Christianity has been popping up a lot in my life lately, and not just normal things that I feel comfortable with, but all the different varieties of the religion.
For background, I pretty much grew up Catholic in a Catholic area but have done nearly everything for at least a month on a whim…
I got to look at my friends’ AP history textbook today. It had a large section about the Protestant Reformation in Germany. Apparently, the Catholics were being very corrupt, usual for the time period, and selling time out of purgatory and all sorts of things that cannot actually be sold! (“indulgences”) Somewhat of a joke. And some of the popes and clergy back then were barely even religious, if I am to believe what I was told, and instead, obsessed with the power that came with their office. The general idea seems to be that the world was mostly a huge mess at that point in time.
But Martin Luther came along and revolutionized everything, then John Calvin did as well, and some other German with a name that staring with “Z”, I think. They took things back to where they should be, in my opinion, which is more inside you and less about traditions and fancy, distracting decorations in church.
Around then, in the 1500’s, the Anabaptists started up and thousands of them got killed for believing in their peaceful religion. Too bad. I like them a lot, even though I definitlely understand why few people are into them. Anabaptists eventually turned into the Amish, following Joseph Amman, and other divisions that were usually less conservative, like the Mennonites. Strange thing is that EVERYONE used a horse and buggy back then. They didn’t become Old School until the 1900’s!
After the Protestant Revolution of the 1500’s, people just weren’t ok with the “limited” options available, so they split off into more and more sects… Anglicans, Presbyterians, who knows what. Something for everyone. But not the sense of unity that possibly used to define Christianity beforehand.
All this is just general stuff. I have a pretty good sense of subtle things, though, and I could and probably will go on and on about the small differences I’ve noticed between all these groups.
If you are looking for real fulfillment and contentment, though, all I can say is this:
-Make a lot of sacrifices in your life. Material possessions, harmful behaviors, anything that feels dirty or bad for you.
-Meditate. Really feel things. Enjoy the splendor of nature, the sunsets and sunrises. It’s so amazing, and I feel so privileged to be able to see them.
-Pray a lot. Maybe some rote prayers, but mostly just regular conversations every time you remember.
-Challenge yourself to grow stronger yet more humble and faithful.
Hope you have a beautiful day!