When life gets demanding and I start feeling like an ant under a load, I read the Bible to remember why I do what I do. I’m one of those meticulous people who read the Bible in order cover to cover, and I just finished Matthew. I had an epiphany as I brooded over a grudge against my mother:
Maybe we are a cult.
Hear me out: Jesus was a cult leader. Read the NIV and see past the Bible-sound of it. Consider how ballsy he was to piss off the higher-ups of the church. He flipped tables like he flipped sinners into believers. He called to Simon and Andrew and said, “follow me.“ They dropped everything and left. He called to James and John. Either their boat was docked and they ran down the pier or they dove off and swam. Either way they left Zebedee with the nets and practically said “screw you“.
I think each of the Ladies (including myself) felt like they have said “this life isn’t for me, I’ve found my calling.“
In the article Cult Psychology, the mindset of righteousness that followers felt helped them to move past the scrutiny of outsiders. In Matthew 5:11 Jesus says, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.“ Here we are being sued in court for our desire to love and be loved. My sort-off adopted-father Chris offered to pay for me to go to college in Seattle if I left my family. Bailey was offered art courses in Austin. Alice was offered a mansion and tuition for the kids if she moved to Columbus.
Fine, I give up, we look like a cult. But only if Jesus fits in the definition.