by Shantelle Slaughter

A script is a very counterfeit way to propose an authentic way of life to someone, especially if your intention is that they follow you down that road in the end. The new series Righteous Gemstones is a striking example of how Christian leaders do not genuinely present Christ to others, and do not behave or even think as they should while following Christ. Although, they make it seem as if they are sincere. When advice of faith is not true, the energy of it will then not reign true in people’s hearts, no matter how real you try to come across as.

This can be found in the opening scene of new television comedy Righteous Gemstones where a preacher and his family corruptly spread their faith, and misuse the word of God. While in a Chinese wave pool, they baptized thousands of people. It quickly changed from a life-changing experience into an argument between the preacher and his adult children about splashing less and how deep underwater to dunk the people. Soon after that ruckus, the wave pool everyone was in somehow turned on, to which the preacher hollered, “What the hell is that?”, and after being answered that someone had turned on the waves he exclaimed, “Well damn it, tell them to to turn them off!”. How casually they were arguing and cursing in a setting that should’ve been sacred and special was disturbing. They did not bring anyone’s attention towards Christ and their new life walking with Him but to the nonsense going on around them. They were symbols of a holy way of life, but their actions and words were not representative of that. In Galatians 6:1, the Lord warned us about this cautioning, “Brothers and sisters, if someone

is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted”. The ceremony is intended to be holy. The derogatory language took the focus off God during the process, making it less binding and meaningful of an experience. The holiness is disregarded, and the beauty becomes absent.

All the same, advising someone to “just pray and your life will turn around”, or “you’ll be fine if you go to church every week!” are empty promises that many Christians repeat. When trying to aid in renovating another’s misused heart, they have to first speak from their own. They have to speak from true testimonies that can be related to or even felt, and not by means of “Christianese”, the use of correct language that sounds good or convincing. That only results in false conversions, because anything started from a lie or the incomplete truth cannot be genuine. They can also lose a lot of individuals who might’ve wanted to be apart of the Christian faith because they will easily catch on to its insincerity and not be swayed to learn anymore about it. It is detrimental to the purpose of being a disciple to Christ in the long run and will push them further away from Him as well by being so pretentious and artificial as leader to others. It unqualifies them and makes them just as ignorant as the next man by being misleading and loose in their “wisdoms” and encouragements.

As someone who wishes to come to Christ, do not feel discomfort by false-converters or swayed to maybe stay away from Christians or God. Instead, continue to seek him out, maybe even find another believer to help you achieve being saved properly. Do not run from the Lord, our spiritual savior and the king of all kings, because of a poor earthly teacher. Even if it takes longer to find your path to Him, He will be there waiting to alter you and your life for the better. His grace and his mercy are a true testament that, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but

everyone to come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). Have you ever heard that slow and steady wins the race? It is more of a marathon than a sprint to find Jesus. On our own time, we will meet him in the way He has already written that it will happen. There is no time limit that we must accept God as your Lord and Savior, it is better to come to Christ at all than to never arrive. In 2 Chronicles 30:9, the Word reminds us that, “For the Lord your God is gracious and compassionate. He will not turn his face from you if you return to him”.

Shantelle Slaughter is Houston native and student-athlete. She majors in Mass Media Arts at HBU.

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