I fell on the ground; the hard, cold gym floor was pressed against my face. I looked up to see the figure who had shoved me, let's call him John. John looked like he was just above six feet, almost a foot taller than I was. His blond hair was all sweaty due to the running we had been doing previously. His blue eyes showed me that I better stay down for the meantime. I didn't know what to do, the teacher wasn't looking, and my classmates weren't either. My only friend in that class didn't see what had happened. I wasn't scared of my assailant, he had done things similar to this almost every day; I was inured to it. John had done this for many reasons. I was short and easy to pick on, I wasn't athletic, rather academic, I played video games often and talked about them a lot. I didn't care if he bullied me about those things, but he knew my weak spot. A point that would easily break me, and he exploited it. He bullied me because I was a Christian.
Throughout my life I have been a Christian. I grew up in a Christian household, I go to a Bible club at my school, I go to church, my life basically revolves around being a Christian. So for the fact that my life is like this, it saddens me that people have no respect for groups they don't understand, like Christianity. I have been both verbally and physically bullied by others just for being religious; I know others who have been as well. I just don't understand why people have to treat others like dirt under their feet when, in reality, we're all human beings.
Being a Christian has made me come closer to a lot of people. I have great relationships with friends and family. I remember this one time when my mother had lost a necklace her mother had gotten her. This specific necklace was special to her because it was one of the only items she currently owned of her mother's, who had passed away. I heard her crying when I was about to go to bed, so I decided to pray. A few seconds after I was done praying, I heard a gasp. Peeking out of my room, I saw my mother had found her necklace. I know most people would say that was just a coincidence, but I think it was the act of God, guiding her to where her lost necklace was. I'm fine if people think it's a coincidence, but what bothers me is that I would get yelled at by a lot of the people I told this to that I was wrong and I was stupid to think anything that wasn't what they thought. I wouldn't and don't treat people like that, so why would they do it to me?
In the beginning of my freshman year of high school, I remember my friend wanted to talk to me. When we finally got to a spot away from others, he came out and told me he was gay. He already knew I was a Christian and didn't support that but he knew me well enough to know I would still treat him like a friend. We are still friends a year later, although we now have different tastes in things such as what classes we like taking or what games we play. I don't talk to him as often, but I still don't treat him like trash, and I honestly don't want to. There's a difference between how people should be treated, and how people like John, for example, treat others.
I remember talking with these two guys, who were in my class, while we were in the hallway as we waited for the teacher to return from lunch. One of them brought up the subject of priests being rapists, and I asked him to stop talking about it. He decided to continue. He started saying all priests were rapists and started making disrespectful jokes about God and Jesus. I couldn't go anywhere else because the teacher was supposed to be back any minute and I didn't want to be late to class. I asked him to stop again, telling him that what he was doing was rude, but he continued. Luckily, the teacher came a few seconds after and the guy left me alone. All these people did was make someone else upset; I fail to see how that is a good thing.
As sad as it is, there will always be people like John and those two boys in the hallway. John bullies people into thinking that they don't deserve respect, and the two boys in the hallway show them that people don't deserve opinions. On the other side of the spectrum, however, are people like my friend who, although he knew I didn't support being gay, still came out to me because I knew better than to mistreat others. Then there's the people I’ve come close to throughout my life; they know how to treat others with the respect they deserve. I may not know how to stop people like John and the two boys in the hallway, but I do know that, in time, things will get better for not just me, but anyone who is hated just on their way of life.