Spoiler alert: If you want to try guessing the meaning behind my symbolic short story The Museum for yourself, please go there now before you continue reading.
Still here? Then here we go.
The museum represents Christianity. Each wall symbolizes a different denomination. The paintings featured on each wall represents a central focus of that denomination based on my observations when visiting different denominations over the years.
The first wall is Catholicism with their main focus on the Eucharist.
The second wall is Baptist with their main focus on the Bible.
The third wall is Assembly of God and Pentecostal with their enthusiastic worship services. The different languages spoken by the people gathered there represents their belief in tongues.
The fourth wall is the Seventh Day Adventist with their focus on following the laws, especially the Sabbath.
The fifth wall is nondenominational churches – the swirls representing the freedom from traditional denominational boundaries.
The groups of people in front of each painting are the ones that have been drawn to that particular denomination based on likes, dislikes, needs, as well as other factors. Just like people have different personalities, denominations also have different personalities. And when people find the one that fits them the best, the one that meets their needs the best, they stay there.
The people still walking around the room are Christians who are still searching for their church home, and non-Christians exploring Christianity.
How close was your guess?
I know some people won’t agree with me, but I believe, for the most part, that having different denominations is a good thing. I think it’s quite possible that God may be behind the formation of many of the denominations that exist today. There are reasons why I believe this, but I won’t get into that now.
I’m aware that having different denominations is confusing to non-Christians. But I believe that’s because of how we Christians have handled it. If we really respected each other, and didn’t try to steal each other’s members – but instead worked together to point non-Christians to Jesus, then helped them find their right fit regardless of whether it’s in our own denomination or not, I think we would be amazed at the result.