Monday, April 23, 2012

Closet Christian

Jesus shares a space in my kitchen cupboard with the flour and sugar.  Sometimes the cinnamon hits him in the eye.

When the spices are particulary unorderly it resembles a voudou altar.

At the very least I can be accused of idolatry.

So what?

I had nowhere else to put him after the Mormon missionaries gave him to me for safekeeping.  I couldn't bring myself to pitch him in the trash.  Briefly considered recyling.  And didn't particulary want him on my wall.

The cutlery drawer was running out of room.

So that he ended up tucked away in my kitchen cupboard, supposedly out of the way.

And now I see him every day.  Regularly.  Often even.

He is very reassuring.  The peaceful, pretty, glowing, blonde Jesus that my Catholic grandmother introduced me to.

And, although I don't speak to him, he gives me a feeling of calm when I reach past him for the flour.

He's my little secret, tucked away for me.

So that I don't need to be saved by that guy demanding I come up to the altar and publicy profess my faith.   That guy who lured me in there, with my five kids, with a snazzy Hip-Hop version of the Christmas story and then proceeded to call me a sinner and imply that those of us who didn't follow his rules for following Jesus weren't as cool as those who did. 

As if I need to join a church that reminds me of highschool. 

(The Hip-Hop story was great, by the way, thanks.)

I do not know that I am Christian.  I do not accept Christianity's view that there is only one path to salvation and I am not entirely comfortable with the intense missionary zeal of Christianity, this need to make others believe the same way we do.  (I DO admire the immense work accomplished by missionaries and their devotion.  It was this guy on the pulpit recently telling me I was no good unless I signed up for his particular brand of Christianity that really pissed me off.)

And so I keep my Jesus in my closet. He reminds me that we are all brothers and sisters.   He reminds me to love.


  1. I really love this. Thank you :)

  2. So you are a cupboard Christian, eh? I hope that cinnamon is from the West Indies.

  3. WRote this right before Christmas and then didn't want to offend anyone so never posted it. Was inspired by another friend to have the courage to post it!

  4. The cinnamon will now be from the West Indies! Honestly, Brenda, I always think of you - and your blog - when I write some of this crazy spiritual journey stuff. Of course, you never judged me then - accepted and gave - and I should know you would support a spiritual search now as well. I'd say that not everyone is lucky enough to know their spiritual path...but I feel pretty lucky to have to find one so...just know that you are with me, in my thoughts, when I light my crazy candles or say a prayer to Grandma and Jesus all at once - befuddled maybe, but with a good heart. KNowing that missionaries like you and Kevin saw enough in me to not give me up for lost - as well as other spiritual folks I have met since then - makes me think that you must have seen something that gave you hope!

  5. UH - edited version for Jim.

    I will use cinnamon from the West Indies to further my spiritual journey.