Saturday, August 04, 2007

Believing in love, goodness, redemption … & Lenny Bruce

This was inspired by a comment I recently received that left me very … sad. Let me begin by proudly stating I am a Christian. I believe that God gave His Son for our sins, and that I can look forward to redemption and Heaven. My God is a God of love.

There is a trend through the blogosphere, and in politics, to dwell on punishment/sin aspect of Christianity. I know I'm a sinner. I also know that God recognizes, even expects this, and understands when I repent. I'm forgiven. I take terrific solace in that.

As my minister tells me, "God doesn't expect you to succeed. He expects you to try." And so I try to be a good Christian and a good American by making animal rights, children's rights and the care of homeless and hungry my personal priority. I work hard at being a good daughter and a good friend. That's how I express my Christianity and try to live a blessed life.

If a woman wants to have an abortion, that's between her, her doctor and God. I personally am appalled by the people kept alive in a vegetative state by machines when I believe God clearly wishes their lives over -- but, like abortion, that is a highly personal decision to be made by each individual after consulting with doctors and, most of all, God. For while I love God, I also believe in our great American heritage, which gives each of us the right to worship (or not worship) as we choose. So I believe that, for the most part, people can, should and must be left to make their own personal decisions on highly personal matters.

That's because, while I understand about original sin, I try to believe most of us are good at heart and that, as my minister says, we do try. For me, that's as much a cause to celebrate as Eternal Life. The "hell, fire and brimstone" God I hear about is not my God. As Lenny Bruce once said, "If Christ had been killed in the 20th century, all those parochial school kids would be wearing little electric chairs around their necks." Funny, but that profane Jewish comic's joke crystalizes my faith for me. Yes, Jesus was crucified, but let's not forget to celebrate that then he ROSE.

And this is all why I believe politics in the country MUST become more secular. I don't believe that a lie about oral sex and quid pro quo is more "sinful" than lies about press leaks or the lead up to war. I don't believe that abortion is more "sinful" than letting school children go hungry or undereducated. These beliefs are rooted in my Christian faith, which is just as valid as anyone else's. Though somehow, over the last few years, other people's Christianity has been legislated, much to my chagrin.

Do not bother responding that my faith is "wrong." You cannot possibly know that. You can only know that it doesn't jibe with yours. If you insist on doing so, your comment will be deleted.

Because while I acknowledge sin and sacrifice, I choose to celebrate love, redemption and goodness. And I got that from my Lord. Lenny just kinda articulated it for me.