love calls him to require that renounce the way my creator has created me (which I believe would be a sin to do), to break up my family and live a dark and painful half-life. My love for Billy yearns for his heart and mind to be opened in ways that he truly believes is evil.

This is true and real: there really is no way to stand in the gap with one another if each is pulling in an opposite direction where each is certain damnation awaits us the other side.

As heartbreaking as this is, I want to claim for myself and proclaim for others something in no uncertain terms. We as progressives tend to bend over backward to affirm all paths as equal. But to be raw and honest, I believe there is a capital T truth and I do not believe it is on the path that Billy currently is following. The true north of Scripture is Love, a love that is active with in-breaking Grace, a love that liberates us from the small minds and wills of men to live into the Spirit of freedom and justice for all. If I really, really believe this, then I can not claim that Billy’s truth is True any more than he can acknowledge my truth to be True.

 

 

Where do we go from here?

 

An Open Letter to Billy Humphrey of IHOP Atlanta on ‘Homosexuality and Gay Marriage’

An Open Letter to Billy Humphrey of IHOP Atlanta on ‘Homosexuality and Gay Marriage’

My friend Mike Morrell invited me to read and respond to a post produced by Billy Humphrey of IHOP-Atlanta.  Mike graciously reminded me to use my words (and some of those words come from our similarly conservative backgrounds).  Mike shared my response as a guest post on his own blog today. Here is my response (and Mike’s note). 

 


Dear Billy,

Good afternoon. I am an Atlanta-born, Christian mom who recently read your post A Christian Stance on Homosexuality and Gay Marriage. I am writing because I am concerned about the same things you are. As a mother and a Christian I am personally – and ardently – concerned about the rapid changes in our society that reveal a growing acceptance of same-sex marriage.

The source of my concern springs from my deep faith and desire to honor and protect families – especially Christian families like mine who it seems are under constant attack in the public sphere. As I am sure you can understand, my family is everything to me, our children the light of our lives. Every day I am shocked by the rising din of vitriol directed at families who want only the best for our children as we seek to follow the Light of the World. I can hardly explore Facebook or turn on the news without hearing how wrong I am and how twisted my faith is. When my family is in public, we even hear the searing conversations at supposedly family-friendly establishments.

I feel called, like you, to stand in the gap. To pray, and work to stem the rising tide of darkness that seeks to confuse the hearts of faithful followers of Jesus Christ, and citizens of our great land.

What might surprise you is that I am a lesbian – a wife, mother, and Christian, who feels the promptings of the Holy Spirit to stand up to the anti-gay agenda that is tightening its death-grip increasingly over the Evangelical and charismatic church in North America.

In light of having quite a different experience of the Living Christ from you, you might question my motives for writing this open letter to you. No need to question – here’s what inspires me:

  1. There are Christian leaders and believers who seem to believe they have the authority to speak for the Church Universal when in fact they do not. There are people of deep faith, churches actively engaged in life-changing ministries and whole Jesus-following, God-loving and disciple-making denominations who think, believe, worship and work very differently than what you propose in your letter.
  2. There are churches, quite clear in their walk with Jesus, affirming their LGBT sisters and brothers in the life of the church and as citizens who deserve equal treatment under the law in a country that has pledged to uphold the separation of church and state.
  3. This clarity – born out of Scripture reading, discernment, Christ-like empathy and loving our community – has lead to deep conviction that Christians are called to work with and for their LGBT neighbors as we seek to live into the radical hospitality of Jesus, together.
  4. As you are well aware, all indicators point to the fact that 18-30 year-olds know full well that marriage has been redefined throughout history to suit the needs of powers and principalities. (Might I recommend a book on spiritual warfare that you are likely unfamiliar with? The Powers That Be, by Walter Wink. It might just change your life and ministry.) We both know that it is a lie of immense proportions that the Bible only condones the marriage of one man to one woman. Between Levirite marriages, the sample of King Solomon and the projections of weak and broken men who claim that God would commend them for raping conquered peoples, Scripture hardly has a consistent message about marriage.
  5. Churches everywhere are answering a call to participate in sacred activism that seeks to bend the arc of the universe toward justice for LGBT people. The United Church of Christ, the PC(USA), the Alliance of Baptists and the Episcopal Church are just a few that represent thousands upon thousands of churches that are working together to shine the light of God in new and exciting ways.

Billy, I have heard of Atlanta’s International House of Prayer, and your reputation for having a passion for both God and reaching people. I commend this, as it is near and dear to my heart and ministry also. It is because of this mutual affinity that we have in Christ that I feel so grieved, as your sister in Christ, to read your words in this and other recent posts. I am afraid that your hyper-focus on individual sexual morality, and homosexuality in particular, draws neither from the Gospel of Jesus Christ nor the cries of God to let justice roll down like water. Jesus said not one word condemning same-sex relationships but did have a pointed word about divorce.

Make no mistake about it, your differing opinion (not your right to differ) is being challenged because you are vilifying people who are children of God, not an “issue.” Your position is being challenged because you strive to impose a single, narrow interpretation ofone stream of faith on a sexually and spiritually diverse nation.

I am called as a mother, a wife, a Christian, a church member and a citizen of this country to stand up and speak boldly in the face of a Christianity that has been twisted by xenophobia and willful ignorance.

A suggested attitude for Christians

In a spirit of love and peace, I am inviting you to a true posture of humility.

  1. Receive in your heart the action of the Holy Spirit in the world today. Here is truth: I am a Christian. I am a mother. I am also a lesbian. I love God. I follow Jesus. I am devoted to my family. I am not struggling with my sexuality or my faith. I am struggling with fellow Christians who are spending so much time and energy trying to defraud me of the Grace that is freely given. I am struggling with a wing of the Church that chooses to spend the trust, time and talent of good people trying to prevent me from living in peace and pursuing happiness in my own country. I am struggling with churches that waste their faith on policing people’s bedrooms rather than seeking justice for the poor, the weak, the imprisoned as we Christians have been called to do by Jesus.
  2. Recognize that you are continuing to inflict the very pain you claim to renounce. When you parrot misleading oversimplifications and blatantly stereotypical phrases such as “gay life” you are contributing to a persistently painful paradigm. There is no such thing as a universal gay lifestyle or gay agenda.
  3. Cease the notion that what you are doing is compassionate. You cannot reach out in compassion if you refuse to see me as a full human and my sexuality as a gift from my Creator. If you think truth in love is “love the sinner and hate the sin,” then your love is a sham, a dangerous lure and conditional. This is contrary to the Grace revealed by Jesus.
  4. Stop the false polemic of gay vs. Christian. It is simply a lying dichotomy. You are either lying to yourself or to everyone who trusts you. The only agenda I have is to follow Jesus while I work for my own justice and the justice of my sisters and brothers.

I am not an issue. I am a child of God.

  1. Love compels me to speak truth to power. Your voice is not the only voice of Christianity and to claim it is (or should be) the only true voice is pure hubris. Hubris is not a fruit of the Spirit.
  2. I am afraid your salt is laced with the arsenic of bitter lies, and your light is fanning the flames of hatred.
  3. What you are preaching is not the Gospel of undeserved liberation, unmerited grace and unending peace revealed in the Word Who is Christ.
  4. You’re version and vision of Christianity does speak for all Christians.
Sexuality is as intensely personal as it is communal and (these days) headline-making. I don’t wish to speculate as to what formed you – and many, it seems, in the contemporary Pentecostal, charismatic, and ‘prophetic’ stream of the Church – to focus and fixate on what you perceive to be sexual brokenness. Was it some personal pain? Is it simply the ‘meme’ or message you’ve imbibed? I don’t know. But I want to exhort you, brother, that there is a better way – a way filled with more sweetness, and light. Repent – by which I mean metanoia, change your mind! – in a direction away from obsession with sexual behavior. I understand that you identify as a man of prayer, and of worship, beholding as in a mirror the glory of God. See once again this God’s face, and see if your attention isn’t turned, re-oriented, back toward what Jesus actually beckons us to do – care for the hungry, thirsty, naked and imprisoned.Believe Out Loud is one of my all time favorite organizations that empowers Christians to work for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality. Reaching nearly one million individuals a week, we elevate the people and places where Christianity and LGBT justice intersect.

As a fellow Christian, minister, American, and Atlantan, this is my prayer for you and the IHOP community under your influence.

Your sister in Christ,

Kimberly Knight

 

BOLO: Bible Drive-By Linked to Myth Labs

BOLO: Bible Drive-By Linked to Myth Labs

Coming Out Christian blotter report: Independence Day, 2013

FBPD received a status update reporting a possible bible drive-by at the corner of Faith St. and Reason Ave. at approximately 6:15 p.m.  Unit 2239 responded to the J316 call immediately and set up a permitter to assess the scene.

Witnesses report there was a quiet party occurring at the intentional community residence known as Patheos where a diverse group of guests had been coming and going most of the day.  A small group of 12 or so had gathered on the front porch, passing around what appeared to broken bread and a cup of wine.

Just after dusk an unidentified perpetrator rolled up in what witness claim was a light brown, late model, Chevy Camelus, and pulled out a Winchester KJV and began shooting verses in the direction of the victims.  “Random OT & NT clobber texts were flyin’ all over the place” said one witness.  “That guy was just shootin’ with no regard for who he hit or if they was hurt at all.” said another.

Victims were low and transported to the nearest pub for immediate intervention.

Investigators looking into this incident have identified the perpetrator as a repeat offender known as Troll who is connected to a sprawling gang known for running Myth labs and trafficking weapons of mass delusion.  This gang is mistakenly believed to be the sole representative voice of organized Christianity in America and reportedly boasts membership in the millions.  (Members can sometimes be seen wearing WWJD insignia).  This gang is acknowledged to be well funded and politically powerful.  Agencies around the nation (UU, UCC, PC(USA), MCC, Emergent Village, Faith in Public Life, Believe Out Loud, The Beatitudes Society and many more) are beginning to cooperate to address the complex problems of Myth Labs and Bible Drive-Bys.

How to Recognize a Myth Lab
Ingredients to Make Myth Can Be Toxic

Mythianity, also known as Myth, is a highly addictive, synthetic and explosive substance made through a blending of a handful of disjointed Christian proof texts, exclusionary doctrines and mindless creeds that produce intense hubris, unbridled certitude and long periods of self-righteousness.

The ingredients used to make Myth in mega-laboratories are generally kind and gentle ingredients found in homes across America,  that by themselves present little danger, but when combined with some of the below listed ingredients can have seriously toxic and explosive effects.

If you came in contact with a Myth lab operation, how would you know it? What ingredients and equipment would be present? What should you do if you find a Myth lab?

Anhydrous Amens –  Anhydrous, meaning without water, is what sets these amens apart from holy utterances infused with the water of life.  A known antidote to Anhydrous Amens is repeated doses of Amos 5:24

Asinine    – Asinine is a natural element and helpful to the body in small amounts (especially when suppressing inhibitors in order to enjoy theme parks with young children). But taken in large amounts, Asinine becomes toxic. Asinine can be rendered inert by repeated exposure to Sophia.

Archetypal Enmity – Stereotyped characters that people can easily identify and label to make the story clear and “simple”. The good person, the villain and so on.

Lie  – Classified as a corrosive, lie is an essential element in producing the addictive substance Myth. Lie can be acquired from external as well as internal sources. Lie is often derived by reductive reasoning that obfuscates essential passages that otherwise point to God’s hunger for justice.  Know lie when you see it: “God hates” are clues that it may be a lie

Pauline Fixative   – Pauline Fixative’s effect of releasing dopamine is thought to be one reason people become so addicted to Mythianity. The problem is that by hyper focusing on the fixative Pauline rather than the liberative work of Jesus, Myth users eventually lose the ability to feel compassion at all.  See also Bibliolatry.

Sweet Vitriol –  because of its hypnotic effect, this highly flammable substance is used as an anesthetic agent – especially in conversations with highly educated people where more anesthesia necessary to potentially induce paradigm shifts. While inhaling the compound, Christians could undergo complete theological procedures while otherwise awake without feeling pain or concern.

Vicious Vivication – inflammatory words and phrases like abomination, homosexual lifestyle (see also homosexual agenda), “the bible is clear about”,  or judgement day are used to ignite people’s emotions and fears. See also Lie.

If you stumble into a Myth lab run by Trolls, you should decontaminate yourself and your thinking as quickly as possible, wash your heart thoroughly, and call your local huggers.

Children are especially vulnerable to the psychological and emotional affects of long term exposer to Myth labs due to their  innocent acceptance of contaminated thinking and essentially trusting nature.

Cleaning up a Myth lab is a dangerous and complicated process which should be engaged by both theologically trained professionals as well as kind and gentle Christians who are seeking to live into the example of radical hospitality set by Jesus.

Do not attempt to clean up or dispose of a suspected Myth lab yourself. You will get burned.

 


 

I want to take a moment to thank Daneen Akers again for the phrase Bible Drive-by – brilliant. Daneen is producer director of the documentary film about the experiences, struggles and reconciling spiritual journeys of gay and lesbian Seventh-day Adventists.  Stay tuned for a post about this film. (http://www.sgamovie.com)