With all my God-bashing lately, perhaps I sound a little harsh and intolerant.
I don't mean to sound that way . . .
I don't have an issue with someone practicing religion. I don't mind that United States currency says, In God we trust. I'm not bothered by the Pledge of Allegiance including the phrase, One nation, under God. However, I do wish that more people realized that our Pledge never included this phrase until 1954.
I don't really mind prayer in schools. Besides, students can pray in their hearts whenever they want; prayer cannot truly be stopped. Here is a seemingly little known fact: student lead meetings of a religious nature are allowed in public schools. Federal Law allows this. Yep, that's right. Students may have a Christian club or prayer meeting before or after school as an extra curricular activity and pray! pray! pray! And believers of any faith can enjoy this freedom. This can also be practiced during a school's "activity period" or "booster club" period. The only catch is that the organization must be student prompted to ensure the free will of all participants.
So, people should stop saying that prayer has been taken out of school. Rather, such people should use their present freedoms to continue praying in school. Then, focus their rant towards something else more needful -- like generating better funding for their neighborhood school.
Now, I'll tell ya what I truly dislike: intolerance.
Religion should be a private matter because free will must be upheld. This is why prayer in school may continue if students organize for themselves; free will is exercised. The prayer sessions are made private, yet the schools are not forcing religion of any sort. That's the spirit of the First Amendment.
May I also submit that Christians should exchange the notion that culture should be dominated by Christian principles with the idea that they should simply attempt to witness to people. Our government is secular and doesn't need to specifically reflect Christianity. Such a mindset comes from a distortion of an Old Testament concept which assumes the United States has replaced Israel as God's chosen people. Just try to win souls one by one. After all . . . didn't Jesus say, "render to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's"? Consider the notion that Christians should have desire for the advent of the Kingdom of Heaven . . . and not to busy themselves with turning the world into the Kingdom of Heaven.
And what of Paul the Apostle's words when he says not to be unequally yoked together with unbelievers? He says to "come out from among them and be separate".
Paul didn't say, "You will be assimilated. Resistance if futile."
Christians shouldn't act like the Borg.
Be tolerant of other people's faiths and the lack thereof; I will be tolerant of yours in return.
Share your faith. Make your point. Disagree with me; Witness to the world.
I'll make my points and share my non-faith. I'll disagree, too. Enlighten the world.
But, if we agree to disagree -- no one has to get nasty.
I think we can all get along just fine with that attitude.
If everyone within the spectrum of faith and non-faith could better get along, I would be quite glad!