What is God: In Your Relationship?
By: Justin Klosky
My entire life I never gave much thought to God, Buddha, Allah, Jesus, Elohim, Elah, Adoni, or whatever you choose to call it, I just let people do what was best for them. As a Jew, I knew that there was some kind of God, but I didn’t live my life for it. I knew that there was some kind of higher power and I didn’t even know if I believed in it. Still figuring it all out, honestly. Something that has resonated with me over the last few months is that God IS all of us. We are the sun, the moon, the universe, and the energy that caused people to write about these amazing moments in history that got people believing in miracles. WE ARE THE MIRACLES. We all have the power to do amazing, Godly things. We all are God.
With that in mind why do so many religious people divide us all so much? Isn’t acceptance of all humankind, regardless of religion, what God wants? Don’t some religions believe that being gay is a reason to go to hell? If so why is gay marriage legal in 35 states now? Are all 35 of these states going to hell or is this just what our religious groups want us to believe? If you believe God created us all then why not accept us all the way we are without rules to divide us. The United Church of Christ wrote this article and has a very strict stance on this….OY! They basically say in the end of this article that as a “gay person” you must submit yourself and ask forgiveness from God. Forgive my friends God for being so dope and awesome and for the church for being so closed-minded.
I bring all of these questions up as it relates to being in a relationship. I never cared about being with someone of the same faith as I never was faced with how complicated it could be when dealing with someone of different “yolk” as some put it. Isn’t all yolk the same anyway when it comes out…call me naïve, but when you fall in love you should think about these few things before committing yourself deeper into your relationship.
Who am I Dating?
Are you dating the person or their family? I think both. Family plays a huge influence on your relationship whether you choose to believe so or not, so do friends. Get to really know your partners best friends as these people, most likely, will be the biggest influence on your partner when the going gets rough…and it always does. Weigh out the pros and cons of the influence that your partners religion has on you, you life and the possibility of your children. Trust me, it is better to be alone than to be with someone where you feel alone and isolated because of their faith and its influence over your relationship.
How “Faithful” Are They?
Come on…let’s be real here, there are so many “faithful” people that are so unfaithful to their religion. I was with someone who pretended to be of serious faith to her family when she was farthest from it in our life together. She slept with me the night we met, had sex before marriage, lived with me before marriage, hardly went to church, but when she was with her family wouldn’t touch me, wouldn’t have sex with me and went to church every Sunday. Don’t ignore the signs and makes sure that you have enough strength to walk away from something that doesn’t ring true to you even though it does for your partner. Life is too short to be out of integrity with yourself. Find out what is best for you before living what is best for someone else.
Can You Find a Middle Ground?
Most couples who start dating don’t think about religion playing into their relationship unless they have dealt with it in a prior relationship or they have been groomed by their families to marry of the same faith, but can two people who come from completely different religious backgrounds find a middle ground for their future? I think the answer is YES! It isn’t easy, and will require a little more work than any “normal” relationship, but finding a healthy balance of faiths in a relationship require a few simple things: understanding that your partner will most likely never believe the same things you do about their religion; respect, that even if they don’t believe it, neither you or they will say or do anything to damage the integrity of their beliefs; trust that neither one of you will force them to believe something they just don’t believe or care about and patience because let’s be real, learning about different peoples faiths can be exhausting at times and will truly test the strength of your relationship.
Date someone of your own faith! WOW! What a crazy idea? If this is hard for you then start making it easier. If it still is hard, even after you have tried making it easier for yourself, than maybe you don’t like people of your own faith and that is a whole other issue to be dealing with. We have all been programmed to think a certain way, act a certain way, believe certain things and a lot of this programming comes from fear; fear of the unknown, fear for darkness, fear of being alone, fear of fear itself. Some of our parents thought that instilling fear in us would make us better, safer, healthier human beings when in fact most of us who have lived these sheltered lives end up in the dark once they are let out of the house and then fumble around making mistakes, not being able to admit them in fear of what God will think.
All in all, make yourself happy. Life is too short to restrict love based off of rules and regulations that haven’t been updated in centuries. I love traditions! I love Christmas because the tree smells amazing in my home, I love Hanukkah because of what the story represents, even though some of it might have been fibbed, I love Easter because I like finding the candy in the eggs, not because I believe that Jesus was resurrected. Who am I to judge what stories are real or not from your book of history and who are you to judge me and tell me what you think I should believe. What I do know is I have my own opinions and my faith rests in human kind…a power that we all have witnessed. Whether it is this life, the next life or the life where I am no longer conscious of any of it, which is something I can believe.
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Justin Klosky is the Founder of the O.C.D. Experience, a lifestyle company providing organizational solutions for every aspect of your life. Published author of Organize & Create Discipline, TV host & expert on CBS’s The Talk! and has been seen on Anderson, Good Morning America, Huffington Post Live, Dr. Oz and more http://www.ocdexperience.com for all products and musings.