Religious intolerance arose with presumptions of certainty: the sureness that my sect possesses certified knowledge means that I cannot endure your sect's evident error. If it had always been accepted that belief does not rise to the level of knowledge, religious intolerance might not have marred our histories.
Do we need religion to feel wonder and awe?
I've never liked Father's Day, in large part because I never liked my father (alcohol/God). It didn't help being raised an Orthodox Jew: my Father in Heaven was as bad as my father on Earth. Neither father, biological nor mythological, was happy.
Religion aside, I firmly believe that those who argue that homosexuality is a choice do so in order to justify senseless beatings of gays and lesbians, and continued discrimination and mistreatment against them. I also believe without a doubt that it is a choice to be a nasty human being.
Strength is to let go, to let be, to simply exist. Strength is to know that we are nothing and that we have no strength. It is to know that strength is in God and is not acquired but provided.
We try to display ourselves as strong, independent beings, as confident and un-phased by the events around us. In reality, it is often a show, a facade, a cry for attention rather than an element of fortitude.
While working on our own sincerity, we have to realize that the reality is, we will rarely meet sincere people. We will rarely meet people who will genuinely step out of themselves to attempt to see things from our perspective and act accordingly.