Cut Off In Mid-

A Godly Favor

Hmmm, perhaps He’ll finish your sentence for you?

This amounts to a chain letter in meme form. On the one hand, it’s almost not worth it to spend time talking about how pointless chain letters are. On the other hand, this meme promises that if you pass it on, you will curry God’s favor. Since that runs counter to most of what I remember being taught about God when I was young, I thought it might be worth a mention.

Now I’ll admit up front: I haven’t been to church in a long, long while. I’ve also spent a good amount of time in this blog poking gentle (and not-so-gentle) fun at fundamentalist conservative Christians – you know, the ones who feverishly attempt to legislate their personal religious convictions for the “good” of everybody else. But I don’t want to give the impression that I dislike Christians in general. I grew up Christian, and at the risk of protesting too much, some of my best friends are Christians. When I see this meme, which, in my opinion, should be offensive to good-hearted God-fearing folk everywhere, I have to take it apart – if not for my sake, then for the sake of the Christian people I care about.

Although I haven’t cracked open a Bible in many years, I seem to remember that currying God’s favor was never so simple as telling everybody how much you love Him. Best I recall, the Christian lifestyle was meant to be an arduous one, full of self-sacrifice and personal reflection and service to others. The reward, so the Bible says, is an eternity in Heaven, not some personal favor to be granted immediately. I’m not saying it would be outside of God’s power to do unto you a solid, but my understanding of the Big Guy’s modus operandi was that you should not expect immediate gratitude. And He never works according to human schedules.

So if you really believe in God – and not just any god but the God of Abraham; the God described in Christian theology – then this meme makes no sense. By passing this meme on, you’ve implied that you believe God is ultimately controllable by human actions, and that regardless of His ultimate plan for your life, you can get some sort of free gift just by showing all your friends how into Him you are. If that’s what you truly believe, then share away…but be aware, the God of your religion is different from the God of most other Christian denominations.

If you don’t believe in God, then this meme still makes no sense. But that pretty much goes without saying.

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