Am of the belief that faith is a personal matter, that whether i chose to believe in God or not, where i chose to place my faith is up to me. I shouldn’t be brainwashed by someone else’s beliefs. But today that belief was put to test as someone tried to tell me that what i believe in is not “very christian” of me. Well, one, i never proclaimed myself as a christian, and two, who said that just because my beliefs differ a little from yours(or a lot) means we are not of the same faith? I was left with a lot of questions in my head as i sat there and listened to this ‘sister in Christ’ as she preached her ‘Gospel’ to me. I mean, when did Christians adopt the motto that “you are either with us or against us”? I felt ambushed. And all because my opinion, or rather, my beliefs were different from someone else. Whatever happened to “thou shall not judge”?
So as i sat there and listened to people talk of how they believe in the existence of heaven and hell, it made me wonder, do all Christians believe in heaven and hell? And if so, why? Is it because it makes sense to them so they believe in it or is it because it has been drilled into them since they were young? I grew up with the belief that if i sinned, i would go to hell…so yes, i struggled through my early years and also teenage years to do good and what is right and avoid sinning, not because i liked (just making a point) it, but because the fear of internal fire was instilled in me at a young age. Am guessing am not alone in that, but as i grew up and became a woman with a mind of her own, (and a somehow learned one) my views changed. Now, i did not say that my faith or beliefs changed, just my view on things. And one of the view that stuck with me is that people are different and different people have different faith.
For example, i learnt that the Muslims, who believe in Allah and his prophet Mohamed, may have the same faith, but they do not all believe in jihad-ism and even if they do, they have different views on how it should be carried out. But what do i know about Muslims and their faith, zilch. There are Buddhists, who believe in souls, Supreme soul and soul reincarnation. And then there are Christians. Christianity has evolved from wanting to be like Christ, to being followers of Christ, to wanting people to believe in the same faith, to judging those who don’t believe in the same and its still evolving. Am not saying all Christians believe this, or are like this, am just saying it has changed from what it was when it started to what it is now.
We live in a world with more than six billion people, and some believe in heaven and hell, some don’t. But who said that just because you believe in hell and heaven that you are in the right and those who don’t are in the wrong? You cannot try to change someone’s view on such just because it doesn’t rhyme with yours. I choose not to believe in hell and heaven, instead, i choose to believe that i can do what is right, without the fear of hell hanging over my head if i don’t. I choose to exercise my freewill like i believe God intended. I chose to believe that heaven is here on earth, and that hell is here too. Internal fire, maybe it does exist but who is to say? Is it that its a fear that has been passed on from one person for millions of years ago? Or is there literal internal fire that will burn for all eternity?
Just because i no longer believe in the ”heaven and hell express train” that i believed in when i was young doesn’t mean i stopped believing in God!! I believe in God, i believe in his son Jesus, i have faith in God. The basics that my grandmother taught me are still intact, its the whole view on heaven and hell that has changed. Is that blasphemous of me? I don’t know…. i just believe that no one, not mothers, not pastors, and especially not other ‘Christians’ should dictate what and who someone believes in. You believe in the church, the building, i don’t, accept that and move on. Others believe in the coming together on a certain day, it can be anywhere, that’s church to them, that’s their faith, that the building is just that, a building. And there are those that believe in neither the building nor the coming together, whatever your definition of church is, they don believe in it(church).
Does that mean that such people are in the wrong? Does it mean that just because your belief makes sense to you, it should also make sense to me? That your faith is more superior just because it has a bigger gathering? That my opinion about religion shouldn’t be spoken of in front of “holier than thou” people because it wouldn’t go down well with them?
“Colonel Pogi – There is a way to Hell, even from the gates of Heaven.”
I don’t know when religion and faith got this complex but everyone has a right to believe in what they feel is right….even when its not right to you. Faith is all about the beliefs that make sense to you, not the world, and everyone is entitled to that. But that is just an opinion of a girl who doesn’t go to church, whats yours?