Friday, January 27, 2012

Oy Vey

Here's the thing.  Religion is SO important when you are young.  All the big questions ultimately seem to boil down to, "If God is good, why do so many bad things happen?"
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And the whiplash that the question brings leads to righteous anger or righteous resolve.  Either way, it is a big deal.  Maybe the biggest.  You're a teenager!  You will NOT be subject to this hypocrisy!  You can AND WILL do something about it!
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Then we get older.
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Turns out that religion is just a nice way to stay in tough with the community and friends.  A chance to dress well on Sundays, see friends and hopefully do good for others.  A child, or a hundred children or ten thousand children starving in Africa aren't God's fault.  It may be no one's fault.  But churches often try to make the lives of the less fortunate better.  Good for them.
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I remember being as indignant as this girl about religion.  I would have probably complained about the School Prayer as well.  I could quote all the evil that organized religion does, and the foresight our fore-fathers had in separating it from governmental support and oversight.
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But, with age comes - if not wisdom - at least tolerance.  You could replace the "Heavenly Father" in that prayer with "Meditate Daily" or "Thoughts to Guide You" and it isn't offensive at all.
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This isn't a "War on Christians", it is a kid - full of righteous anger.  And, God willing, if we are all lucky, she will turn that righteous anger into a desire to do good in the future.  Possibly through her community, friends and maybe even her church.

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