I have been very mixed up about religion my entire life. Having been raised in what I consider a cult The religion of my birth has caused great divides in my family. The members claim it is the ONLY TRUE religion. They actually say you will know it by the love shown. I am here to tell you, I have not felt any love. It is a very cold religion. Recently at a funeral for my cousin there were many witnesses present. Some were cordial and spoke to me. One uncle , however, would not even return a polite nod. How Christian is that? Going as far to walk off when I attempted to take a picture of him and his siblings.
Since being free of that cult, I have visited many churches. I have learned the things taught about other religions as a child was false. the people there were nice, honest, and sincere for the most part. I was especially impressed with all they did for the community and the mission work overseas. And WOW, the witnesses were especially harsh on Catholics. Since I’ve been out I have had a few friends who are of the Catholic Faith. They are the most loving, giving, honest and wonderful people I know. Coming out I found that all religions were not bad.
Here is my view, however unpopular. I do not believe that going to Church is a salvation issue. I believe I can, and do, have a relationship with God through Christ. Some feel going to church strengthens that relationship. For them, it probably does. But, for me, putting that time and energy into something else, like simply talking to God through prayer and meditating on his works, is what bolsters my relationship with God. It solidifies my faith every time I pray for a friend, or a friend of a friend who is sick or having some difficulty. I feel the power of prayer. I have attended different Churches from time to time. The people there have been very nice at most of them. I’ve enjoyed the sermons at most. I have a great respect for churches that give so much back to their communities.
I am a very private person. I don’t have to let anyone know what I do or give. God knows. And he knows me as a person. That is enough for me. I accept the gift of grace. Ephesians 2:8:
American King James Version
For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God
What really seals my attitude is when someone says "You need to go to church." Or "You must not have Jesus in Your life." How could anyone know that? Or the worse one, "you’re going to hell!" This kind of thing makes me turn to God in prayer for them. We all are imperfect. We all make mistakes. The best we can do is love one another. Let people make their own choices. Can anyone honestly say everyone not going to church is evil and all churchgoers are saints? I think not.
What I would say to the Church-goer worried about me because I do not go to church: Don’t worry about me. Jesus died for us all. My relationship with God through Christ is a very personal one. I am happy for you, please be happy for me.
Post note: I feel we raised our children with good morals. We taught empathy for others. We are very proud of the adults they have become. My son and his wife attend Church. My daughter does not. One can only look at the way she is raising her children, the way she handles her responsibilities, and her conduct to see she is a good person. I’m proud of my children. Whether they choose church or not. She may choose to attend a church one day. I don't think she is opposed. Sometimes a church has to be the right fit for a person.
However, if she never does, I will never doubt Jesus’ love for her and her love for Jesus.