Folks: Don’t be alarmed.
Usually I don’t write stuff about church that much, really because I belong to a church family. And yes, I’m a 4th Generation UMC Member. But however after listening and reading conversations about why church folks don’t do enough, or those like to make a mockery of the inspirational giving, it’s apparently that yes, being a church goer believing in God the father, the Son and the Holy Spirit fully can be a huge battle. It’s a battle that raged on for centuries, generations, eras, and changing times. It’s even a battle today, even on Social Media. Now, I don’t mean to get picked on, or talked about, it’s really nothing but hate of understanding. Yes, there are those who mock the church things. Those who have to display on their platforms about what the church should be doing than not doing. I get it. There are those who probably went to church earlier in life and got all confused with some snarly wisdom that those who feel that it was hypocritical. I will admit, church folks (no matter what denomination or faith) can be some what hypocritical at times. BUT some can be forgiving and reminders of what the positive can be if given a chance. And by the way, folks outside of church can be hypocritical anywhere. You might have hypocritical co workers or bosses. Or neighbors, friends and family. Some say it’s all fake. It’s not real. Jesus Christ was just a figment of an imagination. Or the story of Christmas with the Christmas tree was copied from a tree wrapped around with a snake. – Um, SO! Where the reference? When folks actually get these “sources” no matter where they are from, usually it’s not the actuate truth. They probably just got it from someone without any true reference. Where’s the bibliography, the sources of footnotes? UM Hello those like to post things like that on Facebook! And Instagram. You say its the truth, well…..where’s the truth? That’s like saying, “hey son: I want to show you this picture of a real Christmas tree. You know how it got started?” “Where did it come from?” the son asked. “Oh, the Internet. This such and such website”. Many folks need to review how things got referenced. I’m just saying.
Now fast forward, and this is an old story. You may have heard this on the radio, or online about “these church folks who go to church on Sundays need to come out and knock on some doors to help the community!” You know as strange as that sounds, it’s agreeable. HOWEVER: I need to address this to the black community, and I don’t care if you are in Milwaukee, here is something that I know: many of you or some of you don’t want church folks around period. Oh, I just ruffled some feathers. Let’s face it. How many of you reading this blog had ever had a church member or a church group tried to help you out in some way, and you turned away a said no – in this case in a mean manner of disrespect? And some of you USED to go to church, or claimed to be a non-going person that was talked among your friends who thought were telling the truth. Think about it. You probably got friends right now thinking this. You probably got family members believing this. Or maybe you got those that you went to school, college, the Military, Fraternity, Sorority, neighbor, boss, co-worker that probably said the exact same thing! And some probably got you on their list on Facebook or Instagram. Or any other social media platform.
Yeah you “hear all this” from your friends in all, or from a radio station that mentioned it, and you tend to believe them. For me, I think I feel sorry for them. Just like when per say, you grew up this and that and have this hatred against a certain denomination. And you remember going to the services and then out to eat and go home. Is that ALL you’ve done?
Here’s my question, I want the current former folks of the church to ask this: When you were going Pentecostal, Methodist (either United Methodist, AME or Pan African Methodist), Baptist, or any other group living and breathing, what activities, or ideas did you bring up while you were there? What were you supposed to look for but didn’t ask further for help? What was some of the things that you wanted but never had accomplished? And also, did any of those things you tried to do changed? I’m not calling you out as bad folks. The bible says judge not. But what I am asking is what have YOU tried to do differently when you were under the membership? Personally I want to know that one. With me, y’all know I’m a 4th Generation UMC Church member right? Said it so many times. My late Great-Grandmother and Grandmother on my mother’s side were charter members. My mother is 3rd Generation. And my church didn’t start in no building. It started in the homes in Black Milwaukee. But during my UMC upbringing, I was in the choir, Sunday School, Conformation class, acted upon as an usher, showcased my gift on the saxophone (still do), and now doing work as a Communications Chairperson in recording sermons, taking pics, got my first job as a summer worker and currently working as Secretary. And keeping with the Facebook users, and Twitter Followers. Overall, I have given 18 years of my church time thus far on Sundays doing these things. In other words, I have worked my way up.
Now many of you are saying, “Oh that’s good. BUT what about outside of the church? Like feedings in all? WHAT ABOUT THE HUNGRY FOLKS? AND THOSE WHO NEED CLOTHES FOR FREE? AND SHELTER? AND PROGRAMS? HMM…….Where are those at? And are they still in tact? I don’t see them here, Godboy.”
In my extended resume, I have helped out in Food givings, prepared clothes for those who needed them to keep warm or the preparation of it. I have participated in watch meetings and block parties. Helped organized special events that are community based in dealing with Domestic Violence Prevention. – In speaking of that, from a UMC perspective, did you know that BOTH the United Methodist Women and United Methodist Men several years ago held a joint partnership in discussing the dangers of Domestic Violence? And also participated in Scholarship Walks to raise money for college students. In which was the same program that helped me to get assisted funds for my college textbooks and supplies. And my church is a member of the organization that is named after Dr. King that is still doing it. Plus also my church does have blood pressure screenings at least once a month after church for those who want to keep up with their health. Even currently honoring Veterans for their service in uniform.
Any other questions folks?
Oh, let’s not forget the activities that are “church influenced” that I am doing, like helping out my High School Alumni Association Board of Directors. Last year, I was selected as Treasurer for Alumni group in which was another first. I am the first 1990′s African-American Male High School Alumnus from my old high school to be selected and serve at this level. Plus I devoted my time at my old high school to go support the current students in sports and events! I even donated to my old high school. Also, I go to my alumni events of College/University and I have donated to the Alumni Association/College Foundation group in support of the current college students for their future scholarships or a new idea to keep the school programs intact! Even becoming an advocate for higher learning! And just to add more fuel to the fire of the haters – I am a City Election Inspector in registering new voters, reactivating old voters, and working the polls on selected Election Day events. And I’ve been doing this since 2006. Even helped out during the Obama Campaign of 2012.
AND GUESS WHAT? Those items I listed above, where do you think I got this influence from? Guess where? One place: the church.
So I have to say that yes many might joke up, display dirty, or call out many things against the church. You know what, let them hate all they want. Let them get this off their chest (if they have a chest period), let them front with words of warning on Social Media. Let them do all they want. Frankly: I DON’T CARE if they boo me at a Wrestling match. Or cheer for me at a class reunion. I DON’T CARE!!!!! I’m still going to remain the game until the race is over! Oh yeah they might front in all. But what happens when all the fun fronting from them is over? What might happen when all of that is dead and done? What happens when that battle is long gone and the church is still standing up in the end?
Let me say it now to be clear, I am not here to make anyone believe anything that I believe. I am not here to make those who go on my twitter timeline each Sunday and view all the excerpts from the sermons I hear. If those want to follow me on twitter each Sunday: @smcclintonjr. And/or look for the hashtags of #rethinkchurch #umc #Milwaukee #Wisconsin. If those don’t want to, they don’t need my approval. Just scroll on. Why the #rethinkchurch hashtag? This is what the UMC is trying to do. Rethink Church. Rethink the ministry. Rethink the use of the church in a new way to get involved in the folks outside looking in. Rethink the attitudes or mindset of those that haven’t been tried or failed to reach. Rethink the objectives and rethink the conclusion to have a new understanding of this message to the masses. Plus this Rethink Church thing should not be a catchphrase. It should be a way of life for everyone in the church each day to try new ways to minister inspirational life. The old ways aren’t working out. It’s time to find THE NEW for THE BETTER. And when that happens, hopefully salvation can be renewed or reformed.
As an example for those who want to view my tweets on Sundays: “We are conquerors! We want to be of the world.”