Year 6A: The Long Overdue Report

This entry was posted by on Monday, 29 June, 2009 at

Years One, Two, Three, Four, Five

I once stated the goal of answering the question, “Why do otherwise rational and intelligent people believe this absurd story?” I realize that there may be others following this blog who have wondered the same, but who likely have not put quite the amount of time and energy into “studying” the Christian life that I have. As such, I felt that some sort of report on my findings was in order.

I grew up with the stereotype that women were the religious ones and husbands only grudgingly went to church when their wives forced them. I presume that I must have acquired this view from Hollywood, and as a matter of fact, just last week I saw an example of this stereotype being reinforced in the movie Gran Torino. You can perhaps imagine my confusion upon learning that Christian doctrine dictates that the man is commanded to be the spiritual head of household, and that couples within the church seem to conform to that model (at least in outward appearance.)

While the aforementioned stereotype is not totally accurate, neither is it entirely without merit. I have heard at least four grown men deliver their testimony (the story of how they came to Jesus) in front of the church, and all of them began going to church in order to please their wife. Furthermore, I can not remember a grown man providing any other reason for coming to Christ. This leads me to suspect that at least on some level, all men within the church are merely putting on an overly elaborate, and quite likely subconscious, charade for the benefit of their wives.

This obviously does not account for the numerous single men within the church. I have even known a few divorced men whose ex-wives were the ones not interested in following God. The best I can say here is to not underestimate the power of the status quo. It was difficult for me to initially admit to my family that I had begun going to church, and my family does not even care about such things. It was difficult for me to officially stop going to church because even after just a few years, I felt that I had too much invested to walk away empty handed. I can hardly blame someone who has a whole lifetime involvement, plus actual family pressure, for not wanting to even consider alternatives.

While I was initially shocked to find that intelligent, scientifically-minded people would actually be active church participants, it eventually became clear to me that, by and large, men do not casually discuss theology and the things of God unless they are arranged a meeting with the expressed purpose of doing so. I find that the most intelligent discuss other interests such as technology and cell phones, more than you can possibly imagine.

To be continued.

[As this has been quite obviously backdated, I am forced admit that I started it on time but have been reluctant to come back to it, and I felt it best to just post what I had so far.]

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