I’ve been fortunate enough to serve as a pastor in Texas, Virginia and now Maryland. There is something vastly different about being here in Maryland the last few years with regard to the Christian faith and the culture in which we live.
In Texas and Virginia there was a noticeable respect for the Christian faith. Among those who did not go to church there was still a sense that Christianity was likely true but most people just had a hard time at letting God be God in their lives. There is no doubt a type of difficulty that comes with sharing the gospel in this environment. In many cases you’re re-educating or reminding people of the truths of the gospel.
Then you come north.
In my experience there is something that happens in the water when you’re driving on the I-95 corridor and you’re approaching Washington D.C.. In that area it seems a gigantic cultural divide takes place. In my denomination, the SBC, we have come to see everything north of this area as the “North East” region. Yes we know where the Mason Dixon line is but for the record most people around here have moved on from the Civil War and live in modern day America. Classifying Maryland as North East seems appropriate.
Baltimore is a salad bowl of diversity. Our city has over 225 distinct neighborhoods. Outside the city our diversity doesn’t stop. We live a few miles north of the city line and my son is in a public school with people from all over the world. Kristy and I love it! We love the fact that Caleb is being exposed to so much diversity simply by going to school. We enjoy the fact that our neighborhood often feels like the break room at the United Nations. Our street alone is represented by African American, Caucasian, Hispanic, Indian, Asian and Russian families. Again, we love it.
When we were looking to place our son in a preschool a few years ago we looked into about 20 different schools. We settled on a school nearby that was not religious by nature. To be honest after we looked at most of the Christian preschools we just felt like the quality was not adequate. It’s a sad statement but for us it was worth paying more money to get a quality, clean place where the teachers are better paid and they seem to enjoy their jobs. Our daughter Ainsley is now at this school and we’ve been pleased with the care and education she has received.
This week I had an experience that placed a burden on my heart that I often had ignored. Over time