It's Christian Against Christian in my inbox

Gah, just got this from my aunt in Florida:

Prayer can move mountains, why not Obama?

Being dismayed recently when a family member of mine said to me with great resignation that Obama will take the presidency. These words came from someone who in the past has been a great prayer warrior.

What is happening was my question??? Why are we Christians settling and not issuing a battle cry and falling to our knees and taking our country back?

We allow ourselves to be stripped of the right to pray at school functions and in school, we have the 10 commandments removed from government places and are told we cannot pray in school, all the while providing public prayer places for Muslims. What in the world is going on and why are we being apathetic?

Why aren't we praying? Our God is a mighty God who is waiting patiently for us to raise our voices to heaven to stop the tide of the anti-Christ actions in our world today. Now we find we have a charismatic candidate for president who does not respect our flag and refuses to wear one on his lapel except when it becomes politically expedient and whose own wife and pastor that he loves profess to have strong anti-white feelings, and we sit back and say "it is a given, we can do nothing."

There has never been a time in 2000 years that we can do nothing, never a time that we must sit back and allow the evil in men's and women's hearts to take over our world. We should be very afraid because our apathy is leading us to perdition.

It is time for all Christian Americans to raise the battle cry and take our nation back. Maybe McCain on his own cannot defeat Obama, but our God can and He will if we take to our knees in prayer and raise a mighty cry to the heavens to "Save us O Lord." We have the power to change the course of this election and to keep a man as suspect as Barak Obama from leading our country to who knows where with his message of "change" - a change which I fear will be away from our Christian ideals and away from Christ and further away from one nation under God.

We are great at passing stories and pictures around the internet, but where are our prayers and prayer warriors praying to stop this tide of Barak Obama? God parted the red sea, Jesus raised himself from the dead, and we can bring our country back to its Christian roots and stop the move to the rise of Muslims in our country. We can stop our country from being "under Allah," but we must begin to pray, to pray as if our country and our lives depended on it, because they do. We can stop all these atrocities against God's commands that have taken root in our country through something as simple as sincere prayer, a call to God to deliver us, to forgive us our sins of apathy and to protect us from the evil that is upon us.

Okay prayer warriors, here is your challenge, start those prayer chains. Get the spiritual power working on our behalf and stop Barak Obama the proper way, by calling on our God to save us from the deception that charismatic preaching is using to lead us on the wrong path. Stop those who would take God out of our country and our government. Raise up good men to lead us and protect us.

George Bush is being buffeted because he has fought a holy war against the evils that attack us and we should not be surprised because a prophet is not honored in his own country. But we should not rest on our laurels and allow ourselves to be taken further off the path of Christianity and to have God removed from our presence in our schools, courts, government and businesses.

Invite God into the fray. Ask that His power rest upon us and give us the victory. Ask him to raise up a mighty army to defend us and to protect our country as he did in days of old. Let us be victorious beginning NOW. The battle is His but we must call on Him without ceasing and unite our voices and hearts in prayer and fasting.

Please pass this around to all people of prayer that you know and maybe, just maybe a more eloquent person of prayer will write something better and more inspiring and even the rocks will shout that Jesus is Lord and our Mighty God is with us, bringing the victory for us and ultimately for Him.

"Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." I Thess 5:16-18

....Continuous Prayer is the answer to this attack on the USA....
Please pray the Will of God will prevail through our continuous prayers to HIM...

Remember Prayer Can... Move Mountains

What do I even say to that??? I don't want to be silent and let her think I agree with this. OTOH, I don't necessarily want to make waves. On the other other hand, I'd like to stand up for my beliefs and say that yes, I'll be praying, too, as will lots of other people -- for an Obama victory (never mind the part about me praying to a God they don't believe in).

I just don't get it. What are these people so afraid of? What do they think is going to happen if Obama wins--mandatory abortions for women and forced conversions to Islam or something? Mind you, he's never been a Muslim, so the "One Nation, Under Allah" is just preying/praying (haha, get it?) on people's fears.

Do they think their precious daughters are going to be forced to marry "n*****s"? And what is it going to say about their faith if they pray and pray and pray, and Obama still wins? That their God doesn't care about our presidential elections? Or that he cares more about the Christians who were praying for Obama than the ones who were praying for McCain?

Just the other week I got an email from Dean Smith endorsing Obama and calling him a "a patriotic American, a committed Christian" and "a good family man." With people like Smith and the Devout Democrats showing that (to quote a certain senator) "We worship an awesome God in the blue states," what are we to make of these prayer warrior entreaties, and what is the measured response, other than thank Deity-of-your-choice that they're not from the whackos praying for McCain to keel over in office so we can have President Palin?

Do the people who write these "prayer warrior" emails ever stop to consider that for THEIR prayers to be "answered," other people, other good Christians, have to have their prayers "denied"? What kind of a religious view is that, anyway?

Are we really lining up red and blue "prayer warriors" like a gigantic game of Rock-em Sock-em Robots? (Boy that ref dates me.) Or is it a rematch of Elijah versus the priests of Baal? What if the priests of Baal win this time? Oh noes!

And the Prayer Warrior theme aside, did you note the racism? The little barb about his wife and (now FORMER) pastor having "strong anti-white feelings" just made me sad-- well angry, too, or I wouldn't be posting this.

Which brings me back to my question: What's the correct response to this sort of thing? Is there one?

Comments

WWJD?

Forgive them, for they know not what they do.
_____________________________________

Doubts about Dole?

Therein lies the rub, I'm afraid

People like my aunt will just turn that phrase around and use it on ME.

Do you actually think that Jesus

would attack other religions or even ask people to go to war because of someone's ideals? Sorry but the Jesus I read about was a lot more pure and a lot less racist than that.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

He may have forgiven them but he would have

tried to educate them too.

Angry grrl, you write so well, your thoughts are righteous and pure and well...right. Press the "reply all" button and discredit all those outright lies and innuendos.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

Thank you

I'm working on a coherent response that's not amazingly angry and instantly alienating, but I gotta tell ya, it's not easy. :/

For what it's worth - my advice is you've got to make waves.

Sometimes you've got to make waves, even when you don't want to. The amount of outright misinformation contained in the email you shared is disturbing enough; the fact that "prayer warriors" are being called out to battle makes me queasy. So do the words "Take our country back". Whose country? If I don't believe the same way, or in the same god, or in any god at all, am I not American? WTF?

You have a gentle way with words, A.G. Use those words to make gentle waves. But make your point.

Gentle waves indeed

That's my goal for today, to try and craft a response that educates and illuminates, if possible.

The correct response is to educate them!

The U.S. was not founded as a Christian nation. The founding fathers went out of their way to minimize (and in a lot of cases omit) references to any god. They wrote documents to protect this country from being overpowered by any one religious group. You can't allow anyone, regardless of whether they are a friend or a family member, perpetuate lies about America being a Christian nation. There is a purposeful separation of church and state, and I find it amazing that there are so many adult Americans that never learned that in school.

Someone obviously needs to sit this person down and let them know that there are plenty of people in the world with names like Obama that are Christian. Furthermore, being black with a "foreign sounding" last name does not automatically make you any less American or less Christian than anyone else.

Sometimes you just have to correct misinformation. In this case, this person is clearly misinformed, and someone needs to inform them of the truth. If you have to dig up historical documents, and read the Federalist papers from end-to-end to prove a point, it may be worth it.

You're right, of course

The thing is, people like my aunt "know" these "facts" about Obama much the same way that they "know" Jesus -- it's more a matter of faith and belief, and no amount of telling them how things actually are out here in the reality-based world is going to have a dent in that armor of willful ignorance.

Doesn't mean I'm not going to try and come up with some sort of reasoned, rational response. I just don't know how effective it'll be at doing anything besides straining family relations.

My spiritual path does not allow for unsolicited prayer

because one's relationship with God (by whatever name you know IT) is personal and sacred. Praying for people who do not want you to pray for them is spiritual trespass.

Besides, God does not accept Prayer Spam.

Resistance is Fertile

Resistance is Fertile

Perfect.

Prayer spam. Spiritual trespass.

That's pretty much my belief as well, heiderose1. After all, those prayer warriors wouldn't want pagans performing rituals or spells on their behalf, without their permission or knowledge, would they?

Of course not. Same diff.

This is from the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer...

A Prayer for Elections

Almighty God, to whom we must account for all our powers and privileges: Guide the people of the United States (or of this community) in the election of officials and representatives; that, by faithful administration and wise laws, the rights of all may be protected and our nation be enabled to fulfill your purposes; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

I would emphasize "the rights of ALL." That's why this is so simple to me, and I'm tempted to write a LTE on this subject. But reading recently about GOP officials attacking the increase of early voting sites on Sunday in Cumberland Co. and one GOP official saying in the Fayetteville Observer: He added that early voting also allows uninformed citizens to vote, which he argued “cheapens” the outcome.

God willing, 100% of people voted. The sick, the poor, the oppressed, the weary, the weak, the hungry, the thirsty, and those in need. These are the people that I suppose the GOP would declare "uninformed" voters who "cheapen" elections. Jesus Christ's ministry on earth was to these people, and for the party which supposedly has a monopoly on the Gospel, this sickens me. We all know the people who followed Jesus on earth would not be on the Republican voter rolls (well, maybe the tax collectors!). But I would pray that all people in this country would vote, that all faithful people would know that God's charge to us is to live our faith, and that certainly, at minimum, means voting. And that means every church, mosque, synagogue...all the children of Abraham.

So how to respond? I would use the Beatitudes. That those who Jesus prayed for would finally be able to have a political leader that showed the same kind of love and compassion as Jesus did.

And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. 2Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:

3"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4Blessed are those who mourn,
For they shall be comforted.
5Blessed are the meek,
For they shall inherit the earth.

6Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.
7Blessed are the merciful,
For they shall obtain mercy.
8Blessed are the pure in heart,
For they shall see God.
9Blessed are the peacemakers,
For they shall be called sons of God.
10Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake,
For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

11"Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. 12Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Phillip Hunter Gilfus,
Member(NC), Democratic National Committee

Thanks for that prayer, I may have to add it to the below

(This may exceed the comment length limit--but here goes.) This is my first draft of a response:

Barack Obama is not a secret Muslim.

http://urbanlegends.about.com/library/bl_barack_obama_muslim.htm

In his own words: "I am a Christian, and I am a devout Christian. I believe in the redemptive death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. I believe that faith gives me a path to be cleansed of sin and have eternal life. But most importantly, I believe in the example that Jesus set by feeding the hungry and healing the sick and always prioritizing the least of these over the powerful." --Christianity Today interview, January 2008

The flag pin thing:

http://abcnews.go.com/politics/story?id=3690000

In his own words: "You know, the truth is that right after 9/11, I had a pin," Obama said. "Shortly after 9/11, particularly because as we're talking about the Iraq War, that became a substitute for I think true patriotism, which is speaking out on issues that are of importance to our national security, I decided I won't wear that pin on my chest.
"Instead,I'm going to try to tell the American people what I believe will make this country great, and hopefully that will be a testimony to my patriotism."

Honestly, anyone can buy a $1.99, made-in-China “Support the Troops” car magnet or flag pin. It’s a meaningless gesture. My company sends free books to soldiers at home and abroad. That’s patriotic. Voting is patriotic. Giving blood is patriotic. Wearing a red-white-and-blue fashion accessory shows the world what’s on your lapel, not what’s in your heart.

The anti-white thing:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23690567/

In his own words: “I have already condemned, in unequivocal terms, the statements of Reverend Wright that have caused such controversy. For some, nagging questions remain. Did I know him to be an occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy? Of course. Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes. Did I strongly disagree with many of his political views? Absolutely – just as I'm sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed.

The fact that so many people are surprised to hear that anger in some of Reverend Wright's sermons simply reminds us of the old truism that the most segregated hour in American life occurs on Sunday morning.

In fact, a similar anger exists within segments of the white community. Most working- and middle-class white Americans don't feel that they have been particularly privileged by their race. Their experience is the immigrant experience – as far as they're concerned, no one's handed them anything, they've built it from scratch. They've worked hard all their lives, many times only to see their jobs shipped overseas or their pension dumped after a lifetime of labor. They are anxious about their futures, and feel their dreams slipping away; in an era of stagnant wages and global competition, opportunity comes to be seen as a zero sum game, in which your dreams come at my expense.

Like the anger within the black community, these resentments aren't always expressed in polite company. But they have helped shape the political landscape for at least a generation.

Just as black anger often proved counterproductive, so have these white resentments distracted attention from the real culprits of the middle class squeeze – a corporate culture rife with inside dealing, questionable accounting practices, and short-term greed; a Washington dominated by lobbyists and special interests; economic policies that favor the few over the many.

And yet, to wish away the resentments of white Americans, to label them as misguided or even racist, without recognizing they are grounded in legitimate concerns – this too widens the racial divide, and blocks the path to understanding.

I have asserted a firm conviction – a conviction rooted in my faith in God and my faith in the American people – that working together we can move beyond some of our old racial wounds, and that in fact we have no choice if we are to continue on the path of a more perfect union.”

This "Christian" nation:

According to the U.S. Department of State, "Turkey has been officially secular since 1924, although well over 95 percent of the population is Muslim." Here in the US, according to the 2000 census, about 75 percent of the population self-identifies as Christian. Turkey is a secular state because its constitution says so. The First Amendment accomplishes the same for the United States, making us an officially secular nation.

History, not wishful thinking, tells us that our founding fathers created a secular state, in which no religion, despite its majority status, has any special privilege or status compared with any other religion or with atheism.

In fact, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and their allies in Virginia’s religious cohort brought an end to that state’s established church and passed the Virginia Statute for Religious Liberty, a 1786 law that grants religious freedom to everyone.

The religious breakdown in the US is roughly like so:
Christianity: 159,030,000 or 76.5%
Nonreligious/Secular: 27,539,000 or 13.2%
Judaism: 2,831,000 or 1.3%
Islam: 1,104,000 or 0.5%
Buddhism: 1,082,000 or 0.5%
Agnostic: 991,000 or 0.5%
Atheist : 902,000 or 0.4%
Hinduism: 766,000 or 0.4%
Unitarian Universalist: 629,000 or 0.3%
Wiccan/Pagan/Druid: 307,000 or 0.1%
Spiritualist : 116,000
Native American Religion: 103,000
Baha'i: 84,000
New Age: 68,000
Sikhism: 57,000
Scientology: 55,000
Humanist: 49,000
Deity (Deist): 49,000
Taoist: 40,000
Eckankar: 26,000

This troubles me when I see phrases like “take back our country!” Take it back from whom? Are the almost 3 million Jews not Americans too? Or the 1 million Buddhists? How about the three-quarters of a million Hindus? Not to mention the 100,000 or so who list their religion as Native American—after all, they were here first anyway. Are they not “true” Americans?

And what about the organizations whose prayer warriors are praying FOR Mr. Obama? There’s the Matthew 25 Network, a community of Catholics, Protestants, Evangelicals and Pentecostals, who believes that Christians are called to “engage the world as it is, while seeking after and hoping for God’s Kingdom.”
http://matthew25.org/about.htm

Also, the Devout Democrats, a grassroots organization “dedicated to showing Americans that a vote for a Democrat is a vote for progressive religious values.”
http://devoutdemocrats.org/?p=59#more-59

Are they not also “raising the battle cry to take this nation back”?

I’m afraid that I don’t understand the point in the email about Christianity being forcibly removed from schools, libraries, etc. This site lists almost 40 instances of lawsuits being brought by the ACLU to put Christian values back into our schools, libraries and workplaces:
http://www.aclufightsforchristians.com/

In closing, I would just note that like you, I am a person of faith. I disagree with your view, but that doesn't make this any less my country than it is anyone else's, nor does it mean my patriotism is "expedient."

Beautiful!

I knew you could do it; just right.

Don't be surprised if you don't hear anything for a few days. But be glad that you've set the truth out there.

Thanks and here goes

Hi Linda, well, fingers crossed, I'm about to send it.

I've got my fingers crossed for you, too.

It's hard to speak the truth to our elders whom we love, and risk their anger or disapproval, even when we are adults.

You go grrl. :)

Good points all AG

I hope you aunt will read them and realize the error of her email. Is she the sort of email forwarder (is that a word?) that likes flowers and kittens and angels? You could pretty it up...

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

Flowers, kittens, angels, and don't be a flaming douchebag ;)

Hahaha, oh yes, she and half our other relatives cc'ed on her "prayer warrior" spam are fans of big sparkly graphics, kittens, angels, twirly blinking text, and sappy synthesizer muzak. I couldn't bring myself to so decorate my email back to her; the glurge overflow would've drowned me. ;)

Have you heard anything back yet?

I use to get them from my mother until I started hitting reply all and disputing them. I haven't heard from her for a while now.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

No reply yet

I have a feeling that I stunned her into silence. If nothing else, at least she knows now not to send me that sort of thing.

Backlash

Don't you get the sense that the drumbeat is picking up, with increasing volume, of people hitting back on this "liberals hate America" and "this is a Christian nation" b.s. that has been itself gathering strength in the last eight years?

When I say "people hitting back" I guess I'm really referring to bloggers, but to some extent the MSM, too. And THAT, I think is because of the success of Obama's campaign and the increased attention that blogs are getting in general.

There's also a belated response from MSM to the fact that everyone in MSM who covers politics and everyone involved in national campaigns makes a point of watching Jon Stewart to get their dose of what bloggers are going to be talking about and what will be circulating around the web.

And Stewart is NAILING the rightwing for this crap about whose country this is, and who loves it or doesn't.

Don't you get the sense that

Don't you get the sense that the drumbeat is picking up, with increasing volume, of people hitting back on this "liberals hate America" and "this is a Christian nation" b.s. that has been itself gathering strength in the last eight years?

I do, and I think it's a good thing. We can't just roll over and let the right-wing extremists re-write history (a Christian nation) and control the idea of what's patriotic.

And I'm totally loving Jon Stewart of late. :) I'll be watching the Stewart-Colbert coverage on election night and hoping it turns out better than our Daily Show election night watching four years ago did.

And the right is hitting back even harder

See: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081025/ap_on_el_pr/christian_right_attacks for examples, including Focus on the Famblee's latest bleating, Letter from "A Christian in 2012," which talks about all the horrific things that will--not could, mind you--happen if Obama wins; among them, gay marriage in every state (presumably forced, snerk), Boy Scouts disbanded, Russia taking over Eastern Europe, Israel hit by nukes...

Good answer

And I do know some truly good, kind, Christian people. Sadly, they seem to be in the minority (I was raised Southern Baptist). Now I tend to agree with Ghandi, who said, "I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."