Tuesday, January 11, 2011

When I Was a Child

I don't talk about spiritual things here. But my heart is breaking and I need to feel like someone can hear me outside of myself, so the tears will stop a little.

When I was a child my father taught me to love my neighbor as myself. He taught me not to say mean things about others - "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all". He taught me to be kind to animals, to respect my elders, and to believe in God as I understood God. He never told me what he thought I should believe God to be although there were Bibles in our house, and it was from the Bible that I got my ideas of what God is. I read a lot.

He never told me any one religion was right. He never said anyone else's religion was wrong. He said it was a matter of conscience; we should tolerate the beliefs of others and leave their conscience to themselves, and maybe, if we were lucky, they'd do the same for us. He told me that it was wrong to hate another person because of their religion, their gender or the color of their skin. God, he said, loves everyone. And it's our job to love everyone the best way we can. 

There are some people in Arizona who need to meet my father and other people like him. 

At first I was angry. But that passed and I was just sad. Now all I can do is sit here and cry and wonder at the unmitigated gall of people who do things like this in the name of their god. 

My God said this:

"A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another." (John 13:34, NKJV)

Maybe, really, He is who the people who protest the funerals of nine-year-olds need to meet.

ETA: It has been brought to my attention that the above reference to "meeting" God indicates that I wish terminal harm on the individuals involved in this planned protest. I assure you that nothing could be further from the truth. In fact it is my fervent prayer that they "meet" God well in advance of their physical demise. 


S said...

I hear you. <>

Cathy said...


DataGoddess said...

Those people have been protesting at soldiers' funerals for years now, too. They make me ill.

It brightens my heart to see people who pull together to show the world that those people aren't the way 99.999% of Christians are, and who try to protect the families in those situations from seeing the protest. There is a group of vets who ride motorcycles that will block them from view with their bodies, and drown them out with their engines.

Joy said...

Melissa my father taught me the very things your father taught you. I agree those people make me ill. To protest at the funerals of the SO very innocent people. I pray that one day they will realize the wrong that they do and that they will ask God and the families of all they cause sadness to for forgiveness.

In the mean time I pray for strength for the victims, their families and friends and all that were witness of the tragedy of Saturday. I also pray that something good and gracious comes from this awful tragedy.

God Bless you.

Angela said...

Bless you for saying this. I try to live a good life and agree with everything you've said. It is so terrible to see people behave in that way in the name of a church.