Love, not Religion

As a young kid growing up, the only thing I knew for certain was that on Sundays, my family went to church.

Loving people with open hearts and minds that welcomed me without a second guess, and I always think back to the innocence of what “religion” meant at a young age. Love your brother, love your neighbor, and even love those that you didn’t get along with. All I remember growing up was that with God, came love, and that seemed enough for me.

Yet, as I grew older I looked around to see religious groups and people associating themselves with God, turn to evil and hatred of others.

The man holding the sign on the street corner to warn us all that “sinners go to Hell, repent now!” and the groups that stand outside abortion clinics to protest and claim that these young girls who are scared out of their mind and conflicted about their situation are doomed for eternity. Maybe there’s something I’m missing, but I don’t remember any teachings in Sunday school about hating and terrorizing others.

I am no saint by any stretch of the imagination, and in fact, I’ve had existential doubt about God ever being real like any normal person. I lust, swear, lie, and sin more often than I’d like to admit. I can’t recite Bible verses, and for the life of me I couldn’t tell you the 10 Commandments, but if there’s one thing I knew that Jesus preached, it is love.

More powerful than any drug, more beautiful than any song, an emotion that delves to the deepest quarries of a man and reshapes them completely. Nothing else on this planet can do that to a person.

These blogs aren’t meant to cram facts in your face, or to give an agenda to you all, this is simply to spread a message we can all adhere to.

If religious groups fill themselves with hatred of others, segregate for their “cause” and deny others the right to live their life in the manner that they seem fit, then I don’t think I want to associate myself with a religion.

I cannot speak for God, (who can?) but if He could sit down and talk about what is most important in our lives, I believe it would be love.

I have a faith based on a relationship of love, albeit a flawed one on my end, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Love a little more today.