This is a misconception born of a Christian spirituality which does not take the Incarnation of Jesus serious enough. It is a misconception that Jesus cannot permeate everything we do, no matter how mundane it seems. Jesus did the ordinary…Jesus did the ordinary! Nothing, therefore, is ordinary in service to God done faithfully through Love. Think of St. Therese of Lisieux, the little flower. She became a Doctor of the Church through the inspired genius of doing little things for the Love of God, through Jesus. Therefore, service to our country and government in serving in the military, paying taxes, following the speed limit, voting, and contributing to the community through charitable acts, are all a participation in discipleship if done for the glory of God.
But there is a devious deception perpetrated against Christians everyday. In the name of inclusiveness, Political Correctness, and politeness to those of other faiths, or no faith at all, Christians are told to leave their Christianity behind closed doors, either at home, or in the Church. They are told that a good citizen is a secularized citizen. They are told that a good citizen is a citizen that follows the Democratic norm, manifest in the rules, laws, and norms of the majority, or the popular society. They are told that Christianity is not normative for American life, no more than atheism, agnosticism, monotheism, New Age, Wiccan, or any cult to hit the societal horizon.
They (we) are told that a good citizen (of faith) must give to God behind closed doors, or within the silence of ones own mind and heart. To extend Christianity outward is to offend. But Caesar (our government) must be given tribute openly, daily, and with all our energy.
The first way we spoke of is faith in the Incarnation of Jesus Christ. The second way is flat out idolatry. The first way betters our society. The second is displaying our current downfall.