thread: 2007-01-04 : Self-identification vs. Membership

On 2007-01-12, xenopulse wrote:

Brand, Sydney,

Our Christian backgrounds must be quite different. My church was a solemn place, one of humility. It wasn't dark or sinister; but "happiness" had no place there. Sure, we would sing songs about God being love, and giving us shelter and hope, but it wasn't the cheerful kind of happiness there, it was calm, respectful, and humble, ultimately based on being awed by the Greatness of God.

In fact, when I went back a few years ago with my father, after my grandmother died, they actually had musicians in the church, with drums and guitars and so on. It was an attempt to make the service more "modern." At the end of the performance, people applauded.

My dad and I are not religious people. But we were appalled.

Applauding in church? That just felt wrong. So wrong that, even though I'm not a believer, I visibly cringed. I'm not sure I can explain this properly, but you shouldn't applaud people in God's place. It's there for us to be humble. Not unhappy or miserable, but just ... not focusing on any of those earthly things.

So yeah. That just to give you the basis for my background.

To tie this in with what I said earlier: It's okay to appreciate God's earthly gifts. It's not okay to ask for more. That's not humble, it's not respectful, it's not what prayer is for. If there's anything to pray for, even for other people, it's to ask God to take care of their souls and to express your Faith that He is doing whatever is in His plan.

Another aspect to this is this: We've been given the mission to take care of the needy, to share, to love our enemies, to shed wealth. So whenever I see someone who's rich thank God for their fortune, while they enjoy a life of luxury, I want to wring their necks (which, I know, is not very loving of me). Celebrities do this all the time, and again, it's appalling.


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