19 May Give me that Old Time Religion
The other day my mom and I came across an old applique pattern from 1905. The pattern was for dish clothes and there was a girl performing a different chore for each day of the week. One day was washing, one was ironing, another dusting and so on. What caught my attention was Sunday. There was no house work for Sunday the pattern simply showed a girl going to church. The book shared a little bit of background on each pattern and on this particular one it said that this was the typical household schedule. I couldn’t help but think how things have changed. A product that suggested the average household went to church on Sunday would cause great problems today. Social media would explode with angry posts and tweets from people who were hurt, offended, and emotionally injured by such an insensitive product. We would see hundreds of blogs written about it and eventually several lawsuits.
In the past several decades our society has turned hostile towards religion. Special interest groups see it as a threat to what they believe is progress. More and more religious liberties are taking a back seat to the bigoted agenda of small minority groups. There was a time when society believed in marriages that last, spouses who were faithful, men who didn’t feed their selfish desires with degenerate pornography, and women who wanted to be mothers. We understood that children need a father and a mother and that gender is biological and nonnegotiable. We knew that there is right and there is wrong and they are nonnegotiable as well. Many will argue that we are fine without religion. The truth is society benefits from religion, society needs religion. The following information comes from a report published by the Heritage foundation. It offers strong support for the benefits of and need for religion.
- Numerous sociological studies have shown that valuing Religion and regularly practicing it are associated with greater marital stability, higher levels of marital satisfaction, and an increased likelihood that an individual will be inclined to marry.
- Couples who acknowledge a divine purpose in their marriage are more likely to collaborate, to have greater marital adjustment, and to perceive more benefits from marriage and are less likely to use aggression or to come to a stalemate in their disagreements.
- Earlier research found that couples whose marriages lasted 30 years or more reported that their faith helped them to deal with difficult times, was a source of moral guidance in making decisions and dealing with conflict, and encouraged them to maintain their commitment to their marriages.
- Religious attendance is the most important predictor of marital stability.
- During the 1980s and 1990s, when religious practice decreased overall,the association between regular religious attendance and marital stability became even more apparent. Those who had ceased religious practice divorced 2.5 times more frequently than those who continued to attend religious services
- Compared with mothers who did not consider Religion important, those who deemed Religion to be very important rated their relationship with their child significantly higher.
- Greater religious practice of fathers is associated with better relationships with their
children, higher expectations for good relationships in the future, a greater investment in their relationships with their children, a greater sense of obligation to stay in regular contact with their children, and a greater likelihood of supporting their children and grandchildren.
- For example, men who attended religious services at least weekly were more than 50 percent less likely to commit an act of violence against their partners than were peers who attended only once a year or less.
- Compared with those who viewed themselves as being “very religious,” those who were “not at all religious” were far more likely to bear a child out of wedlock (among whites, three times as likely; among Hispanics, 2.5 times as likely; and among blacks, twice as likely).
- Individuals with higher levels of religious involvement have lower rates of abuse and addiction and are more likely to find long-lasting success if they ever struggled with any of these behaviors.
These are just a few of the many findings listed in the report. What is scary about our world today is that many will argue that these are not benefits, they are an outdated way of life. And that stability in marriages, families, and individual behavior does not matter. We are stuck in a grey zone where everything goes, good and bad are objective, and society is shaped by selfish individual desires. We need religion to get us out of the grey and back to right and wrong, good and bad. The decisions that our society is making right now will only harm families and individuals. Maybe it’s time we gave that “old time religion” a try.