Thursday, August 18, 2005

A Crisis of Faith

As I sit here tonight, I am experiencing emotions and misgivings I haven't had in years. Maybe ever. I'm wondering if all that I have ever believed about the inherent decency and goodness of people is nothing more than wishful thinking. My faith, not just in my fellow man, but in God is being sorely tested.

Earlier today I received an email that contained the following,
"...Well it's over for your friend Cindy. She's leaving her "Camp Casey" not as the victor, but with her coattail between her legs. Defeated as she deserved to be. Hopefully she has learned her lesson, not to cross the President and not to cross God. In his wisdom God has struck down Ms Cindy's mother with a stroke. She claims this is her reason for leaving and returning home. We know better. It is because she knows she cannot win because she is on the side of the devil. Soon you and those like you will know too the wrath of God."

How can I express the pain and heartache I feel? First of all Cindy Sheehan has suffered the loss of her child, her marriage has fallen apart, for many reasons one of which is her inability to simply 'get over it already' and get on with her life. She has witnessed her own family (well cousins at least) betraying her by writing letters making false claims about her mental and emotional wellbeing. She's seen the right wing media takes these false statements and plaster them all over the news. Now, she is faced with going home to her dear Mother who has suffered a stroke and she may loose her as well. All of this she has endured and still there are those who are so filled with hate, that they would find joy and glee in her heartache.

The writer of the above email made a point of reminding me that God is on the side of the "right" and George Bush is his appointed messenger. "Why else," he asks "would God allow them to win wars and elections?" "Have you not noticed," he says "that Republicans and Christians are taking back the country you Godless infidels have stolen?" "Soon," he adds "you too shall know the wrath of God."
This brave soldier of God however did not have the courage to attach his/her name to the email, and it was sent from a some anonymous email account.

Here's the thing. If this is an example of being Christian. If this is Christianity at it's pinnacle, then God help me, because I want no part of it.
The God I grew up knowing was a God of love. Of compassion. He promised the meek shall inherit the earth . My Bible said to go forth and be a beacon, to let my light shine so that the lost might see. It taught me to not just care for the poor and lost but to serve them. The brand of Christianity I see being paraded about today is NOT the what I was raised to believe in.
So now I have to wonder. Am I wrong? Has all I believe been wrong? Why are the people I see as being cruel, judgmental, and hateful, winning? Why was Cindy's mother struck down at a time when Cindy needed to be strong and stand up for what she believed was the right thing? Why do family and friends betray us when we most need their support? Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people? Where is God in this dark hour? Or have I simply had the wrong idea all along of what God is?


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