Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Addition to "Tuesday's with Jesus #79"

My sister-in-law, Barbara, sent me this after reading this week's "Tuesday's".  
I'd like to share with you the experience I had last year as the sixth grade catechist.  I had a very "lively" student who was an active participant in every activity.  While his classmates wanted to clobber him on more than one occasion, they did look up to him for his knowledge and understanding of the Word and always wanted him on their 'team' when we had inter-active exercises.  While he was very familiar with the Bible in its' entirety, his passion was the Old Testament, particularly the persecution of the Israelites.  It wasn't until we discussed our different cultures/backgrounds that I understood why.  Jonathon's parents and grandparents were immigrants from Iraq where there was (and still is) absolutely no religious freedom.  He and his family don't take for granted the freedom most Americans do to study and profess our Christian beliefs because they knew first-hand what religious persecution is.  His parents and grand-parents could never hold a discussion of their religious beliefs (unless it was the Koran) and profession of their faith and belief in Jesus was in secret.  They most likely would have been executed had they been found out.  He told his classmates he studies the Bible every day - just because he can.  He and his family are Christians - because they can..  When it comes to faith, they certainly don't take it for granted.  They know what it's like to have it taken away.
That totally tells it all. Aside from the benefits of God's Word to our lives, we often forget the privilege that we have to live in this country where we are free to be Christians, free to profess our faith and free to study the Bible.  God Bless America!

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