The other day I was talking to a minister at work who told me he visits Korean churches on a regular basis and he would gladly send me a Korean Bible. He then offered to send me a English Bible after he remembered I told him I was adopted. He gave me his card and his daughter was apologizing to me afterwards. He was a nice man, although I don’t like it when people try to evangelize others.
It makes me think back to when my brother died. The minster, to the church I attended when I was younger, came to the house to speak to the family. He was the person who was going to speak at my brother’s service. I only remember one comment he made to us. I had stayed quiet the whole time until the minister said that my brother was going to a better place and God wanted him there. My emotional retort was something to the effect that I didn’t care if God wanted him, I would rather have him alive here with us. But no matter what any of us believe, he wasn’t coming back.
I believe the Bible is a literary text. A book written by man. In it there are some wonderful words, meaningful lessons and guidelines we should mind. But there are some contradictory details and many areas where I believe the book was a tool, a way to control the masses and tell others how they should live their lives.
I usually shy away from talking about religion. Many wars have started because of religion and/or had a theological aspect to it. It is a topic that can get heated quickly and many have very strong opinions on it. So strong that it causes them to feel hate towards others who think or believe differently. This is sad, but true. If asked I would call myself an agnostic but I have never done a thorough research into all the religions.
I have nothing against those who believe, believe in Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Taoism, etc. Sometimes it seems like it would be so much easier to live believing in a higher power, to believe in a God who loves us and forgives us and to die knowing I was going to a better place, that there is a bigger meaning to life. People reach out to religion for various reasons, at different times in their lives, because of tradition passed on from their parents/guardians. Some go to it to explain the pain, the misery, the tragedy, the despair in their life. Great if it helps them, if it eases the hurt in their life, if it helps them see the beauty and love in life. Even better if religion helps make them be a better person to themselves and others.
But I have my own opinions. Sometimes miracles happen, sometimes tragedy takes away from the innocent, but this is part of life. People can be good to their neighbors, forgive those who wrong them, fill their life with love. People can also torture, murder, carry misery with them and infect others. We are responsible for our own actions. Even at the lowest points in my life, when my brother died, when I separated from my husband, I never once reached out to God. He wasn’t responsible, he wasn’t going to give me the answers, he wasn’t going to save me, he wasn’t going to pick up the pieces for me. I had to do that myself.