Religion has always been very personal for me. I had no choice. God pulled me close to him out of the midst of cynical unbelievers. There was no support, no encouragement, no help. Instead there was enough ridicule and taunting to last a lifetime. But I am not complaining. There is something to be said for making God “all yours” and not let the world around you – Christian or otherwise – interfere.
I can’t say that I had a close or even comfortable relationship with God at that point. It was more a relationship of awe, admiration and a healthy dose of fear. The closer, more personal tie to God came much later and with the help and guidance of believers around me.
It is true that in order to grow and mature in faith, you need fellowship with believers who are further along on their walk with Christ than you are. But to get started and to build a foundation on faith and faith alone does have one incredible advantage: from the very beginning my faith has been about me and the Lord, nothing more and nothing less.
When people say that the Christian church in the US in under attack, I cannot relate. When people are upset that prayer disappeared from the public schools, I don’t see why that matters. And when the newspapers are full of stories of whether or not a statue of the Ten Commandments should be on display in a federal building, I honestly could not care less. My faith has never depended on outside issues like that. It makes absolutely no difference to me whether or not the dollar bill tells me that “In God We Trust”. And the fact that my kids are not in contact with religion at school is just fine with me. While it is sad that they are not taught about the God that I love, it also means that they are not taught about an image of God I entirely disagree with.
A teacher once told me that about half of what I want my children to know comes from school, the other half must come from home. The trick is to know which half is being covered and then fill in the gaps. Faith in God is much too important to leave it up to a school system to convey it to my boys. I will gladly make God part of my 50% to teach my children. And I will teach them to make God “all theirs”. It is wonderful to find a group of friends to walk in faith with you. It is wonderful to discover God with fellow believers you love and respect. Just don’t look in all the wrong places for the support you need to live your faith. That way all the wrong places won’t be able to weaken it.
it's just you and me. And that is exactly the way it ought to be! Hold me tight, Lord, let me love you a little more each day, and let it show.