Do you ever feel that you are forced to do things without even realizing it? Well this is how I feel about my religion. I grew up in a small town, the type of town where everyone knows everyone else. The majority of people in my hometown practice Christianity. You are constantly watched by many, as well as judged. Because so many are Christian, a family is judged based upon their attendance in church: if your family attends church, they are considered a “good family.” How ridiculous is that!?!
This whole thing started with my grandma. My grandmother forced my father and his siblings to attend church every weekend. Even if my dad had to work the late shift at the local gas station, he was required to go and if not, then my grandma would have some sort of personal punishment towards him. It is sad, but she still controls her children this way. She asks each weekend who was in church and if they did not go, she makes a mental note of it.
Unfortunately, this “trait” got passed down to my father. And now my brother and I are the ones being pushed to go to church. And my grandma is checking to make sure as well. If we do not attend, my dad gets angry and states, “well don’t ask to do any special activity for the week then…” So I am being punished and feeling guilty for letting God down as well as my family. Now in college, I realize how screwed up that actually is! Why should I be forced to attend church if I pray and thank God everyday for what I have? What is so important about church? If you have faith then why do I need to show up to prove to others my own beliefs? I once heard that if you do not want to do something, then God does not want you to do it.
What do you think? Should we be forced attend church? What is the importance of church?