Welcome to Roger’s Take on Religion: An Inclusive Perspective
What if Noah had refused to allow passengers on his Ark?
Amid a flood of near-biblical proportions, megachurch pastor Joel Osteen’s refusal to open the doors of his 16,000 seat church to Hurricane Harvey refugees paints him in this light.
This is unfortunate, not just because people were turned away but because it emphasizes the church as a building. The church as we all know is not a building. It’s people – the “people of God.”
Here’s My Take: Some say I’m too hard on religious folk for their self-serving beliefs including the “prosperity gospel” preached by Rev. Osteen that marginalizes the poor and makes a mockery of Christ.
However, in times of crisis, “God’s people” come through. Judgments are put aside, color makes no difference and for a few moments, the Good Samaritan is remembered.
A children’s pastor saw refugees seeking shelter at a gas station. She didn’t take them to her church building. She invited all 16 of them, and their seven dogs, to stay in her home. “There was no place where they could go,” she said.
Religion is not about open buildings. It’s about open hearts.