|View single post by booklover|
|Posted: Thu Aug 23rd, 2007 04:11 pm||
I appreciate your comments. Even though I doubt I will ever call myself a Christian, I try to maintain an open mind with people who are, because I know that to paint all Christians as zealous and judgmental is intellectually dishonest. As I said, there were people who helped my family after my father's death. Many of those same people helped my mother after her cancer diagnosis as well. Whether they helped because of their faith or simply because they were good people I'm not sure. But unfortunately those people seem to get pushed aside because of the attitude of those who are judgmental. Somewhere I read that the church was the only organization that shoots it own wounded,which at times seems true. Let me give you an example. The church I was associated with had a minister who was a very good man. He lived his Christianity and even though I disagreed with many of the doctrinal stands he took, I could see that he honestly and sincerely tried to help people.
After he left that church and went to another, he was discovered to have gay pornography on his computer at work. Apparently when he was the minister of the church I attended he was arrested in another city for propositioning an undercover officer, but thanks to the intervention of a preacher at a mega-church there, he was released into that man's custody and no one ever found out about it. He was fired from the church he was preaching at, and then entered a program that supposedly tries to "cure" someone of homosexuality. This man, who even though my mother didn't go to his church until several years later, was there in 1981 when Mom faced surgery to have a benign tumor taken off her thyroid gland. I'll never forget that simple act of kindness because it calmed my mother's fears considerably.
Yet after all this came to light, many people from that church (including, I'm sorry to say, some of my own family) forgot all the good he had done for the church and the community and turned against him simply because he preferred to have sex with another man. Now if he owed an apology to anyone, it was his to his wife for misleading her about his sexuality, but it was not the business of anyone else. I don't want to get into a discussion about whether homosexuality is innate or learned behavior, but I will say that at no point did I ever choose to be heterosexual. I have always found myself attracted to women, so I think the inverse might be possible for another person. Where is the justice in this? Do you really think God cares about someone's sexuality or how much they try to spread his word?
So if you get comfort from your faith and feel like it gives you a solid path for you and your family to live, that's wonderful. To paraphrase Voltaire, I may not agree with you, but I'll fight to the death for your right to believe and to practice whatever it is you believe. I, however, get comfort from listening to a sonata from Mozart or from stretching my mind by learning something I didn't know before or from the simple act of being kind to those here with me. I don't need a book that I believe to be full of myths and contradictions to tell me how to live. I'm certainly not perfect and even though I've never intentionally set out to deceive anyone, I know I've done things that are wrong. In the end, however, the only person I have to account to is my fellow man.