I am going to the Veterans Administration Wednesday for surgery on my right hand to relieve Dupuytren's Contractures, the second time in four years.
This time there is a difference. Four years ago I lived in Oklahoma, where as an atheist my Christian neighbours mostly ignored me; those that didn't offered to pray for healing for my hands (rather than thank a skilled surgeon).
Now I live in a tiny village in the Nebraska Panhandle, and am a trustee on the village board (city council). The other members and the village clerk are all members of the Lutheran Church across the street from my house.
When the news hit the village (no one can hide anything here, plus my arms will be in casts throughout the summer anyway), each of the village board members, and the clerk, offered to help me as I recover—get groceries, rake my yard, hang laundry on the line, &c.
Not pray for me. Help me if I need help.
The same goes for the rest of the folks in town. No one has offered to pray for me, but many people have offered to help.
Though Pew Research lists Nebraska as the fourteenth-most religious state in the Union, and the folk in town are actually quite religious, they do not use their faith as an excuse to proselytise to me—religion is not a discussion between my wife, me, and the rest of the town. Religion was not an excuse to not elect me.
I have decided I like Nebraska (or at least this town) far better than Oklahoma.