Also serving the communities of De Luz, Rainbow, Camp Pendleton, Pala and Pauma

'Christian Nationalism' isn't scary

I read an op-ed recently that very much saddened me because it tried to paint Christian Nationalism as this horrible small group of people to be feared and treated with disdain. While there are many people who fit the Christian Nationalist label and are not scary, but rather some of the kindest, most helpful, and loving individuals out there. It was disheartening how this person, who probably doesn't really know anyone very well whom she would label that way, would speak in such harmful ways about any group instead of truly trying to understand their hearts and positions, whether we agree on the conclusion or not. This is what we teach in our very own public local schools (Stephen Covey) to seek to understand each other first. If it is good enough for our children, why do we stop practicing it as adults?

Fear-mongering labels are how bigotry, dehumanization, and oppression of people are born. This is the mentality of hate, not love and understanding, and an attitude of cooperation so all individuals can feel they have come out better and are more unified as much as possible when meeting at the table to discuss important topics. Those demeaning labels steer people from inviting one another to the table to seek solutions with a belief in the best positive approach and cause division in such a lovely community as Fallbrook. Truly, labeling in negative ways only promotes divide, problems, and seeks to be dismissive and unkind to the "other" labeled. Is that the example we want to set for our children? Is that what we want as a country? Is that who we wish to be as individuals? Why not focus on understanding each other's perspectives better rather than making inaccurate assumptions and put-downs? Why not try to get to know one another and work together on what we have in common because I bet we have a lot more than you realize in the end when you see people by their real name (not a label or group to be feared and hated) as your neighbor and look into often their very caring hearts?

A Christian is just someone who believes Jesus died on the cross to pay for the sins (poor, mistaken, or evil choices) of EVERYONE in the world and offers the gift of forgiveness to ANYONE (could you be more inclusive???) who wants to have it so their relationship with God can be restored and thrive. This is how God can remain both just and loving to his beloved creation. They love Jesus and try their best albeit imperfectly at times to love their neighbors. (For example, parents often pay for things their young kids break of a neighbor's because the cost is not something the child can afford, but in order to be just and address the damage and repair the relationship to a good one with the neighbor a loving parent steps in and does what would be very difficult for that young child to do. That is what our Heavenly Father has done for us for Eternity.)

A Nationalist is just someone who loves their country and the freedoms for which it stands and prefers smaller local governments where possible. Doesn't mean they think it has a perfect past or can't be improved. Yet, many Americans believe no matter our country's flaws, it is still the best place to try to get ahead in life and live freely more than anywhere else in the world, and we don't want the parts that make it free or the parts that provide for individuals to have a more impactful voice peacefully to be diminished. It does not mean you don't love other countries and the people there too or think you are better than them. We still have a curiosity about and appreciation for all cultures (I personally have loved traveling the world and enjoy many of the differences in culture) and want to help when they struggle. It does mean you don't think it wise to give up National Sovereignty to a small group of people who think they are elites, smarter than, and know better than the individuals in their communities what is best for them and have little accountability because the bigger a government gets, the more far removed it gets from the variety and billions of people it serves, and the harder it is for those people to reach out and have a voice to the policies these few world dictators will impose.

So being a Christian Nationalist is not something to be ashamed of. Rather, it is quite an oxymoron and inaccurate, unkind behavior for someone in an effort to create fear between fellow humans and neighbors to justify being dismissive and inequitable to the concerns, needs, and opinions of those that love Jesus and their country and feel good about being so intolerant and non-inclusive in their hearts while claiming they love diversity of opinion, equity, and are oh so inclusive. Sadly, they don't see their own hypocrisy and the harm they are causing with such demeaning use of labels.

We can do better Fallbrook neighbors! We are the Friendly Village! Let's not buy into the world's lies that lead to disharmony between us.

From Your Local Christian Nationalist who loves you, is willing to be challenged and grow, wants to understand where you are coming from even if we disagree, and help wherever able when you need.

Many Blessings Fallbrookians!

Kara Jenkins


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