Saturday, December 22, 2007

Good thing my pulpit didn't have time to get dusty.

Before I begin my rant, please understand that when I speak about my faith, it is what I believe and how I expect myself to live. People, by nature and by God's plan, are free to exercise their free will in their lives. I exercise my free will by trying my best to live in the manner expected...sometimes my best isn't all that great, though. :)

Today, I was visiting a business that I visit quite often, and I left really offended. First, you do not mock the resurrection of my Lord, but I'll get to that one, later.

While I was at this business, the person with whom I do business was talking about the holidays and her family. This person, not of my faith, married someone of my faith. Now, what they want to do is up to them. However, that is not a license for this person to find fault with my faith because he/she is not of it.

When this person was engaged/dating his/her future spouse, the difference in religion didn't matter. However, since the arrival of a baby, it seems to matter to the families involved. While the spouse is ok with raising the child the other spouse's religion, the extended family has issues. Understandable, but again, the couple made those choices and they have to deal with the family issues.

The person with whom I was conducting business with then went on to mock the idea that Jesus was resurrected. That's what really made me angry. In fact, if it had been a situation where I could have just walked out, I would have.

It has been bothering me most of the day, really.

I'm ok with people not having the same faith as me. We all have the choice to believe what we believe. However, don't knowingly create a situation that can turn into problems down the road and expect an easy time of it AND then, sit there and mock something you don't put yourself in that situation.

What I started thinking about, though, was this person's spouse. Obviously, choosing to be of my faith by distinction only, and not in action. Is that person's road easier? Harder? What heaviness of heart with regard to his/her faith is noticed or ignored?

I lived a life of compromise and turning my back on my faith for many years. One night, while in one of my usual haunts, I started thinking about my faith and the compromises I had made. Maybe hoping for acceptance and to not be lonely. (After many years of trying to prove how bad I could be--made fun of a lot as a young kid for my strong beliefs in God.)

I sat there, drinking, smoking, and taking in my environment in a way that I had not, ever. Something seemed to invade my heart and thoughts--no, it wasn't the beer. I started to realize that if I wanted to be happy and to not feel compromised, but to feel free to express my faith, I had to change. It wasn't a matter of rejecting God anymore, it was for me to accept Him.

That was almost 16 years ago. Do I struggle? Yes. Do I walk a fine line at times? Yup. However, I am a strong believer (from experience and observation) that following God's word works.

Again, I'm not perfect by any stretch of the imagination and it has been some time since I've been to church. (Hoping to go tomorrow, though.) I've also been quite hurt by other Christians. Not because of anything God did, but because of their own actions. Again, it all has to go back to God and following His will for our lives.

That takes me back to the spouse of the person with whom I did my business. I wonder how that person feels when Christianity is mocked? When that person's child is not allowed to partake in the traditions that person experienced?

I can't imagine being in a relationship that wouldn't allow me to express my faith, practice it, and to not have someone to pray with or worship God with...That's what changed my heart 16 years ago.

I hope their relationship works out, but the spouse doesn't seem to mind, so it probably will.

It just worked me up a bit, though.

The passage I've added is simply saying that if you go into relationships with unbelievers, no good can come from it. I'm sure there are legalistic ways to interpret this passage; however, my belief is simple: You compromise your faith within your family and it creates chaos for the harmony of the marriage and for any offsrping that result. But that is, of course, without someone compromising one's faith.

I realize this is a touchy subject. Again, these are my beliefs. If you don't feel the same as me, fine. That is your choice and you are welcome to it. Really.

II Corinthians 6:14-18
14 Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?
15 What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever?
16 What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."
17"Therefore come out from them
and be separate, says the Lord.
Touch no unclean thing,
and I will receive you."
18"I will be a Father to you,
and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty."

Thank you for reading this rather long post. I hope it made some sense.


USA_Admiral said...

It does seem to get harder everyday with the all out assault on Christianity.

God Bless You.

RT said...

Yeah, I didn't even talk about having to "endure" Christmas songs everywhere she went.

Old NFO said...

Welcome to the PC world RT, it is okay to bash Christianity, since that is the WASP religion, but don't you DARE say a word crosswise about MY religion...
You were much nicer than I would have been, I would have called her on it, made my point and would never darken their doorstep with my business again.

Wyatt Earp said...

It's funny when Pagans fight it out amongst themselves.

Bawahahahahahahahah! I'm going to Hell.

RT said...

I would had to leave with wet nail polish on my toes and foil in my hair. I needed to watch myself, or I would have ended up with a mohawk or something. I'm thinking of changing haridressers, though.

I'm going to heaven. Hope to see you there.