Monday, June 04, 2007

A different generation...

I normally don't write about things that are personal or close to home, but I feel compelled to today. You see, my Grandmother passed away this morning. Though that was only the catalyst for this post.

I loved my Grandmother very much. And believe that she was a great person at heart. She just grew up in a very different time and in a very different world than I did. She was in her 70's when she died, meaning she was born shortly after the great depression. She saw cars, telephones, televisions and computers become mainstream. She grew up in a world where wars were actually fought face to face - instead of from hundreds of miles away with tremendous technology.

She also grew up in a world where God Fearing Christians were the norm. Which leads me to this post. One of the most interesting and unusual things I ever knew her to believe was this: "If your church doesn't have Christ's name in it - he won't know how to find you when he comes back and your congregation will perish in Hell."


It's unfathomable to me, though I was raised a conservative Christian, to carry such a narrow view of "the Second Coming." I have a very broad view of religion and consider myself more 'spiritual' than 'religious' these days. But my Grandmother, and those in her generation grew up with a VERY narrow view of the world. Without Internet. Without CNN. Without BBC news on U.S. TV's and without routine air travel to other countries.

The world they knew didn't have a lot of tolerance for people who weren't like them. In some ways, the world I live in today is much the same. I like to think we've come a long way, but then I'm reminded of the many ways in which we haven't.

It gives me a new perspective on matters like God and gays and what makes people hate. But it doesn't change my resolve that above all else, we should treat others as we would like to be treated. And the greatest gift of all is love.

On those two things, I'm sure my Grandmother would agree.