Photo by Gabriel Lamza on Unsplash

I am most emphatically NOT a churchgoer. If you’re offended, then this is not the article for you. However, stick around if you don’t care where a person worships or how they worship. You are my audience.

And no, don’t keep reading if you think I’m going to take a slam at people who do go to church or the church itself. That’s not what I’m going. I believe a person should worship when, how, and where they choose. I don’t care if you call your God, God, Jehovah, Allah, The Universe, The All Mighty, or even The Flying Spaghetti Monster. I don’t care what race or religion you are.

It’s not religion that divides us, it’s intolerance of each other’s religion. Intolerance at its basic level is fear. Fear that the other guy has all the answers. Fear that we don’t.

Well, you know what? None of us have all the answers!!! Nobody! We are all here on equal footing with an equal playing field. It’s an extension of the ‘fake it until you make it’ paradigm. We’re all posers, all afraid, all whistling in the dark hoping that our biggest fears won’t materialize. We’re in the same boat.

Then we have faith. Faith counterbalances our fears. We don’t know for sure what’s out there, but we have faith that our institutions have the right answers for us, that we have intuited the answers that give us comfort, or we watch and learn what others have gone through for us.

Faith connects us to something greater than ourselves.

Love and faith go hand in hand.

We are here to learn and grow. Every experience, every encounter, good and bad is a growth lesson should we choose to acknowledge the thing set before us to learn.

Every person we meet has something to teach us whether the encounter is good or bad. Sometimes the lesson is merely to remember that we too are human and make mistakes.