Controversially Christian

Hey PLA,

I hope the semester’s treating you all well, and that you’re enjoying the colder weather as much as I am.

I recently submitted a job application packet to my English 202D professor. The assignment included a memo, cover letter and a resume. In my resume I included all of my relevant experiences -internships, languages, G.P.A. -and at the very bottom I included a short list of extracurriculars to give the potential recruiter some info on who I am and what I’m interested in. Most of my leadership involvement at Penn State has been through Campus Crusade for Christ, so I was eager to list the responsibilities I’ve held with Cru. When I got my assignment back though, most details were in order except that a circle and the words “be careful” surrounded the faith-based responsibilities on my resume.

Believe me; I’m not naive. I knew that including info on my faith had the potential to raise eyebrows. I had contemplated not putting it on there, but I also feel pretty strongly that I shouldn’t be ashamed of my personality, and more importantly, that I shouldn’t be ashamed of my faith either. I think that our society has this crazy idea that if you hire someone who puts “Christian” on their resume, they will surely try to convert you and the rest of your corporation. I’m pretty sure that as open as I am about being a Christian, I’ve never tried to forcibly convert any of the other members of the PLA.

So what’s the issue? Scripture tells me not to be ashamed of my identity as a Christian, yet most social forces tell me to view faith as controversial, and something to be played down. But if I choose faith first, then does that mean that I’m condemned to be viewed as threatening? I could probably get used to that. But I wish that our society valued boldness more than it feared controversy.

Thankfully any trial I could be put through here in the western world is barely consequential compared to the violent persecution that Christians undergo today in China, Turkey, India and other parts of Asia and the Middle East. 

Go State, Beat Iowa

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3 thoughts on “Controversially Christian

  1. STEFAN PETER ORZECH says:

    Harry-
    I found your discussion intriguing cheifly because in American society the term “religious stereotype” so often applies to Muslims. Less often do we view Christianity through a stereotypical lens.
    In your opinion, I wonder, what affected your experience more: do we live in a society that (generally speaking) advocates the ‘privacy’ of religion, or do you find that some religions are deemed more acceptable than others (the more obvert prejudices aside)?

  2. STEFAN PETER ORZECH says:

    *overt prejudices…(finger slip!)

  3. MELISSA IDELLE DOBERSTEIN says:

    Harry,
    I found this interesting as well. I think that we as a society would not mix work and religion and that there is a separation there.
    Melissa

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