Trespassing on peace?

The following arrived in our inbox as a letter to the editor, and the opportunity of a response should not pass:

“Why do religions thrive in the modern world? Wouldn’t a true religion provide proof that their god is the one to worship? If they could provide this proof, I would understand, but the more the world studies itself, the more we realize that every organized religion is a faunt and a myth and they are allowed to trespass on our peace for reasons I can’t fathom.”  Christan Keith Bowen, Fernandina Beach, FL

 

Dear Christan,

 

Religion is a belief in the creator and supreme being, and the worship of that being through a particular faith.  Christianity believes it is God that we worship.  All of this is based on faith which in the book of Hebrews is defined as the belief in things unseen.  There are many things in this life that depend on faith – because we cannot see it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.  We weren’t around for the Civil War but we believed it happened because of the stories that have been passed through the generations.  The history has been recorded in a number of books.  We weren’t around when God created the earth or when Jesus was born of a virgin but we believe it happened because of the stories that have been passed on by the people who were there.  We have diaries kept by Civil War soldiers to give us a glimpse into history, and writings by the Apostles to put us there when Jesus walked the earth.  The proof that so many seek of God’s existence is obvious to those that do believe because we have faith.  We look at our bodies and the composition and complexity of how it all works together perfectly and seamlessly and by that we are amazed and assured that we were created by hands of God – not a blast or big bang.  The planet earth and the balance of it all, the way the earth rotates, the rise and set of the sun, gravity, the process of life and death and everything in between says to Christians that God was the Creator.  Our proof lies in the writings contained in the Bible and the work we see every day and the artifacts discovered that link to the writings.  Yet, before any of those things were discovered we still believed.

How is organized religion allowed to trespass on your peace?  For Christians, that statement could be turned around.  The unbelievers and their “offense” at religion tramples all over the peace of Christians. But who are we to complain? It presents opportunities like these to answer those questions.  Trespassing on your peace insinuates that we as Christians are disturbing the public in some way.  We don’t broadcast our sermons from loud speakers attached to our churches every Sunday morning.  We don’t drag people off of the streets and into the pews for Sunday service.  We don’t carol our hymns through the streets of your town uninvited.  Prayers are no longer allowed in schools. Really, the only thing we have left is our voice and just like you, we can use our voice to tell our legislators what our opinions are, we can use it to respond to letters like yours, and we can use it in our worship.

We have become a selfish thin-skinned society, where the world and everyone in it must conform to what you believe and behave according to your standards or we threaten to use the word “offended” which will change everything in the snap of a finger.  I’m not offended that you are a non-believer.  I’m not even offended that you would seek proof of God.  So why are you offended that we don’t believe the same as you?  That is what makes up the human race; different beliefs, different skin colors, different philosophies, different education levels, different income levels – we are all different and no two are the same. Differences lead to learning something new about someone or something.  No harm will come to you by learning something new – and no one forces you to believe in something you don’t.   We certainly are not trespassing on your peace – so don’t trample on ours.

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