Jesus and I, we’re cool.
I may not clasp my hands and close my eyes to talk to him every night like I’m willing to bet a good number of people do in the upper Midwest, but I follow the golden rule, consider myself a good person and really try not to get in the way of those who identify themselves Christian, or any particular religion for that matter.
That being said, I would hope the respect is reciprocated with my identity as a non-religious, agnostic individual.
To me, there’s nothing worse than a conversation with an insulting and judgmental religious person. I understand that this topic is delicate and vulnerable, quite literally a life-and-death matter, but you getting offended and sensitive is not going to help me understand your perspective.
I’m not trying to stump you and spitefully drag you away from your beliefs; I simply want to hear your side, and that means a debate may need to ensue in order to quench my curiosity.
Don’t get me wrong, the intention for those who outwardly spread their faith is good. Religious outreach, at least what I’ve experienced thus far, is positive for the growth of a religion and generally harmless in nature, a way to introduce an otherwise ignorant person to this new way of life.
To be clear this is not an article to debate the religious question, that’s for a different time and place. And, quite frankly, you could worship a bag of fish for all I care, just don’t get offended if I choose a different belief concerning the order of existence.
My good friend is a lovely Christian lady who is an active member in her church and is not afraid to defend her beliefs. What makes our friendship durable is the mutual respect we give each other for our differentiating practices of faith (or lack thereof).
Our religious debates are healthy and nonjudgmental. These are the things that aren’t taught in school or places of worship. These conversations with thought-out questions and retaliatory explanations from a respected peer are so significant for personal growth when discussing and pondering any topic.
Everyone is on their own path in figuring out who they are and what they believe at any age of life. Don’t feel obligated to worship something or someone in order to follow the norm or because it’s what your parents practice.
Do your research to gain some peace of mind, and hopefully you will be met with respect and understanding from both your religious and non-religious acquaintances with your own formulated conclusions.