“This Ain’t No Country Club” excerpted from Nathan C. Walker (2014) Exorcising Preaching: Crafting Intellectually Honest Worship. St. Louis: Chalice Press.
There is no time to be spinning around ourselves saying,
“We’re so small. We’re a minority religion.”
As if “minority” is somehow equivalent to “inferior.”
No. The real problem is when we
diminish our institutional self-worth
by trying to be a country club religion.
Who else here is tired of being
internally focused and
preoccupied with matters
that are inherently irrelevant?
“Where’s my coffee?
And why are those curtains crooked,
and can you believe he wore that,
and do you know what she said,
that she said that she did,
what he said he would do, but didn’t do?
And where’s my Splenda?”
Preoccupations with idle chatter
are a kind of self-poisoning.
We should excommunicate such petty banter.
It is time that we become a part of a
progressive, visionary path
that liberates future generations
from the theological labyrinth of despair.
It is time that we have the courage to
transform from this social club
into a collective force for justice.
Because we ain’t no country club.
We ain’t no intellectual secret society,
and we ain’t no navel-gazing hum-diddy-dum cult.
We are an intentionally diverse community.
We are a group of people who
seek to lead meaningful lives,
to love one another without prejudice, and
to build a just and sustainable world.
Let’s inject this mission into our DNA
and, once and for all, get out of the
committees and into the streets!