• Dana L. Butler

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When I say I’m a Christian, please don’t assume I’m a fundamentalist. When I say I love Jesus, please, please know that I’m not out to judge you for your choices or lack thereof. When I say I’m a Christian, please know that I’m a proponent of accepting help for a mental illness that comes in the form of pills. I am by no means one of those “if you’d pray harder or have more faith Jesus would take your depression away” kind of Christians.

When I say I’m a Christian, I want you to know I don’t interpret scriptures like “take up your cross” or “I am crucified with Christ” or the idea of laying down one’s life for the Gospel — all very important scriptures/concepts to me — to mean that you should become a doormat, allow yourself to be used, abused, manipulated, controlled. No. Just no.

When I say I’m a Christian, I don’t want that to ever, ever equate to tossing out platitudes here there and everywhere, like bandaids over gaping, painful wounds. When I say I’m a Christian, I don’t mean I believe if you’re really spiritual you won’t hurt, grieve, be angry at injustice (injustice across the country or the globe or in your own home, within your relationships).

When I say I’m a Christian, I want you to know that I don’t believe “trusting God” equates to never wrestling over hard questions. No. What I do believe? Is that the willingness to wrestle over the hard stuff — that’s often where God meets us the most deeply.

What I do believe

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