Discussion in 'Allstar Cheerleading' started by kisscheer18, Nov 3, 2011.
You honestly took the words right out of my mouth!! <3
This thread also doesn't represent the entire population of Allstar cheer either....For real just think about it. This is but an incredibly small percentage of the population. You have no idea what it's really like for some of these kids. Notice that a few of the brave younger ones (late teens, early twenties) actually admitted a difference in beliefs and most of the other ones (athletes) have said they just go along w/it...I haven't really seen many who have been openly saying, I LOVE praying in the gym and I feel it's so important to me, etc. Get the drift? It is in most young people's initial instinct is to conform...just think about the way kids dress in school. Think how important it is that they wear THIS particular brand of clothes, or whatever trend is popular at the moment..and then think about the select few who choose to step outside the box and dye their hair neon green. Think about the ones who wouldn't dare openly admit they are homosexual in school for fear of ridicule. The list goes on and it includes religion whether or not anyone cares to admit it. So people will just pretend, conform, and go along w/the norm, even if they don't truly feel that way in their hearts...does that make you happier? To know that there are kids who don't feel the same way, but won't say anything bc of the fear of being different and the potential implications and pitfalls for that young person? That's why you'll notice it's mostly college kids who are actually brave enough to express how they really feel, bc they are mostly out of that bubble and have found other people who accept them for the way they are, regardless of religion, sexual orientation, the way they dress, etc.
See, I've always held the contention that if you aren't ashamed of what you believe in and stand for, why should you feel the need to not want to discuss it? I mean you already have w/regards to religion, so obviously you must feel it's somewhat acceptable, no? :shrug:
in highschool i always found it funny that kids knew i was gay and then when they realized i wasnt christian they freaked out but if one of my gay friends said they were gay and christian all the christian kids went crazy! so i understand the whole norm thing
i think at my gym we're very open and respectful to every athlete there.
we do a prayer before each time we perform that our coach usually leads. i don't think anyone is made to feel left out or as if they have no option but to participate. i mean i just kneel and hold hands with whomever is closest to me and then just watch everyone else.
our owner usually has her christmas tree up in the lobby all december and this year she actually had a menorah brought in and got a bunch of candles and everything for it and some other such really pretty decorations becuse we got a lot of new kids this year...
this past weekend at Cheer Power we did our prayer and before we ended our coach called on on of the girls (who's jewish) to throw in anything she may have wanted to say before we were done.
i think in instances like that it's fine. noone feels pressured, isolated, etc. it's all good
I tried (unsuccessfully) to stay away from this thread initially because we have seen how bent out of shape people can get over new unis and that is so trivial when compared to religion or politics. Politics determines the course of this country and its future (therefore my children's future in large part). Religion determines my children's ultimate futures. But both p & r are complex and can not be condensed into a paragraph here and a paragraph there and truly get someone's core beliefs out there. So it is TOO EASY to just dismiss someone as an "atheist jerk" or a "religious moron". I can discuss (usually ) p or r with friends who have different points of view because I FIRST know that person as a complete individual and so would not "judge" them on just that conversation. Even if I thought they were nuts for not agreeing 100% with me - attempt at a little levity. But this is a forum I really enjoy coming to and I want to think well of everyone on here and just enjoy the ride. But the issues of p and r are so important that I get too heavily invested in them. And while there were posts I wanted to write dissertations in response to (in addition to things I already wrote) i almost get more annoyed at people who treat it as nothing and make a joke than I do at those with whom I disagree vehemently. From posts
scattered all over the board I develop images in my head of people on here - he is hilarious, he would be so
much fun to know or she seems like someone I would love to live down the street from. And I do not want to unfairly categorize a person as someone I could never like just because of a few posts on a topic that I disagree with them on. I realize that this is far more a negative reflection on me and way too heavy for this time of the morning, but feeling kind of philosophical.
I am more than proud to discuss it...but it always ends back at the place where we believe what we believe and nothing changed or will...so the point is beat like a horse ...and FYI...I am a red white and blue bleeding conservative....proud of it and proud to love Capitalism...that wonderful thing that has brought this very message board to life.... ..YES? :shrug:
Again I think you give kids in general FAR too little credit for knowing what they believe, standing up for what they believe, and knowing when there is really not an issue to fight about.
You have no idea what it's really like for some of these kids. Notice that a few of the brave younger ones (late teens, early twenties) actually admitted a difference in beliefs and most of the other ones (athletes) have said they just go along w/it.
Actually I do because those brave younger ones are my children. My three kids (23, 19, 12) grew up in a Christian church. We attend services together, pray together, enjoy the fellowship of our church family, and try to relax on Sundays. However, my oldest daughter has from a fairly early age said she does not believe in Christianity. She still attend church with us because she enjoys the fellowship, time with family, and respects our beliefs. Sometimes she will pray with us and sometimes she won't. There has been times when she refused to go foward for Communion and times when she did not. Either way, our family and even more importantly our church family has loved her. She was open about her beliefs in high school and received no issue with it. I hope someday she will bring Christ into her heart but I will love her and respect her either way.
My middle child (19) questioned Christianity as well but decided to go through confirmation classes at the age of 14 so he could learn more. At the end of the class he decided to not join the church as he was still unsure of his beliefs. I along with our whole church family embraced him for his dedication in learning about our religion and for not making a decision until he was sure. He willingly sat with his confirmation class during the service while the rest of the kids went forward to join. He was never judged for his decision by me, our family, or his peers at church.
My youngest (12) attends church regularly and has a close knit group of friends there. She is beginning to ask many questions and I welcome them all. She will attend confirmation classes in 2 years and will make her own decision on whether to join our church.
I haven't really seen many who have been openly saying, I LOVE praying in the gym and I feel it's so important to me, etc.
Feel free to come on down the road to CAC. I could line the the kids up for you that would be willing to give testimony of their faith and how it is a part of their entire life, including cheerleading.
It is in most young people's initial instinct is to conform...just think about the way kids dress in school. Think how important it is that they wear THIS particular brand of clothes, or whatever trend is popular at the moment..and then think about the select few who choose to step outside the box and dye their hair neon green. Think about the ones who wouldn't dare openly admit they are homosexual in school for fear of ridicule. The list goes on and it includes religion whether or not anyone cares to admit it.
I don't know your experience with teenagers right now but the above paragraph makes a great sound bite but is not what all kids face these days. Does this happen? Of course sometimes it does...but it also DOESN'T happen a whole lot as well. My kids attend what would be considered a conservative public school in Charlotte. The kids there come from all different ethnic, religious, and cultural areas. There are many that are openly gay and lesbian. Neon Green hair is against the systems rules but you see almost every other thing that is used to be seen as an individual. These "non-comformists" are also the kids that hold offices in school, play sports, and make the best grades. They would be considered the "popular" group.
To know that there are kids who don't feel the same way, but won't say anything bc of the fear of being different and the potential implications and pitfalls for that young person?
I don't doubt there are some kids that feel pressure to conform but there is a growing trend for teenagers right now to be the exact opposite. Teenagers right now are seeing "conforming" as bad and they are doing whatever it takes to not be seen this way. Kids are incredible smart and intuitive these days. They are studying subjects in high school that we didn't see until our senior years of college. They are traveling abroad and experiencing cultures that we only read about. And they are so much more open and accepting of differences that we were once told were bad when we were younger. We give teenagers way too little credit for being the smart, accepting, and passionate people that they are.
Lastly to the question of giving prayer time at practice for other religions. CAC's mission statement includes Judean-Christian principles so I cannot say that would happen there. However for the sake of argument, if the gym were not religious based, as a parent I would have no issue with prayers being given by other religions. My daughter is smart enough to know what she believes and open enough to not judge others for theirs. I'd probably even ask that parent or child to have lunch or dinner with me later so I could learn more about their religion just so I would be informed. I probably wouldn't change my beliefs but I welcome learning about others.
@xtremeteal4life I didn't want to quote your entire post because it was long, but I agree with the way kids conform because they don't want to be different. When I was in elementary school I was friends with a neighbor girl who went to a private Christian school out where her Grandfather was the minister. Everytime her grandparents were around they would ask why I hadn't been to church with them and after a while I got tired of hearing it so I started going on Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings. We never really payed attention because we were kids and were more interested in goofing off. Well one Halloween someone had handed out little magic cards instead of candy. Myself and my parents thought nothing of it but when I went to church that Wednesday they told me that if I didn't get rid of those cards I was going to hell because it was witchcraft. It was from that moment on that I decided going to this church because I wanted to be good friends with this girl, it just wasn't going to work. I stopped going and you know what, we have been friends ever since. It didn't take conforming to her beliefs to have respect for each other and I feel many kids haven't realized that and still do it. I know many kids that will do anything to fit in with a certain person or group, so if they are faced with having to be the outsider at a practice I can imagine eventually that kid is going to want to fit in enough to conform which just isn't right.
@CharlotteASMom I wish everyone was as open minded about things like yourself and your children are it would make the world a much better place, but from where I grew up and many other places I have been that is very rare. Kudos to your post though, I love hearing from parents who have faced having a child decide that they didn't believe exactly what their parents did and how they handled the situation. Like I said before I am 23 and still having to deal with my parents wanting to pressure me into their church, but hearing things like you said give me hope that eventually they will just accept that I am different then they are and move on.
I hope this for you as well!
We are of course in the Bible Belt here however Charlotte is a progressive city. It's simply not as cut and dry as many make it out to be and I hope the trend I am seeing continues.
IMHO it depends on where you live, where you're from, etc. Moving from NY to KY was interesting. In New York, you are raised to NEVER speak of politics or religion, but it's a main conversation point in Kentucky.
However, no matter where you're from, it's important to respect differences in opinion!
Yes, it was me I was into the neopagan (eclecticism) things for a while..I think if a gym had everyone get in a circle and ask for a blessing from the Lord and Lady, parents would be through the roof..
We are definitely a Praying Gym!!!!!
1 Peter 3:15 says ...Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect...
As a Christian, I have a duty to be prepared to give an answer about why I believe in Jesus Christ, as does every other Christian. The part that some Christians forget is the last seven words of this passage. Gentleness and respect are necessary when telling others about our faith as Christians. Its too bad some Christians have "bashed" people with their faith. Telling someone they are "going to hell" is not being gentle (on top of the fact that we don't know who is going to hell, only God does). I would venture a guess that many a person has been turned away by a "well meaning Christian" who said something that was harsh rather than gentle. My heart aches for those who are turned away from God by angry, defensive Christians.
As far as praying at the gym... If it were my gym, I would make sure that the participants knew UP FRONT that I run my gym with Christian values and we will pray before/after every practice and before/after every competition. You would know that coming in and it would not be up for debate. I would ask you to respect my beliefs as the owner before you asked me to respect your beliefs as the customer. If you did not want accept my system, then you would be free to find another gym.
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