Talk About the Passion

Everyone else is putting in their $.02. I may as well, too.

The Passion of the Christ.

I think I’m going to see it, but I don’t know when. I discussed it with a student on my school newspaper staff this morning. She said it was very moving — that she wanted to go into the movie and stop His suffering.

I have to take those critics of Mel Gibson to task. Yes, I think it’s odd that he’s being so sensitive to media criticism, and I think the way he released the movie to invitation-only groups who agreed not to criticize it is strange. On the other hand, I’ve enjoyed his other movies a great deal (Braveheart is my favorite movie). A lot of people want to hang Mel for comments his father made. Well, my grandfather is one of the most racist people I’ve ever known. Growing up, I didn’t hear him ever refer to African-Americans in terms that weren’t pejorative. I feel the same way about my grandfather as Mel does about his father, though. I may not agree with a lot his beliefs, but I also know he has shown great kindness and love to me, the same as Mel’s father did to him. I don’t blame him for not wanting to condemn his father publicly. I wouldn’t want to condemn my grandfather either. Is the movie anti-Semitic? I don’t know. I haven’t seen it. But I can say that I think the charge is ridiculous. I can’t imagine that the movie would assert that every Jew alive at the time was responsible for the death of Christ. That’s ridiculous and narrow-minded. It is much more complicated than that. Who is responsible for Christ’s death? Every person alive who has ever committed a sin, that’s who.

I am a Christian. Some folks think that also automatically means I’m close-minded, anti-Semitic, bigoted, and a whole host of other things I can’t think of off the top of my head. I am none of those things. I don’t have a Bible on my lap, but I know each person must work out his/her salvation, meaning to me that we are all given the information we need to decide what we believe. It is ours to accept or reject. I am not comfortable with proselytizing. My old Baptist church was quite evangelical, and I was made to feel like if I didn’t go out and share the gospel with everyone I knew, then I didn’t really love God all that much or appreciate his sacrifice. I know now that isn’t true.

I don’t talk about religion a lot. It’s divisive. I have friends who are of many different religions and no religion at all, and I want them to stay my friends. I have not criticized their beliefs, nor (I’ve noticed) have they directly criticized mine. I decided a long time ago that people who hit you over the head with their beliefs and make you feel flawed because yours aren’t quite the same don’t really influence anyone so much as make them angry or uncomfortable. One of the most abrasive and annoyingly “right” people I ever knew was constantly sharing the Word. Too bad he didn’t practice it beyond sharing it.

I know if I didn’t have my faith to lean on, there are times I wouldn’t have made it through. Some good things have happened to me that I attribute to prayer and God’s movement in my life. Others may say it was coincidence. I can’t prove otherwise. I only have my faith, and to some faith is not proof enough.

My faith has been tested. The last few years have been hard for me. Right now there are things I’m scared or worried about. Having OCD, it has always been hard for me not to worry. I used to beat myself up about it. I know now I can’t control it. I can’t imagine how bad it might have been if I didn’t have God to lean on.

I’m blogging instead of eating lunch. I’m a little hungry, but I came here to try to put something in words. I’m finding that I can’t really say exactly what I feel. I can’t find the words. Maybe because it was said better elsewhere.