Disappointing Agenda of Some People...
I agree with the opinion that positive faith is something we truly need in this world. No matter what one's belief, it's imperative to find respect or at least tolerance for those who believe in something positive, which may differ from our own personal ideals.
I think the thing I find most disappointing is that there are those who tout "free thinking", who have no (or limited) belief in a higher power, who blast certain belief systems, and basically insult those who do have faith. It's a prejudice that they have, and tend not to acknowledge.
I find that Christianity is usually a target. It's one of the most widely followed in the world and it's becoming more and more chic to malign people about religious beliefs that are many centuries old. I also find that those with the loudest voices tend to be those who once practiced a religion (they or their family), fell out of faith, and therefore feel they have license to hassle those who choose to continue participating.
One of the biggest misconceptions about those who practice religion is that they do not think for themselves...as if we attend our local synagogue, church, etc. for our weekly "programming" and it only involves learning a belief in divinity. What seems to be easily forgotten is the integrity that is developed. To take care of our neighbors, nourish our own values, and basically try to make the world a better place.
Are there problems with religion? Of course. It's up to each of us to continually work on what needs to be corrected. The more important question is, does the positive value outweigh the negative? The answer is a resounding YES.
So while there are those denominations that feel it is their mission to bear witness and spread the word of faith, there are also those who take a more subtle approach, discussing their beliefs when asked, and basically "being" a positive example. After all, faith begins as a very personal choice.
For those who are criticized, challenged, made fun of, or worse because of your positive spirituality, please remember this: The world is in desperate need of faith. There are a lot of twisted individuals out there and personally, I believe evil has a very REAL presence in the world. Having faith in something infinitely loving, unselfish, and beautiful is a wonderful thing. We can humbly continue to carry on, and try to become the best people we can be.
Thanks for reading.