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Posts Tagged ‘christian’

The Problem With The Confederate Flag

flagThere’s no doubt this will disappoint and infuriate some of my readers, but I feel I would be a coward if I didn’t tell you how I feel about the Confederate flag controversy and why.

First, I’m very much a child of the South, the past five or six generations on one side have been in Arkansas, before that Georgia, Virginia and a boat that sailed from England.  On the other side of the family I’ve got four generations from Arkansas, before that Tennesee then Texas where you can still visit the town of Granger, Texas. I’ve been told it was named by my great great great great grandfather Granger Gertrudio McDaniel.   One of my great great grandfathers and several great great uncles fought in the Civil war…for the South.I say all this so you understand there’s not a single yankee in the wood pile.

Still, I’m so relieved the Confederate flags are  being removed from our state capitol buildings. They don’t belong there because that flag does not represent or honor ALL of the people who live in our beautiful state.

I don’t think the Confederate flag should be banned or burned or hidden but it doesn’t belong on our Capitol or in our schools.

Yes, it is our heritage and it’s your right to fly it at home or wear on a tee-shirt. But my heritage is my history….the past. My present, my right now, my at this moment is different.

Right now I have a lot of very dear friends who I love and they are black.  I love them more than I love that flag. I don’t like thinking what my great great great grandfather was doing 175 years ago and what their great great great grandfather’s might have been doing 175 years ago. It makes me sad and embarrassed. And this country belongs to them just as much as it belongs to me.

If the Confederate flag, that brings so many so much pride causes my dear friends one moment of pain or discomfort….well, their love means more to me than pride. I am not ashamed of my relatives, they were brave, strong, Christian people. they thought they were doing the right thing. But they were wrong.

I still like the General Lee, Lynard Skynard and I know every word to Dixie.

Bottom line, my black friends are more important than that flag. They bring me more joy, they help me, make me better and represent my heart more than the confederate flag. I chose those I love.

And the Confederate flag does not define my past and I have other things to be proud of now. If I want to leave a lasting legacy it won’t be the Confederate flag, it will be my children. Sandor, Alexis, Mary and Jack.  They are my battle flag now, through them I will find a way to make the world a better place and I will carry them forever along with the flag of the United States of America.

(If anyone knows a  literacy agent or publisher  help me out.)

The Snarky Church

This morning Lexie and I drove  to the corner store, David and David’s and I saw a girl who goes to school with Lex, but is a year older. I said, “She really is pretty.”

“Yeah, she is,” my daughter agreed, “but she doesn’t like me.”

“Why?”

Lex just shrugged, “She goes to ________ Church, you know how it is.”

Lexie explained this situration in such a “low key, no-big deal” way. But I’ve heard this kind of comment about that church over and over and over in our small Arkansas community. Kids and adults talk about two  churches in our area on a regular basis.

If you go to one of these churches you have it easy,  and you get to go to heaven. If you attend a different church, these church goers make you feel as though you’re chances of passing through the pearly gates are minimal. And those congregations are seen as openly hostile and rude. That’s just crazy. No church wants that kind of pr.

This weekend an adult friend of mine compared the pastor of the ______Church to John Lithgow in Foot Loose. “There will be no dancing in my town!” and “You people from the outside, who are dancing, are going to hell.” But he doesn’t even realize half the kids in his own congration are swinging and swaying every chance they get.

Bottom line, some churches are really snarky. They aren’t nice to people who don’t go  their.  And that seems absurd because Christians are supposed to be nice and Christ-like, right?   If I was a pastor or minister (trust me I have too many suitcases of sin to lead anyone) these are not the adjectives I would want associated with my church.

The truth is I know some very nice people who go to these churches.  They are really lovely.  But the rude ones are also the noisey ones, and they are the ones everybody remembers.  Maybe 80 percent of the people in church are kind and loving but the 20  percent ruin the churches reputation.

If I led a church I’d want folks to think of my people as the smiling, l0ving, giving, supportive congregation. Then new people would want to join my church and  they could learn all about God’s love.  

Here’s the truth. You need to be nice to the sinner to get him through the church doors. This includes kids in high school, hobos and soccer moms.

Why would anyone join a church full of  snarky, rude, judgemental people? If they make me feel bad  I don’t want to hang with them.  .