Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Religion & Faith are Personal, not Institutional

So yesterday I saw a "cause" that said: "Put prayer back in schools to show that American people want their rights back to pray and speak out freely about what their faith is..." (sorry the italicized words are ones I corrected for spelling or grammar...)

(Jesus) Then give Caesar what is his, and give God what is his.” Matthew 22:21 

So first of all, Separation of Church & State (SOCS) do not stop a religious person from praying anywhere, or for speaking out about their faith. SOCS goes hand in hand with freedom of religion - meaning people can still pray in school, but it doesn't force a group prayer of one particular religion onto people who may have different beliefs, or aren't religious at all. And it doesn't stop a group of people from one faith from coming together in their school (IE Meet Me at the Pole) and praying together or hosting a club for their faith for people to willingly join.

Prayer should be personal, not institutionalized. Your faith is personal, and your relationship with God is between you and him, not you and your classmates. Christ's covenant in the NT teaches us that our bodies become the temple of Christ. And in this country, we are free from religious persecution - but so are all other religions. We can pray anywhere we sit, stand, crouch, etc... and no one will stop us. There are church's on every corner. In other countries around the world if you don't follow one specified religion and you are caught, you will be put to death - and there are some Christians in this country who would like to see that happen here! We are not the religious minority as many like to think. However, Christians who follow Christ's teachings and don't spend most of their time passing negative judgement on others for their beliefs or lack there of; or trying to get involved politically to enforce their religion as law are the minority in the Christian faith.

 We will not reach non-believers by forcing our religious doctrines (BTW, which one will we choose? Methodist? Baptist? Roman Catholic?) on others... if you want to reach non-believers, get personal with God. Live YOUR life for God. Apply his principals in YOUR life and act on faith. No one comes to the son unless drawn by the father - and God may use you to draw a non-believer to him, but it will be in His time, and he will use you through your actions, not your words. Also, prayer doesn't even have to be out loud... God hears what is not spoken and understands what is not explained. His love does work on the lips or in the mind, but in the heart.

We live in a country where we have every right to exercise our personal beliefs, not be persecuted for those beliefs, nor have other beliefs shoved upon us - and so does everyone else.

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