Today on our little caffeine chat - I'm taking one of your questions and going a little deep. I'm hoping you will all chime in with your thoughts (and be respectful and kind to others PLEASE!)
SOOOOO..... first of all several of you wanted to know what this commenter asked me:
Are you friends in real life with any people who aren't believers? e.g., atheists or agnostics? Would you be, if you had the opportunity? If you are or were friends with someone who doesn't share your religious beliefs, would you feel you needed to testify to them? Or could you just be friends and let them believe what they believe? Here is my answer: Right now in my stage of my life - I will say that 98% of my friends ARE Christians. It's not because I don't want to have friends who aren't Christians - it's because right now while I'm staying home with the girls - the only people I really come in contact with are my church friends. That's pretty much where I spend any time I'm not at home. When I worked I had friends of all faiths and beliefs (or non beliefs). I do NOT feel the need to evangelize to them constantly and I DO respect their beliefs. But I won't apologize for the fact that I do pray for any friends I have who don't know Jesus. He's the greatest thing I have ever known and I believe the Bible. People don't have to agree with me. But I do think the Bible is the truth. So I do pray for all my friends to know the truth. BECAUSE I care about the people I come in contact with. I want them to have the same joy and hope and peace that comes from Him. I wish I had more non-Christian friends. I actually LOVE that not everyone who reads here shares my beliefs. I love that you feel open to share what you feel if you don't. Because it helps me to gain perspective outside of my "Christian bubble". I read a post by another blogger recently that made me so sad when I read so many comments about how people view Christianity. I hate that so many share a negative view of something I think is so amazing. It opened my eyes to how I hope I treat others. I will add that it IS important for my closest friends to be Christians. I just find it easier to have my closest friends encourage me in my walk and know that they will pray for me and share my beliefs. I also try to remember that Jesus spent most of His time on earth with people we might think we shouldn't hang out with - prostitutes, thieves, murderers. Jesus had no sin - He wasn't going to be tempted to be caught up in sin so I think this was easier for Him than for your average Christian these days. But I think it was an example to us that we shouldn't live in a bubble. We should make friends with those who aren't like us. The Bible says "Love your Neighbor as yourself".......I consider everyone my neighbor. And because I love everyone - I want them to know the best thing I've ever known!
Kelley left this in the comments and it's what I'm trying to express - " I once saw a video of Penn Jillette (of Penn & Teller; who is, by
the way, a confessed atheist) say something to this effect, "How much
would you (a Christian) have to HATE me (an atheist) NOT to tell me
about your God if you truly believe that He is the way to everlasting
I think most Christians (and especially myself) may want to pray for you or share with you - NOT out of judgement or because they think they are better than you. That's not what's in my heart at all. If I do - it's because I love you as a person and there is no way I can't share with you the most important thing in my life. It's BECAUSE I care. Not because I need or want to be right. I'd love you to weigh in on your thoughts. (Remember - be kind and respectful)