Friday, August 26, 2011

Religion and children..

*DISCLAIMER: When I use the word "religion" please understand I mean " relationship with God". Its just easier to write religion.

About 90% of the blogs I read, the writer is religious (or aka as noted on the disclaimer have a relationship with God). No, I don't discriminate. I guess I just tend to flow that way and like that. I am sure I could read a blog post about someone bashing God, but it would be a one time read only and I wouldn't go back only because that train of thought doesn't interest me. Don't get me wrong, I would love to pick the brain of someone that truly doesn't believe in God to see how they got to be that way and what drove them to that. If it was upbringing or outside influence or what and their reasoning, but since religion is such a hot subject, I have no one jumping up and down volunteering to be my lab rat, its a question, I will probably die with. Oh well!!!

But anyways, very rarely will people talk about it openly. I don't know why that it. Sometimes they will mention they believe in God or even post a pin they pinned about it, but really deeply talk about it?? I dont see it, only on the blogs geared towards religion discussion.
People will talk about mommy wars, their stance on gay marriage, the war and so many other controversial topics, but this one people tend to stay away from it. I guess all the past wars have left a very deep reminder on people on what it can happen when there is religious disagreement. Since I don't shy away from anything, was born without a filter, I am going to talk about it.

First a little background..I was raised with Catholicism forced down my throat. I failed first communion 4 times to the dismay of my grandparents. I am 30 and have never done first communion. Oh the shame. Then through my teenage years, my parents started to follow Allan Kardec teaching (if you are not familiar with it, the basic believe is Reincarnation. You are born blind on this life..well last lifetime you caused someone to loose an eye. Whatever you do here, you will pay for it. This lifetime or the next). I lived in their house, and under 18, I got dragged to it. I actually enjoyed it and a lot of my questions got answered and I got some explanations that today I still carry it with me.

Through my teenage angst a couple of suicide attempts, near death experiences and lot of soul searching, a huge spiritual transformation happened. I accepted Christ into my heart and decided loving God and His son was enough for me. I didn't need anything else. I could make mistakes, not have to beat myself for it, ask for forgiveness and I was going to be just fine. My life did a 180. Not long after, I read "The Purpose Driven life" got thousands more questions answered, deepen my relationship with God, and found a new way to talk to them. Oh yeah I don't say "Hail Mary's" anymore. I am the one going "Seriously God?? What the heck where you thinking?? I am not happy with this decision at all". I am sure I will cause my mother's heart to stop someday soon and she is pretty close to bathing me in holy water. But I love it. Its who I am, the true me. I feel so much closer to God because I am being me, if I tried anything else, I would be faking it, which is what I did in my early years, and which God was aware.

Well I am 30 years old, with a extremely strong relationship with God, I believe Jesus was our savior, I believe my life is 10 thousand times better because of it. I don't pray, I have conversations with God, honest raw ones.I could never recite a passage. I only go to church when I feel like it, I love a good margarita, I can make a sailor blush, I smoke (which I am trying so hard to quit), I love some dancing and some fornication ;) (with my husband only of course), I am not that much of a hussy, don't worry. But that is who I am and I am sure God loves me just the same, heck he made me and gave me free will. Even though at times, I am sure he regrets that decision.

Back to the point, this relationship with God is the most important thing in my life. Above my relationship with my husband and my children, because I know this is the only guaranteed thing in this life. Tomorrow my husband could easily trade me for Megan Fox and my children could pass. So this relationship with God is my foundation and the most important thing I have because it will keep me alive, sane, and help me get through anything in this world.

This relationship is the most important thing I want to give to my children. I feel this is all they need in life. If I can give them this, I feel like my job as a mother is done because with this relationship, even when I screw up, they will forgive me like God has forgiven them. They wont ever need anything because He will provide for them in fully with whatever they need. They will be satisfied with however much or little they have, they will go through trials and come out triumph on the other side.

How to do that is my main question and what causes me many sleepless night. I absolutely can not fuck this up. Under no circumstances. This I need to get it right because talking to many, one of the main reasons they turned away from God, Jesus and religion, is the way it was delivered, by their parents, their peers or whatever. It was shoved down their throats and they disagreed with. I can completely understand that. I only feel comfortable in a non denominational church, anywhere else I feel like I am being judged and don't believe with a lot of their teachings. I march to the beat of my own drum and feel everyone should do the same. So, I need to find a way to teach my children how to love and adore God and to believe in all the good Jesus has done for them.

I have talked to other parents and some of them wont teach their kids anything and just let them find their own way. I am glad that works for them, but that would never work for me. My job as a mother is to teach and guide my children. I don't just hand them 2 knives, a rock and some flint and wave goodbye. I am there everyday teaching answering questions and I don't think it should be any different when it comes to religion.

At 30, hearing about too may religions confuse me, there is no way I can do that to my children. I want them to know the basics. God and Jesus anything else is not important. Not at all. Its very simple. You got those 2 in your heart, and you are good to go. Whatever happens next lifetime, whatever happened in the past, none of it matters and will make a difference.

How to teach them that? How to not screw up??

I have begun the teaching process when they were 2 and newborn and dh and I found an amazing non denom church in NC. We have always talked about God. My favorite expression is OMG. Ds hears it all the time, dd repeats it. I sometimes talk to God aloud "Please God hold off this rain just until we get home". Kids are like sponges they absorb everything.
Right after dh left, I came up with a prayer from pieces here and there to teach them the basics and it goes like this :

"Dear God, who made the planets, who made the earth, who made us, you are Jesus father and we thank you for given him to us. Thank you for our blessings, our house, our food, our family and friends, dad and all the good things you have given us. Always in our heart we love you. Amen". Then I tell them to say sorry for something and say thank you for something.

Sometimes they say thank you for he simplest things and sorry for very serious stuff (like the homeless man we just saw on the highway) that will tug at my heart. I want to instill that in them. The thankfulness and the realization that even though we make mistakes, we are forgiven. There is a passage in the Bible that says something about (I don't know the right wording so bear with me), but anyways, it pretty much sums up that if you give your children a strong foundation in our Lord, they might veer and move here or there, but they will always come back.

I have no idea if I am doing it the right way or the wrong way. Heck sometimes my son says his belly hurts because God is in there pushing on it. I seriously think he believes God is a full size person that lives inside his hear and pushes things around and sometimes causes his belly to hurt ;)
I hope I am doing the right thing and I really wished more people talked about this more often and it wasnt such a taboo subject because I truly believe through the exchange of ideas, is how we learn and grow.

Love A


Our Traveling Circus said...

Great topic, Ally!

We've been slowly introducing religion, Bible stories and prayers to T over the past few years. I do feel like we could be doing more with him, but I worry about it coming across as pushy or forced.

Suz said...

This post makes me glad I don't have kids yet! :) ahhh the pressure!

My only advice would be to pray about it (or converse with God- which is what all of my prayers look like which is why I hate praying out loud in public!) He has his hand on everything and he can guide you in this too. Don't think the pressure is all on your shoulders- he's got your back!

Ally said...

Yeah I feel like I am walking such a thin line. I want to shake him and explain to him how much awesome it is but at the same time I have to control myself because I am so afraid of being pushy.

and Suz you are right, I don't know why I didn't think to ask for guidance in this. I guess its because I was feeling like since he gave me this child it was my job to accomplish this alone. Saying that out loud seems so stupid but you are right. I am sure He will guide me better than I can ever do it alone. I just need to ask. Thank you so much!