David, you’re hurting the church. Why can’t you just be quiet?
I’ve been told all my life to be quiet for the sake of the church. Sure, I can preach, teach, guide, and help. But don’t challenge anyone or ask questions or express doubts because it hurts the church and I’ll go to hell Plus I could lose my job.
How do my words hurt anyone? The church claims to be an instrument of truth. How do people find truth if they are not allowed to ask, seek, and knock? Is the institution really so fragile that it can’t handle my voicing my thoughts?
When I was a young preacher in the churches of Christ, they taught that instrumental music in worship was evil. I thought it was ridiculous but I had to be careful with my words or I could lose my job. Later, I learned to refrain from voicing a dissenting opinion on baptism in the United Methodist church because I wanted to keep my job. For the same reason, I also kept quiet about much bigger issues, including our relationship with the LGBTQIA.
Yet job security was rarely mentioned. Instead, we spoke of how damaged the church could be if we even brought up these subjects. It’s interesting that an institution with the power to affect my life so dramatically could be so fragile.
Now, I’m still being urged to stay quiet. But I’m not going to. Silence makes us sick. It can even kill. I always wanted to be a healer so I’ll continue to speak up.
I’ll try to be respectful and reasonable. Just not quiet.