Saturday, March 10, 2012

Private Faith?

In the world we live in there are many unwritten rules to live by, such as: “Don’t discuss politics and religion”, and “Don’t ask how much someone’s house or car costs”. Or how about this one? “Faith is a private thing; it’s to be kept to yourself.”

"Private" faith? This one has always stumped me. I can understand not pushing our views about Democrats and Republicans, taxes, health care, free trade, or the war in Iraq, but to tell someone to keep their faith a secret just doesn’t make much sense to me. I mean I wouldn’t die for my political views, but I would die for Christ if need be.

Many of us would call ourselves Christians or simply put, we follow the teachings of Jesus. At some point or another we decided to make Him our Lord. We fell in love with Him. Our heart was moved when we realized that He died for us so that we could live and not die in our sins and go to hell. And, in light of that, we were forever changed. Now the unwritten rule says we are to keep that to ourselves. To ask me not to talk about Him is like asking me not to breath. I’m not a weirdo; I’m just overwhelmed buy the magnitude of His love for me. As it says in the book of Jeremiah, Then I said, “I will not make mention of Him, nor speak anymore in His name." But His word was in my heart like a burning fire shut up in my bones; I was weary of holding it back, And I could not.

To ask someone who has truly fallen in love with Christ not to talk about Him is like asking a man who has fallen in love with a woman, and marries her, not to be seen in public with her. That would be unheard of. That would be just plain weird! No one has touched my life like Jesus. No one has loved me like He has and because of this I am compelled to break the rules.

Now we all know that sharing our convictions about important issues can reveal disagreements. More than that, it can actually start a fight and even divide families and “friends.” Nothing seems to make the air thick like someone making a statement such as, “Anybody that would vote for that guy is a brainless idiot!” or “That woman is going to hell for sure!” Maybe the problem isn’t the convictions we have as much as the way we discuss them. 

It is evident in our society that some of our fellow citizens lack good people skills, but that doesn’t mean that we should spend our lives talking about things that don’t really matter…" does it? 

By Tom Zurowski


  1. Tom,

    I could hear the clatter of the hammer as hit the nail on the head so many times in this post. So appreciate your heart. I do believe the problem lies in the way we discuss, not the content of the discussion.

    I have friends who are not "following" Jesus as we would say and it is my joy to walk with them in genuine friendship. They know Who He is to me and many times want to know more. They also know I value them enough to not force my beliefs onto where they are at. My fervor is saved for my prayers for them.

    Maybe some of this might even be traced back to our view of God. I once asked an athiest friend to tell me about the God he doesn't believe in. When he had finished I concluded I absolutely agreed with him. I didn't believe in that god either. ;-) We had a wonderful conversation.

    Jesus never was harsh on anyone except the religious elite that made knowing God hard and inaccessible. I do strongly believe Jesus is the only way but I also know I will never walk with someone in a discovery process of this truth for themselves, if I don't genuinely value them enough to really live in relationship with them. And if I don't trust their hearts to God Who is arguably far more concerned with their eternity than even I am.

    My job is to love and be real about who I am and who He is to me. His job is to use that to create a hunger so deep in those around me, He is the only one deep enough to fill it.