Can Religion be Redeemed?

Elizabeth Park
5 min readMar 20

Is it even worth discussing?

Photo by Ric Rodrigues:

For the busy people, let me shortcut it for you. No. Needs to be scrapped and reborn, basically.

Here’s what God said about it in Amos 5:

I hate, I despise your feasts,
and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies.
Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings,
I will not accept them;
and the peace offerings of your fattened animals,
I will not look upon them.
Take away from me the noise of your songs;
to the melody of your harps I will not listen.
But let justice roll down like waters,
and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.

I have to admit it.

I tried church. Again. I did this awhile back and wrote about it here.

I tried again a few months ago but left early when I realized what the message was about: “Life After LGBT [sic]”. Just no.

The show “Greenleaf” grabbed my attention a few weeks ago, and I binged it. Hard.

If you didn’t see it, it’s about a preacher’s daughter coming home to her father’s church after 20 years away. It’s warm, messy, real, dramatic, soapy, and toxic, and I couldn’t quit it.

As a preacher’s daughter myself (he just died in January, and I haven’t written about it yet), especially one who doesn’t attend church, it had my attention. The show nailed the issues. But it also reminded me how DAMN MUCH I miss having that sense of community, of people who “know you” and who “care”. I have those quotes there on purpose. If you know, you know.

This church I tried — I liked so much about it, but I felt myself slipping back into the religion trap. I found myself spotting the leadership, checking out the worship team, wondering if they would like me, wondering where I could fit in and make a difference. I tried to hide at the same time I hoped someone would SEE me, and CARE. As a single person, it’s unlikely; but as a divorced single, it’s even less likely.

I went hard for three weeks, including the daily open prayer sessions. It was during the time of the Asbury revival, and I could feel a bit of it that first Sunday. They were off-script, raw, real, passionate. They even seemed to be hearing from God personally, which I’m super into.

Elizabeth Park

Life coach for the spiritually dehydrated, survivors of narcissistic abuse, and neurodivergent