As I look around me, day-to-day, I see the secularist world slowly taking a strangle hold on society. It seems wherever we turn, we find that our religious freedoms are being eroded. The interesting thing is that though some of those limitations on our religious freedoms are being legally forced on the Christian community, much of it is self-imposed. For many of us, we have created our own shackles – our own bondage.
We fear what others may say if we express our Christianity, our faith and our belief in the Lord our God. The full expression of our Christian beliefs were at one time considered normal and natural in our culture and society – now it is considered taboo.
Why, as a community of faith, have we allowed this to happen to us? Our Lord invested in our humanity at a great price – the life of his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. In several short generations, we have squandered this eternal investment.
The Lord seeks an interest on his investment – as in the parable of the individual of high rank who gave gold coins to his loyal servants (Luke 19:11-27). In that parable one of the servants, fearing the wrath of the high ranking individual, simply buried his coin and returned it to his master with no interest while the others earned a return on their gold coin. As a Christian community here in North America, we have lost that coin let lone return it with interest. What the Lord has entrusted in us, we have squandered. We need to find the coin and invest it wisely!
Many of us do not hold positions of influence in society where we can be catalysts for immediate change. That does not mean that through our day-to-day encounters that we cannot start asserting our religious freedoms and expressions of faith. For example, today I was at our local mall and stopped for lunch in the food court. I purchased my favourite Thai dish and took a seat in the food court. I then bowed my head, made the sign of the cross, and prayed ‘Grace Before Meals.’ I did not do it for attention. I always say grace before every meal. Why would I change my expression of faith just because I am not at home?
A simple act of faith is significant. It encourages other Christians and tells the community that you are a Christian and unafraid to live like one. As long as your expression of faith is for the Lord and not for self-gratitude, the public display of your faith is welcomed by the Lord.
I always take the opportunity to talk about my faith in public. The old saying of not talking about your faith in public only serves the needs of the secularist. I say speak to your heart’s delight.
“But what if I offend someone?” you say. Then let them be offended. We should not remain silent simply because someone does not agree with our beliefs. Agree to disagree with others if you have to, but never allow another to force your silence, for when you do, as a community, we take another step down that slippery slope to irrelevance.
In fact, include your faith in every ‘touch-point’ you have with society. We need to scream out to the world, in voice and in action, that we are here, that we will not willingly be forbidden, by secular society, to live our lives in full faithfulness to the Lord our God. This should extend to the workplace, businesses, political circles, and every other place we come into contact with in our communities and society.
We should not let our egos and our fears hold us prisoners to the secular onslaught. Jesus Christ set the example on the cross, as have the many martyrs who have shed blood in his name. When we cower and hide our faith and restrict our lives of faith for fear of ‘what others may say’ we cease to live and are simply existing. We disrespect the Lord Jesus Christ and the souls of the Christian martyrs who shed blood so that we can freely live as a Christian community.
As Christians, we need to weave a fabric of Christianity consisting of threads woven through the spiritual, political, social and economic spheres, thus creating a blanket of Truth in which we can wrap ourselves with proudly and more importantly do justice to the name of the Lord our God.
Copyright © 2013, Luciano Corbo