So it is Monday morning – the day my Sunday gears change to Monday gears which then prevail all through the week. I always shift gears on Monday, to a more pragmatic me from the ‘faith full’ person I am on Sunday! What do I mean with this mambo jumbo I am writing you could ask? Indulge me with a few minutes of your time and you will then understand what I am saying.
I had initially decided that I was not going to write about the body of Christ in this blog. I was going to be neutral; I was not going to share my allegiances. After all this blog is about being a Kenyan right. Oh but I have changed my mind. Thank God this is a blog, only here can I change my mind without having to think I am confusing my readers or followers as word press would have me call my readers.
So I will write about my faith. Infact, shame on me for having thought otherwise!
We are a religious lot
Last week I wrote about how I am a Kenyan, well that was a half-baked truth. I am a Christian first. This Kenyan thing, much as I love it cannot be compared to who I really am, a Christian. A born again Christian, by God’s grace.
Now that I think about it, I did what most of us Kenyans will do. We separate our faith from our ‘real lives’. It is said that 85% of the population in Kenya is made up of Christians. According to a survey conducted by The Pew Research Center, a US-based organization dealing in religious research, Kenyans are ranked 11th in Africa and 16th in the world on the most religious people, with nearly nine in every 10 people stating that religion plays an important role in their lives.
But do this nice sounding statistics matter in this our nation, a resounding no. Infact, according to this same research, a quarter of Kenyans believe in witchcraft even though they are deeply religious. But then again you do not need a research organisation to tell you this; we already know this to be true.
There are two types of Kenyans. One is my kind – those that think of themselves as ‘good’ Christians. We try to do good most of the time, sometimes we fail but we try. We want our lives to reflect that Christ lives in us. We want our lives to be pleasing to God. However, all these thoughts and ‘good’ deeds are done privately, in secret in fact is the right word. Almost like we have something to hide; almost like we are embarrassed of the gospel.
As a result, on Sunday we are hyped Christians, in love with their Maker, we can even shout this at the top of our voices and often we do.
Then Monday happens and from then to Saturday, much as we are still in love with Christ, we want to do this secretly. So in our workplaces you will never find us talking about our faith or standing up for what is right. We even excuse it for not wanting to offend others. We hide. We are the ones who Christ asks of what use is light if after lighting a lamp, we then hide it or puts it under a basket.
A lamp should be placed on a stand, where its light can be seen by all who enter the house. And I am not talking about us needing to beat our chests for the world to see we are Christians, no I am attempting to make a case for us allowing the light to shine, no need to hide it.
I ticked that box
So that is the first kind of Kenyan. The second one is the one who Sunday is just about ticking another box called religion. Then Monday to Saturday they are back to doing their own things with little reverence for Christ. Monday to Saturday has absolutely nothing to do with them being Christians.
Yes by name they believe they are Christians and will therefore contribute to our inflated Christian numbers, and if you speak to them you no doubt will know that they believe in Christ; but that is where it ends.
If you go to their offices or businesses, you will not find anything to do with Christ in their practices. They are the first to take or give bribes. They will not be caught obeying traffic rules leave alone being considerate of others at their workplaces. Imagining that they can help the needy or poor would be stretching it too far.
The other day I was doing a transaction in a government office and I struggled to get anyone to serve me, you know your typical government office where your best bet at fast service is by paying a bribe. As I sat there and looked at all the employees, I knew without a doubt there were many Christians in this office. Infact I bet many of these Christians are born again, maybe even in the church choir, or some other ministry. But where were they now? Why were they not the ones leading by example? Doing their work as if they were doing it for God? Where were these Christians?
Serious church goers
So if you ever wonder how this country has some of the highest numbers of Christians and yet the least impact from this fact, remember us, these two types of Kenyans. Christians by name but our lives have nothing to do with His name.
Infact, I am convinced that in this country we abuse the use of ‘I am a Christian’. We need to be saying we are church goers and not that we are Christians, and there is a very big difference between these two.
I believe that as a nation we are schooled to be church goers. Even in the worst families, you are likely to find parents pushing their children to church. Unfortunately, this then becomes just something we do as a pastime.
Yes I bet you went to church yester, and if you belong to church like mine you probably left feeling blessed. But today is Monday. Reality check is back till next Sunday.
I have yet another dream
I have a dream, when Christians will take their place in society. Where we will all stand as the Christians we are and be counted. I have dream, when the society will know and see the difference between Christians and non-Christians, there will be a markable difference.
I chose to declare that I am a Christian; I chose to live as a Christian. I believe the Kenya I want can only be realized if we Christians stand and be counted. Where we will fearlessly influence our workplaces for Christ, our families, our friends; where we will live Christ’s teaching in all we do.