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Well said, Jane Smith! Being Weird for Jesus went out in the 80's. When will being a Jerk for Jesus go out?
When you decide to link your values to people like Sarah Palin, of course you are going to be the target of jokes. When you decide to link your faith to that of intolerance and bigotry, of course people are going to exclude you from parties. And when you think for one moment that you are being persecuted, compared to all the other ethic groups that have been persecuted in this country, you can be assured people will talk about you for being the paranoid, delusional person that you are.
I partly agree with the previous posts that the word "persecution" is probably inappropriate for the social discomfort Christians might perceive in the Western workplace (when we might just need to grow thicker skins and shed our bunker mentality). However, it also appears to me that Christians could be more likely to recognize, or notice, or remember social slurs. Are others more ready to ignore them or throw them into the memory hole? There seem to be insufficient data in this brief summary. Also, Christians appear more likely to deal directly with the person who has (been perceived to have) offended them, which strikes me as a healthy posture, though we have some significant catching up to do with other religious groups. Perhaps Christians at work care about how they are perceived, and how they perceive and deal with others.
Well said, Jim Ricker. It is not persecution when, for example, a gay co-worker does not invite you to his work wedding-shower after you have told him he is an abomination. It's not persecution when your employer offers medical benefits to same-sex partners of employees. We have been culturally dominant, and now that that is shifting fast, we hot-house flower American Christians too easily feel like we are being persecuted. We are wrong.
There is certainly hostility toward Xians and the cross in this day and age but, conservatives generally have a bunker mentality and see any shifted from preferred status as 'persecution.' All conservatives? No. The 'vast' majority of Xians? No, but a goodly portion yes. We are a people that have an expectation to be the majority (at least culturally) and have a status 'above' the 'others' and when that is threatened after a few hundred years of history, we think this is persecution and we bring shame to the martyrs and His glorious name.
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