Sunday, June 01, 2008

Telling the "truth"????

CNN exclusive exit polls of voter in Puerto Rico were broadcast today and since I live in Puerto Rico I was curious to see what they would say. They did get right that Hillary would win the primary, which she did handily. From there on out it was very interesting.

According to those polled, 40 % attend church once a week and another 47 % attend regularly. If you add these numbers up, that means that 87 % of all those surveyed here attend church at least once a month and half of that number attend every week. We live on a typical street in a typical neighborhood in Puerto Rico, in Bayamon, a city of 224,000 that is part of the San Juan metro area. Our street is small--only 35-40 houses, but out of those 35 houses we are the only ones who attend church regularly, much less once a week. From my dealings with others in the urbanization (neighborhood to you) I don't think the numbers would be much different on other streets. So according to my unscientific, but real observations, I would say that only 13 % attend church even regularly, which is the opposite of the polls.

Why, you ask would people lie about something like this? At the risk of being annoying, let me say that "It's a Caribbean thing; you wouldn't understand". Very few people in the Eastern Caribbean will refuse a Bible study--they may not "have time" or "I'm a bit busy right now" but you just don't reject God or "church". The poll question was quite impolite in the first place, so do you really expect most people to acknowledge something that is culturally inexcusable. I don't remember the exact setting last week, but I was in a group of people discussing "church" and "christianity" when a lady remarked to me, "We're all Christians, aren't we?" Only in the sense that "we all" acknowledge there is a God. Years ago I asked a woman in Mexico if she was a Christian. Her reply is still with me, "What do you think? That we're animals? Of course we're Christians." She wasn't, but her definition of Christian was all those who acknowledge there is a God, no matter how they live.

We laugh about people "lieing" like that, but haven't you lied to yourself about your actions? I say to yourself because God knows what the real reason for our actions are. We can justify our actions, dress them up pretty, or even flat out lie about them, but the God of heaven is not deceived. He will judge us fairly, knowing the truth.


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