Christianity Has an Identity Problem
I’ve been a Christian my entire life. My mom raised my sister and me in the church and always instilled strong values in us. The basis of what she taught us was to love one another and trust God. It was simple. Treat others how you want to be treated. Be a walking example of what Jesus taught.
I am not perfect—I’ve said that many times before. It’s the truth. No one is perfect. We all fall short, we all make mistakes, we all sin. But this year has made it abundantly clear that Christianity as a whole has an identity problem and it needs to be rebranded.
There are several controversial issues within the church. Women’s rights and LGBTQ rights are the main two that come into play whenever conversations with Christians come up regarding politics. It always baffles me how adamant people are about what they think the Bible says regarding abortion and gay marriage. And for them, no issue in the entire world takes priority over those... Which is pretty wild if you think about it. Advocating for the unborn takes precedence over helping underprivileged neighborhoods? Preventing people who love each other from getting married is more important than fighting for justice for your brother in Christ?
When I think about what it means to be a Christian, I think about Jesus and all he stood for. And the recent fights for social justice have confirmed for me that the people who should be at the forefront of these fights are those who claim to be Christians. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case because the ones bringing the heaviest opposition are the ones who are so loudly proclaiming their faith.
Why is it that the people who oppose fighting for justice for black lives the most are also people who claim to be those who love God? Now, you may ask, “Wouldn’t Jesus advocate for all lives?” Of course he would, but not if all lives weren’t experiencing the same thing.
If you truly ask yourself what would Jesus do, do you think he would look in the face of a Black American and say, “All lives matter”? Or would he be on the frontlines, seeking the long awaited and overdue justice that they seek?
If you truly ask yourself what would Jesus do, do you think he would tell two people who love each other with the love of God that they cannot be together?
If you truly ask yourself what would Jesus do, do you think he would agree that wearing a mask is encroaching on our freedoms, or would he emphasize that wearing a mask is showing that you care for others, because as Christians that is what we are called to do?
If you truly ask yourself what would Jesus do, do you think he would support the behavior of our current commander in chief?
Truly ask yourself. What. Would. Jesus. Do.
Despite what some may think, Jesus didn’t spend his time on earth speaking out against gay marriage or women advocating for their own bodies, or an entire race of people that is simply asking to matter. And if he were alive today, I can promise you he would be wearing a mask.
Christians need to take a hard look at what values they actually stand for, because at the end of the day, how long are you going to let those few things take the place of what your faith is actually supposed to stand for?
Christianity has an identity problem, and it needs to be fixed.
Malynda Hale is a recording artist, actress, business owner and activist. Her passion for using her voice to effect change on multiple platforms social justice, female empowerment, LGBTQ+ rights, veganism, and the Black Lives Matter movement. She is the creator of #WeNeedToTalk, a podcast and blog that centers around important issues within politics, entertainment and culture. She currently serves as a worship leader at Harmony Toluca Lake where she leads a bi-monthly discussion group called "Courageous Conversations" that focuses on social justice topics from a Christian perspective. She is an avid promoter of a lifestyle centered around a plant-based diet and has been a vegan for over a decade.
Follow her at: @malyndahale