Religion or Relationship? Which is it? For many, it is a religion. For me and countless others, it's a relationship. For those who aren't familiar with either, it's ridiculous and meaningless. Most learn about their faith when they're children, and some when they're teens and a few when they're adults. Most people who learn when they're children rekindle their faith when they are adults or they eliminate it. Understanding what religion is all about depends on the person. Are you engaging in a religious affair for the look of it? Or are you engaging because you want to change within? If it's for an outward effect, then it would certainly be a religion. When it's personal, regarding intimate issues, then it's a relationship.
Religion follows the protocol and procedures or rules of the faith. Individuals will follow all the ritualistic praying, meetings, and adhere to the appearance of it, rather than sincerely engage. When a relationship is involved, appearance doesn't matter because it's personal, and it's intimate. When we ask ourselves, what or why, we did or said something, and then feel ashamed or embarrassed, or even humiliated, that's personal. Those issues aren't taken lightly by the individual, usually, it's something that compels them to change.
For myself, I felt misunderstood and wanted in-depth conversations. Conversations where people weren't afraid of the ugly or scary in life. I wanted conversations that weren't based upon the previously established idea of how-to or what-to, for anything. For example, I don't believe that only children can change, because while we're alive, each of us can make a choice to change or not. Each situation depends on the individual. There were two common responses I received in conversation. One was, "Woah, that's deep" and the other was, "You're crazy!" After hearing those often, I stopped attempting conversation, and for years I stayed quiet and listened. During the quiet years is when Jesus decided to take my hand and introduce himself. From that point on, Jesus and I grew to know one another, or better said, I grew to know Jesus.
Relationship or religion? It's up to the individual. You can put on a front and play ritual games or you can take the time to have a relationship. When Jesus came here, he came to abolish religion. Jesus abhors religion! Just so you know, Jesus sincerely desires a relationship with you. If you want it, and it's okay if you don't.
For me, having a relationship with Jesus saved my life, and it also cost me friends and family members too. They didn't understand the changes I was going through, and it was difficult to explain it to them. Not everyone you meet or know wants to see you do well or better. One of the sad realities in life. As I've grown in maturity in my relationship with Jesus, I've discovered that many people suffer harshly, internally, because they can't have intimate conversations about themselves without being judged or mistreated. Therefore, for me, having a relationship with Jesus saved my life and I suspect for many others also. What faith means to me is a relationship, not a religion. Hopefully, this post opened your eyes to a perspective that you hadn't known. Maybe you might want that relationship too. Until next time, stay well and enjoy life!
His Peace & His Love Always!