Welcome to Christ the King Sunday. OK, so it’s a modern holy day with not much theological precedent, but it does say something audacious about our faith. In the midst of a democracy that prizes (at least in theory) individual freedom and initiative in all things, we proclaim primary allegiance to an absolute monarch. How’s that for anachronistic thinking?
I was counseling a prospective Christian years ago back in NYC. She liked everything Christianity offered, but bolted when we got to the idea of a God that was not democratically elected and periodically subject to individual review and approval. It was more than she could take. It’s more than a lot of regular pew sitters can take as well. They are content with a God preached to them in terms they agree with, and that’s all. And they are very uncomfortable with a God who is our absolute monarch but insists on remaining a holy mystery, and a faith that requires us to muddle through, following as best we can where Christ has led, even if we don’t fully understand where we are going and are not entirely sure that our own judgments are correct.
To me, all of this is the great and good news, but I am witness to how that is not always the case. I find the alternative unpalatable at best. I don’t understand a religion built around the idea of a democratic God of my choice in whom I can place my clear, definitive, black and white ideas of good and bad and call it orthodoxy.