Is it an accomplishment to NOT believe in something? Is anti-faith harder than Christian faith? Do you deserve recognition for thinking it's more likely that circumstance and luck created an entire universe instead of believing in an all powerful God?
Evidently, yes. The Wilson County, Tn fair has decided that their annual God and Country day which previously offered discounts to individuals who brought a bulletin from their church service, now says that discount is offered to atheists as well. So if you believe and go to services, you get a discount. If you don't believe, you get a discount. But if you believe and don't go to services, you pay full price.
As a Christian I am constantly amazed at the hypocrisy of non-believers. Yes, that's what I said. Because atheists will pitch a fit if their child is asked to sit quietly while other children around them pray. Atheists hate to spend money that reads, "In God We Trust." Atheists won't recite a Pledge of Allegiance that includes, "One Nation, Under God..." Yet atheists will stick their stickers on the back of their car proclaiming the ignorance of Christians. Little dinosaurs chewing on an ichthus. A Darwinian ichthus with feet and teeth that reads, "reality bites." Bill Maher on HBO who constantly rails against evangelical Christians and their religious crutch.
Yet Christians are said to be intolerant. Christians are said to be bigots. Christians are said to be arrogant and pushy. Some are these things, that's true. And unfortunately I believe that people like that are not parallelling the life of Christ or His teachings.
In my sincerest effort to be objective, I will still side with the pushy Christian over the pushy atheist because of one simple difference: motivation. The motivation of the pushy Christian is the (hopefully) sincere love of another's soul and concern over where they will spend the eternity in which the Christian believes. Their motivation is love. The motivation of the pushy atheist is the destroy the belief system of another. To reveal their perceived ignorance and enlighten them to a life where death is the ultimate end and hope rests in what you accomplish only in your job or procreation. Their motivation is malicious.
Why does my belief offend you atheists? If I believe in God and Christ and therefore attempt to live a life of mercy, grace, peace and love, how does that negatively affect your life?
Consider two extremes.
If all the world were believers in God and Christ and practicers of a Christian faith, how bad would the world be? Would their still be nuts? Sure. Misdirected zealots who misapply scripture or flat misunderstand it are nothing new. But most people would be trying to serve their fellow man and work with them to achieve a common goal of heaven.
If all the world were atheists how good would the world be? The motivation to serve others would have to be completely altruistic. There would be no goal to achieve other than that of a temporary life that would end in around 70 years. But the prevailing motivation would be Freud's "id" part of the personality. Self-serving, self-pleasuring, animalistic motivations that have very little regard for others except that which is chemically created by brain function controlled completely by chance.
So here's my proposal. If you wish to be an atheist, so be it. As a believer I don't want you to be a non-believer. I want you to serve God and work toward a heaven I believe exists. But I won't force your belief because I know I can't make you believe in anything. So leave me and my beliefs alone. Don't feel like some intellectual police force whose sole mission is to enlighten anyone you believe to be ignorant or unintelligent. Go your way and I'll go mine. I'll remember you in my prayers.