Paging through Time magazine this week I came across an amusing ad from the Unitarian Universalist Congregations. It's amusing to me to see how far this "denomination" will go to abandon all vestiges of religion and objective belief. But they do seem to reflect the spirit of our culture about religion: individualism and relativism. They do have their fingers on the pulse of the nation. Unfortunately, religion is more about medicine than ice cream socials, offering a remedy for what ails mankind rather than catering to our sweet tooth.
Here's the message of the ad: (on the link, look to the right margin for a picture of it)
is GOD keeping you from going to CHURCH?
Maybe you're uncomfortable with the idea of God - or at least someone else's idea of God. Yet maybe you yearn for a loving, spiritual community where you can be inspired and encouraged as you search for your own truth and meaning. This is a church, you ask? Welcome to Unitarian Universalism.
You can just hear how "GOD" is supposed to be pronounced here - Gawwwwd. (Use a stereotypical televangelist voice when saying it.) It's scary. Off putting. And since "CHURCH" is also highlighted, I guess that's another scary word. That's why it's the Unitarian Universalist Congregations, not Church.
But maybe, in truth, God is scary because we're at odds with Him. Shouldn't we face that fact rather than making people comfortable to find their own idea of God they like? God's going to be a lot scarier on judgment day if we've taken solace from our own truth and meaning rather than reconciling with Him. It won't be very "nurturing to your soul" to meet God on your own.
Notice that they invite people to search for their "own truth and meaning," which doesn't necessarily include any God at all.
We can agree that we're not looking for "someone else's idea of God." But where we disagree is that we should be looking for God's idea about Himself that He's revealed to us out of grace and love.
This may be a pleasant welcome to a Unitarian Universalist congregation, but I doubt it'll be a pleasant welcome when meeting God.