“Me-ism”: Tailoring Religion to Fit Your Needs

I never wanted to be a tailor, probably because I am afraid of needles. But I can imagine that having clothes that fit perfectly is pretty comfortable. (A tailored suit has some appeal to me, even if I’ll probably never own one.) That is probable true when it comes to clothes, electrical gadgets, and ordering your food just the way you like it. The bottom line is we like things to be customizable to suit our needs (pun intended).

Think about it: we customize our phones, our computers, our desktop, our cars…but what about our theology? How much do we adjust our view of God to meet our perceived needs?

The Rise of “Me-isms” – Personally Tailored Religions

We must remember that God’s infinite nature is sufficient and that we don’t need to customize him to ourselves; instead, we need to see how we can change.

I read a recent article in USA today entitled, “More Americans tailoring religion to fit their needs.” In it George Barna was quoted as saying, “America is headed for 310 million people with 310 million religions.” Based on his statistics, he sees people acknowledging God and the Bible, but believing whatever they want.

In the article, a book is referenced where a person referred to her religion/theology as Sheila-ism, as her name happened to be Sheila. She very candidly said, “I listen to my own little voice.”

So I’m Not Nuts. But Am I Still Guilty?

I wonder how often I do that. Probably more often than I would like to admit. Sure, I’m not about to start my own religion bearing my name complete with t-shirts, but inside my heart, how often is that false religion the motivation of my actions and thoughts?

Jeremiah 2:11 comes to mind. It states, “For my people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, to hew for themselves cisterns, broken cisterns that can hold no water.”

God’s people tend to forsake him, and create their own “cisterns” or sources of refreshment, pleasure, and provision; and the sad thing is that we forsake the dynamic omnipotence of the true God that can address each and every real and perceived need we may have. We pursue “cisterns” that we made ourselves, so we think they will suit us perfectly, but in fact they can’t hold water.

God has revealed himself, and part of trusting him is believing that he as our creator knows us better than we know ourselves. We must remember that his infinite nature is sufficient and we don’t need to customize him to ourselves; instead, we need to see how we can change.

Dustin Folden
Pastor Dustin Folden and his wife Trisha joined the Pastoral Staff in 2010. They have two children, Sawyer and Mackenna who absolutely love children’s ministries, mostly because of the singing and snacks. Pastor Folden shepherds the 9:30 worship service, oversees the Adult Bible Fellowship ministry, as well as serves in the Biblical Counseling Ministries.