“How many of you have phones?” the priest asked while giving his homily. Ninety nine percent of the congregation raised their hands. My estimation here is based on the simple observation that every person my eyes landed on had their hand up, except for the kids who seemed like they were five and below.
Then came the next question, “How many of you have bibles?” The number of people who had their hands up reduced significantly.
The priest didn’t stop there, he proceeded, “And how many pray every morning before they get out of bed?” To my astonishment, only a few raised their hands. From my estimation, there were less than fifty hands up. The humongous church which was packed to capacity had only a few people who showed that they did pray in the morning. I realize sometimes people, myself included, make assumptions subconsciously. For instance, before that day I had never spared a moment to think if people owned bibles or if even they prayed outside the church premises. Somehow I had unconsciously assumed that everyone in that church prayed in the morning just to thank God for a new day and to seek His guidance and protection. So needless to say, the results of that little exercise conducted by the priest took me by surprise.
Nowadays almost every person above the age of five has an electronic gadget which they use to connect with their friends on the social media. Having an account on any one or all of these sites feels like a basic need- to the best of us at least; I guess someone should revise the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs in relation to changing times. Of all the eons since man’s creation/evolution (depending on what you believe in), I like this one best. I mean, I can connect with anyone, anywhere in the world just by the click of a button. The one thing that makes me appreciate social media is the fact that it has provided a global platform, where people from all continents get to interact.
On the downside though, this gadgets have been used to propagate social evils… young people use them to download explicit material from the internet and this has been one of the principal factors that I blame for the escalating moral decay in the society. As a kid, I was made to understand that petty issues such as chewing gum and talking in the church were wrong. Nowadays I look around and I see mature folks busy chewing, others taking soft drinks and a good majority tweeting and facebooking. Does that mean the ‘ban’ was lifted? What happened to people respecting the sanctity of the church as it is the House of God?
What happened to people adhering to the Ten Commandments? I don’t know if God sent a chosen few epistles notifying them that it was right for people to break the laws , inscribed on stone, which have been passed down from generation to generation; but the things I see and hear… my heart bleeds!
A few months ago, I was made privy to some stomach churning information; some two teenage siblings I know had been engaging in aberrant sexual activity-incest if you rather- under their parents’ roof… I’ve never assimilated that information to date. Everytime I see either of the two, the sordid affair rushes through my mind but I always try to get my head out of that gutter; I know if I embarked on trying to understand how it all happened I would be lost in my own imagination… and just recently on the news, a few girls were arraigned in court for supposedly engaging in carnal knowledge with a canine!
At the risk of being branded a prude, the story left me in a state of utter shock. I’m fully aware that such things do happen in real life, in XXX movies especially, but I guess seeing it on the news made it more real… the details weren’t divulged really, but it’s my imagination of the whole she-bang that makes it so unsettling. I imagine the infections those girls risked contracting, and the mere thought of an animal sticking its ‘penis’ inside the young college women makes me nauseous.
The priest asked how many people had Bibles; I own one, and even though I don’t read it as much as I ought to, I peruse through its pages every once in a while. Of the many verses I’ve read the one that has made a significant impact on my life is John 8:7, where Jesus said, “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”. Fundamentally, what He was implying here is that we (human beings) are all sinners; it doesn’t matter if one hit their parent, broke into a bank, murdered, told a lie, fornicated or sullied the sanctity of their nuptial by committing adultery… all those are sins. I was taught that there are venial and mortal sins, but the underlying point is that a sin is a sin. It’s for this precise reason that I don’t judge people; because firstly, I am a sinner and secondly, I wouldn’t want to be judged too… by God notably.
It would be really hypocritical of me to hurl stones at those girls, but at the same time I would want to give some insight on matters sex. Ever read Leviticus 18? The chapter highlights unlawful sexual relations; the sexual practices which God abhors. Succinctly, it contains laws related to incest, bestiality and homosexuality.
I look at the world today, and I see so much evil. We have deviated from good morals and worst part is that the society is so permissive about it. We’re not all Christians, so I wouldn’t recommend everyone to read the Bible. I have pagan friends too, but the fact that they don’t believe in God doesn’t automatically make them sinners, as some of my “religious’ acquaintances act like the better sinners in every sense of the word. From my Christian perspective though, I believe that primarily, people have drifted from God. We’re not praying enough and the best of us glorify materialism. For instance, the girls in the aforementioned story were caught shooting an X-rated movie. Basically they were doing it all for money- the sole ticket to perdition.
In the book of Haggai 2:8 God says, “All the silver and gold of the world are mine! The new temple will be more splendid than the old one, and there I will give my people prosperity and peace.” This means that all the riches belong to Him. If anyone seeks wealth anywhere else other than from Him, they would only be walking the broad road to perdition; a road that will bring them immeasurable misery.
I believe in the creation theory. In the book of Genesis 2:18 we’re told how after creating man in His own image, God subsequently created a woman from the man’s ribs when He saw the man was lonely. How then would one suppose He feels when He sees all that is happening? Brothers sleeping with their sisters, fathers with their daughters, girls with dogs… It just feels wrong. These things are not new to Him though; He saw it all in Sodom and Gomorrah, and just to jog your memory, the two ancient cities went up in flames. God gave us a chance to redeem ourselves, but we’re still following in those abominable footsteps. If you ask me, we’re testing His patience. We shouldn’t be surprised if the same fate befalls us. God forbid!
The world is vast, and half of the occurrences would drive one to a state of dementia if we didn’t believe in a Supreme Being; if we didn’t look at things through the eyes of faith. To me, God is that Higher force that I believe in. His Holy Spirit inspired those who wrote the Bible, so I believe that whatever is written in its pages was meant to be a manual on how to live. Just try looking at it from my perspective; when one purchases an appliance they insist on getting a manual; in the same respect, we were given the Bible so it could help us align our will with God’s.
I wrote this piece from my Christian perspective, and even though I would wish that everyone believed in God, I’m not oblivious to the fact that there are numerous religions that are subject to varying beliefs. God is aware of that too. He created us all differently, and He respects our will, otherwise He would have forced us all to believe in Him. Jesus said there are sheep and goats, and each will be judged according to his kind. Even if one doesn’t believe in God, of importance here is, are their actions morally right?