I’m a Christian, and I don’t believe that Christians in the USA today are persecuted even though some of us think that we are. I also think that it’s highly insulting and offensive to Christians in other countries who are being beheaded and suffering other atrocities to pretend that we are, in any way, as a privileged majority, suffering any kind of persecution. Christians are also not the only people around the world facing persecution, I mean just look at the refugee crisis.
I believe that we actually have a lot of privilege by being Christian and I think that it’s very important that we recognize that privilege. I’m seen as one of “the poor” and I have a house to live in with running water and electricity and food. I’ve experienced homelessness and it’s no fun, but right now even as one who is considered poor, I am so privileged that I am not in the position of many others around the world.
As the privileged majority and as followers of Christ, it is important that we be honest about things which means not pretending to be persecuted when we are not. The argument I’ve heard the most to prove Christian persecution in this country has been the argument that prayer has been taken out of schools. The truth is that prayer hasn’t been taken out of schools, we are just not allowed to require that prayers be a part of the school day and force kids who aren’t Christians to pray. Children who are Christians are allowed to pray at school and I’ve personally seen it on many occasions in my experiences with U.S. public schools.
Not being allowed to force our beliefs on another human being is not persecution, it’s basic human rights. Even God doesn’t require people to believe, God gives them a choice, and there are some who choose not to believe. If God themself allows people the privilege of choice, why should we try to force our beliefs on others? We should be living in such a way that people see the beauty of God’s way and want to be Christians, but we’re too busy claiming persecution, or fighting imaginary wars on Christmas, or pitching a fit that the government passed a bill saying we can’t do what we like.
Christians in America enjoy massive privilege, and it’s time for us to realize that and own it and strive to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength and to love our neighbors as ourselves, without claiming fake persecution. The persecution complex isn’t cute and it actually hinders our message because people can see through the bullshit. Let’s change the world by doing justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly with our God. And maybe if we do that, we might one day experience what persecution really is.