Thursday, March 20, 2008

Touching Fire

Frank Zappa: “My best advice to anyone who wants to raise a happy, mentally healthy child is: Keep him or her as far away from a church as you can.”

Wrong And Dead. It’s just not Frank’s decade anymore. He died 15 years ago, but his quotes live on internetually. There! I made a word, just as Frank used to enjoy doing.
Great musician, lousy human being in many respects. Someone who made a career out of shaking his fist at God isn’t going to win kudos from me.
To be fair, Frank is nearly right in this quote-but it depends on the church.
Here’s how I see it: God makes us, and we are wonderful. But then we reach what some call the “age of accountability” in which we lose our innocence, our sinful nature taking charge. This happens pretty young for most-about the time we tell our first lie, and know that we are lying. But it’s a given, as “All have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God.”
If a child reaches that age and is in a church which teaches salvation comes through faith in Jesus Christ, and His work on the cross, that child will be nurtured and raised on the fact that he or she needs salvation. And that child will not be told that they are already saved, simply by being born into a Christian family. Instead, they are taught Bible rules for living by parents who are also attempting to live up to those same rules, live by the same faith they are teaching their kids. Families, churches in right relationship with God. Result: ‘a happy, mentally healthy child’.
But then we have the other kids, ones who start out wonderful, but when they sin, as we all do, are taught that, in their church, everyone is going to Heaven if they act good and make it to church each Sunday, Saturday, whatever. Some are told that they must confess their sins to a priest and do penance to receive forgiveness-but the priest isn’t able to have even his own sins forgiven, so how can he administer forgiveness?
I’m not picking on Catholics here-any religion which bases Salvation on anything other that faith in Jesus Christ on His terms, not theirs…is dooming kids to hell, not just turning out maladjusted mentally unhealthy unhappy kids.
Frank grew up Catholic; see what a swell anti-Christian he turned out to be.
I grew up rotten in a Lutheran church, but God rescued me out of this world and that church. I pass it by every Sunday morning on my way to my church, to worship God with my church family. We have wonderful kids in our church, and though none of us are perfect, they are doing all right. Praise God for His Goodness to all of His children.

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