Recently I saw the following posted on a status on my Facebook feed:
“(user) Is a Christian and proud to say it!!! Let's see how many people on Facebook aren't afraid to show their love for God. Repost this as your status. The catch is each time you see this as someones status, say a quick prayer for the person who posted. GOD BLESS!”
This status immediately brought to mind a few questions.
Firstly, why would any Christian not be “proud” to proclaim their faith? Particularly when, according to www.religioustolerance.org more than 75% of Americans self-identify as Christian? It is not as if they were Native American and had been made to feel ashamed of their faith by Christian missionaries and “Indian Schools”. Nor are they Wiccan or a member of another “fringe” religion and thus often forced to defend their religious choice to those who think they cut heads off chickens or practice some other, more diabolical form of ritual sacrifice.
Secondly, why would they be “afraid to show their love for God”? I could, perhaps, understand this if they were Jewish or Muslim and had to fear actual violence against their person. According to FBI hate crimes statistics more than 1100 hate crimes were directed against Jews and more than 140 vs. Muslims in 2007, the last year for which statistics are available. Of these crimes more than 340 were “crimes against persons” as opposed to “crimes against property” (250+ for Jews and 80+ for Muslims). This compares to a total of 23 “crimes against persons” committed against Christians (and that combines both Protestants and Catholics).
Finally, why say a prayer for those with whom you agree and who, according to your own beliefs, are already favored by God? Wouldn't it be more “Christian” to pray for those with whom you don't agree, especially those who are non-believers?
Perhaps I have it wrong here. If so let me know. Either way, I think these are questions worth asking.