It’s been ages since I’ve written anything here and in that time my views on many subjects, including Christianity, have changed quite a bit. I now consider myself to be an Agnostic, someone who endorses no particular conclusions and endeavors to keep an open mind concerning any and all spiritual/metaphysical beliefs/practices.
One thing I’ve noticed is that as humans we have an uncanny ability to see whatever we desire to see. If you’re a Christian, or any faith actually, you see the evidence for your particular traditions existence in whatever way seems real to you. It’s that perception, which tells us we’re right and everyone else is wrong!
The smartest people I know secretly believe both sides of the issue.
My inability to believe is tied up in what I see as the obvious inconsistency of things taken as being miracles or as absolute truth. There are such things as coincidence and just plain old happenstance that can explain the so called movings or actions ascribed to a “Holy Spirit”.
When I considered myself to be a Christian it always bothered me how people continuously made excuses for God. How they could take a non-allegorical statement in scripture and reduce its actual meaning or significance to basically nothing. I often wondered why people were so reluctant to stand firmly or walk in faith regarding the promises put forth in the Christian text, ultimately I realized that they simply had no actual faith or real belief in what they were espousing and were just going through the motions…
Which brings me to my next BIG bone of contention concerning Christians which is their conduct or actions. Apparently it’s unrealistic to expect a person to undergo an actual rebirth, become a new creation “in Christ” at salvation or even just be a better person as a result which is what my understanding of the transformative power of the blood explained in the gospels was. Are there notable examples of exceptions in modern times? Of course, but the explanation for that in my opinion, has to do with the power of the belief of the person involved and nothing more. Not to in any way downplay that, our minds are extremely powerful and our ability to be empowered is easily triggered by a belief that we’re somehow acting out the will of an all powerful benevolent God in our lives.
My perceptions of myself and of Christian people closest to me in my life have weighed the heaviest in my apostasy. Ministers, wives, parents, friends, none of them had anything even close to a
“peace that passes understanding”
I’d read and heard preached so much about or appeared to possess any part of the searched for “Kingdom of Heaven”. I have met a few Christian people who seemed to have cheerful demeanors and positive personalities but my conclusions regarding them are that some people are just that way to begin with! Happy, positive, good hearted folks! Truth be told, I’ve actually met way more people like that who I knew to be irreligious!
Isn’t that a hoot?
I’ve always seen the relationship between Christians and their God as being similar to a relationship between a Father and His children. To me, it’s always been heart wrenching to think in terms of a broken hearted father who couldn’t help his errant and rebellious children. My response has always been,
“Think how much a loving father wants to help a child who’s moving in the right direction, who has turned from his rebellion and is truly seeking his father’s face, How much does the father want to help him and would he not open up the boughs of heaven and rain down blessings upon him?”
Turns out, not so much…
I actually lived the proof of that back in 2010 when I established a ministry center based on the power of Jesus to be the answer to people’s greatest struggles in this life. It was conceived to be a place where people could be encouraged through biblical teaching and look to it for real answers in their lives. Of course it turned out to be a huge flop, I mean really, why would God want to bless anything like that? How ridiculous! My memories of this time are many but one thing in particular sticks out in my mind.
1) I was told by a friend concerning my idea that the church would be my worst enemy, and boy was he right!
I puzzled over this statement for a good while until it finally dawned on me…
Well, I guess I’ve said my piece. It’s been a philosophical game of circular logic based on what can neither be proven or unproven. A game that’s net effect on mankind throughout history shows him to be the loser.
5 replies on “Losing My Religion ”
I pray you are a failure at agnosticism. Then what?
Well so far so good Larry. I’ve spent the last several years without any real need of God or religion in my life and things are just fine. “What then?” That’s the great thing about agnosticism, if circumstances change I can change my mind and move on. Good to talk to you Larry!
Thanks Larry. I was impressed by your thoughts in a comment back in 2013 on this blog. We can’t know what is going on in the hearts of others–that’s left to God. All we can do is seek him and we know some find Him. That gives Him glory. What happens in the minds and hearts of others we do not have power over. God bless you Larry!
Thanks for the honesty in your post.
You say you’ve given up on God and become an agnostic.
Does that invalidate all the good you tried to do as a Christian?
Will it make God love you any less?
As life has moved on your views have changed, but that’s not unusual.
My own faith was very black and white as a teenager, but now though I may see some things differently it is still just as strong.
So many Church ministries seem to sell us a God who will provide our needs, which maybe the opposite to the truth.
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27
Perhaps we grow closest to God when we set our own needs aside and serve him?
It can be a battle though, as we seek to look after No.1 and add a bit of service in for good measure.
Whilst I’m not likely to lose my faith, and have no fear of the current pandemic, as I know heaven will be better than the best this earth can offer I can commend a good book.
Disappointment with God – by Philp Yancey.
Hey Stephen! Nice surprise to read your comment! That is how I felt at the time and as for your other queries I really don’t know, that’s above my pay grade. I think its useful in a Christian context to understand the non-Christian mindset which was expressed here. How else will we speak to it? In the time since writing this everything in my life has changed. (again) you may be glad to know I continue to “seek the kingdom” although I’m really not very interested in conventional religious expressions and practices but continue to be intrigued by the redemtive healing power available to us through Jesus’ atonement on the cross. I still believe God has a plan for my life but I sure wish it’d hurry up and start making sense to me…take care and be well