I just got through watching a live ustream posted by @manorton on twitter for what seems to be an online worship service called Redeemed Point. They had people playing music and then I guess a pastor come on and give a quick sermon. This one was about Christmas and the true meaning of the holiday.
I thought it was kind of neat watching a very intimate sermon via live streaming. The weird thing of course is that I’m atheist but for some reason, I have this really strong fascination with sermons. I especially like to listen to or watch sermons done by smaller churches and services. I hate those big tv production ones or the mainstream churches. Usually big productions lack a lot of the intimacy and relate-ability of the message I enjoy about these smaller ones.
I’ve had my issues with Christianity in the past, especially as I was coming out as an atheist. However, over the years, there is something I still really am drawn to about the Christian worship. A lot of the teachings are solid. They are about respect for family, empathy for your fellow man, and the beauty of community.
After you move away from home, you are basically on your own when it comes to guidance. Hell, even most parents today don’t offer up the needed thumping you expect from traditional teachings. No one wants to be the bitch. While, I don’t agree with a lot of the Christian philosophies at times, I still appreciate a great deal of the idea of community leadership and guidance. I definitely feel lost at times, not really sure if I’m a part of anything anymore.
However, when I listen to a few small sermons nowadays (South Lake Presbyterian Church podcast), it is quite pleasant to hear the global themes of our modern social morals reiterated. Where else do you find such community and guidance today? I’m not sure.
A lot of atheists kind of see this as ridiculous I’m sure. The newage atheists tend to define atheism as a cult of anti-religion where I simply see it as a singular definition of the lack of belief in a god or gods. I also don’t tolerate general ignorance when it comes faith guided hatred or bigotry either. But for some reason, I’m able to appreciate the most of the teachings of Christ without actually believing in God. Social morality is huge in my book and I think all communities benefit from having it as backbone…and quite frankly, I don’t really see government leaders, community leaders, or any other organized group in our society pushing to keep it strong except churches (regardless of what their motivations might be).