Wednesday, September 23, 2009

God Fearing

I was reading a mommy-blog this morning and she was talking about her sister. I don't have a sister, nor do I have what I would call a very close relationship with my older brother and my my younger brother is still in college and we don't see him much, but man, I love that kid. Her post intrigued me, until she described her sister and I couldn't stop thinking about it after that. She described her sister as, "one of the nicest, most understanding and forgiving, God fearing, relaxed people I know." The "God Fearing" part just struck a chord with me.

I was raised catholic and have baptised my children in the catholic faith, but I wouldn't be what you would call a "good catholic girl." I had pre-marital sex (oh my!), lie and swear quite frequently (no, shit?) , don't take my children to church (gasp!), don't say grace before dinner (Rubba, dub, dub, thanks for the grub!), don't have my children say prayers before bed (now you want me to read a book and say a prayer? I've got to watch Glee at some point here.) and take the Lord's name in vain (Jesus!). But, let's get back to the God Fearing thing.

God Fearing...why is this considered a positive trait? Should I fear God, my creator? Should I live my life thinking that my choices are going to anger God to the point where he's going to be mad at me and I should fear his reaction?

I make thousands of choices and decisions per day. As a teacher alone, I answer 1,500 questions. It's not as simple as it sounds. For example, "Can I go to the bathroom?" The answer to this question is a simple yes or no, but the impact on the child is far from simple. I have to take into account, did I just let this person leave the room for something? Will they miss something important while they are gone? Did a friend of their's from another classroom walk by and that's why they want to go? Thousands of choices and decisions that I am held accountable by myself, my students, their parents, my principal and now also God? Should I fear that God wanted me to let little Johnny use the bathroom during his math test??

If I am God fearing, should I be authority fearing? Since God is seen as an authority figure, should I fear all authoritative figures? When I first began teaching, I was fearful of my principal. She was not supportive and caring. When she walked into my classroom, I froze, got beat-red and by the end of my two years there would break out in hives whenever she would talk to me, look at me or email me. Is this the kind of fear I should have for God?

As a catholic we are taught to fear authority. Do what the priest says, or you'll go to hell. Vote how the Bishop tells you to vote, or you'll GO TO HELL. Pray everyday, go to church every week, get married only once, don't have sex before you're married, read the bible, respect your elders, Go to CCD, give money to the church out of your paycheck even if you're on food stamps, be pro-life, don't use contraceptives, don't use the Lord's name in vain, don't ask questions or YOU'LL GO TO HELL.

What kind of God is like that?

Not my God.

I am a very spiritual and religious person, but I don't fear God. Do you?

Thursday, September 10, 2009


This makes me want to go back to high school, start a glee club and sing my heart out.