SPEAKING HER TRUTH: Nicole Robinson
Q:How did you develop the concept behind the book?
A: I have been through a lot in my life at 23 years old. I have always wanted to write a book, but I didn't know what I was going to write about. I was at home with my aunt one night and I was brainstorming about things I had been through and I said to my aunt, let's talk about the church. My aunt said,"Yes, let's talk about the church."
Q: Growing up in Jamaica, how would you describe the church culture and how it positively and negatively affected you're upbringing?
A: I was born in Jamaica but migrated to England when I was six years old. My very first encounter with church was when I used to attend with my great grandmother. I learnt about Jesus, that He is the son of the true and living God, the ten commandments, and the books of the bible. At a very young age, I had what you could almost describe as an obsession with wanting to know who was Jesus.
As with most children in Jamaica, church for me was very much like Sunday School. I had a very inquisitorial mind and wanted to know everything there was to know about Jesus Christ. I would ask questions like, why would he die for our sins? and how I could be his friend because of how they treated him before his crucifixion. However, I would definitely say that my first encounter with church in Jamaica had a positive impact on my upbringing because it birthed a desire to know who Jesus is.
Q: What do you hope readers will take away from reading Let's Talk About The Church?
A: I hope that readers with first and foremost take away that they should have a personal relationship with God and not the pastors. You will go through things in the church because the Bible also says that the judgement first starts in the house of God. At the same time if you have a relationship with God even if the church hurts or gives you wrong instructions, you will know and stand against it.
Q: How does the church culture in Jamaica and England differ in your opinion?
A: It was not until I came to England that I experienced the negative side to it. The church culture in Jamaica was one where people identified you with being Christian byour appearance: you had to have natural hair, wear long skirts, not pierce your ears or wear earrings. For a lot of individuals in Jamaica, they looked at holiness as being part of poverty.
Church culture in England on the other hand, had a lot to do with money, and spiritual direction.
Q: It's mentioned in the book that you were kicked out of church. How did that experience affect you, and how did that strengthen your relationship with God opposed to turning away from him?
A: When I got kicked out of church I was so broken because I could not understand how the pastor, who God allowed to shepherd His sheep, could kick me out of the house of God, all because I was defending my mother. This really hurt me because if you're meant to be preaching the word of God and this is the example that you have set, then this was more than a shock. I was devastated.
In the end, being kicked out of the church has strengthened my relationship with God because it gave me more of an urge to want to understand more about Him. I wanted to really know if God was good or evil. The Bible said to come as you are. I came how I was and I was kicked out. This made me want to find out if this was really God or was it the people.
Q: What were some of the issues you faced in the church that many people experience today?
A: The reality of the matter is that there are issues in the church and I faced a number of them. I have no doubt that many other people are also experiencing some or all of these issues. The issues I faced in the church included: jealousy, hypocrisy, back-biting, deception, manipulation, wrong spiritual direction, misusing God’s name to name a few.
Q: What advice would you give to those who are in a similar position to where you were?
A: My advice to others would be to trust God no matter what! Trust God, pray, believe in having a personal relationship with God.
Nicole Robinson's 'Let's Talk About The Church will be available to purchase on Amazon and at all book stores on 30 April 2017
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