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Showing content with the highest reputation on 09/14/2017 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    Hello. I just discovered this site a few days ago by chance. Thank you to its creators and to every active member. I'm so glad to be able to connect to this community. I was born and raised in Georgia. Right in the Bible Belt. From birth until about age 14, I attended a little Southern Baptist Church without even 50 members. Throughout my teens and into my early 20s, I changed to a Pentecostal church. I never considered myself to be of one denomination or another. I only ever referred to myself as a Christian and simply changed churches because of a racist incident at the baptist church. My parents took me to church nearly every Sunday and always sent me to VBS. Christianity was pounded into my head every chance they had. They never questioned our religion. I tried not to. I was made to feel like I should believe every word of the Bible and every word from the pastor and questioning or disagreeing with either was something you just didn't do. When disagreements or questions arose, I suppressed them. I tried hard not to think of them and worked diligently to pray my guilt away. All of my life, I never felt connected to God. This of course was my fault. I didn't try hard enough. I didn't pray enough. I wasn't good enough...etc, etc. I remember as a child being scared that I would go to hell because I never felt saved. I would go through the motions and come through the other side feeling guilty for the lack of change inside of me. Every church service ended with an alter call for the unsaved. This stressed me out. I would often fake a bathroom break when I noticed the sermon wrapping up so I could skip the guilt and nervousness that would follow. I would say the sinners prayer every Sunday to myself, in my seat. I wanted so badly to run to the front of the church, throw myself on the alter and beg God to please accept me. Why wouldn't he connect with me? Was I so bad? What was I doing wrong? If you've ever been to a Pentecostal church, then you know the emotional hype that hangs in the atmosphere. Countless times I would watch the congregation "experience God" and dance and sing and shout and run and speak in tongues and cry!! So much crying! All because they were feeling God move through them. I was alone in the room. I participated but it was forced. My tears fell for the lack of God that I felt and of course, more guilt because of it. Guilt not God was the only thing that ever moved me. From high school into early adulthood, I could not deny that I felt differently about homosexuality, abortion and how the world was created. I had always had a strong interest in science and psychology. If you have studied either, you can understand how both will make you question any religion. College was even worse! My religious beliefs were put to the test and they didn't hold up. I tried to go to church but it was so forced and I found it was easier to deal with my guilt outside of church. I finally began to allow myself to question my religion which led to questioning if God was even real. Once I started having children, I felt it my duty to raise them in the church, because not doing so was a sin, right? I would one day have to account for that, right? I tried to find a church to attend and I began to read my Bible. I wanted to read it from cover to cover. That wasn't a good idea. It led to more questions and disagreements. About two years ago I decided I would stop pursuing God/Jesus and Christianity. I was tired of the fight within myself and I had long been tired of the guilt. I wanted to be neutral and just see if God would come to me. I wanted to be a good little Christian. I wanted Gods approval. I was just so tired, I needed a break. Finally, last year, I was forced to face myself and my beliefs. I was forced to decide what was real. This may sound like the craziest thing but I have to thank Donald Trump for helping me see the truth. . . . (((Let me take a short pause for a good belly laugh ))) . . . When I saw how many "Christians" supported and praised a man who was NOTHING like Jesus, who didn't even look like a Christian to me, someone who we should stand against.. it threw me for a loop to say the least. I was angry at the church for supporting him. My biggest problem is that he is racist and misogynistic. My husband is black and all three of our children are mixed. I have two daughter who I want to grow up expecting equality and nothing less than common respect. I am raising a son to treat women equally and respectfully in all situations. Needless to say, the whole Trump persona feels like a personal attack against my life. I felt hurt by those close to me or whom I considered friends because they were supporters of him and I felt like they were disgracing my religion. The religion I had worked so hard to follow. So many of the Christians that I knew walked closely with God, somehow didn't see how bad this man was. I had never heard from God but they had. They had that close relationship that I couldn't achieve. How come God didn't tell them not to support Trump? If Jesus was in their hearts, why didn't he move them to know the truth? I became mad at God and the whole idea of Christianity. We were supposed to be all about love. Jesus' greatest teaching was to love right? But here we are, the Christian community is supporting someone who hates other races. This year, I have taken a long hard look at the idea of Christianity and at what I've been taught to believe and what I feel and actually believe in my heart. The conclusion I've come to? I do not believe in any of it. I believe in science. I believe in humans. I believe in this world and in the universe and that is all. Christianity is a scam. The Bible is a bad fairy tale used to control us and warp our minds and our behaviors. I'm over it. Last week I sat down and cried as I admitted this to myself and felt the chains I've drug around fall off of me. The guilt has washed away. I feel a sense of freedom that I have never known. The night I found this website, I nervously, half-ass admitted to my husband that I did not believe any longer. I said "honey, I don't think I'm a Christian anymore..." He looked at me and said "yeah, I've had my doubts for a long time. I think there might be a higher power but it's nothing like what the Bible says". So we were both non-believers and I just fell in love with him all over again !! Until I hit "submit" on this post, he's the only one who knows. My parents would be heartbroken and probably drive the 10 hours between us right now to lay hands on me tonight! My mom is convinced that the world is about to end and Jesus is going to come back any moment. I hear an end of time speach every time we get on the phone and I know that telling her I don't believe would only cause her pain, stress and sadness. So, I will stay in the "closet" for now until I can grow some balls. I would love to just put it out there that I am done with religion, but I don't want to hurt her or hear her mouth. I don't really know how my friends or family will react. I hope they will accept me for not believing as I accept them for believing. Who knows. At least, in my own home, with my dear husband, I can be myself. As for my children, I just want them to live life. They can decide what they believe when they are old enough to analyze the world and whatever religions it can offer them at that time. Thanks for reading
  2. 3 points
    Welcome to Ex-C Christy Many aspects of your story are similar to mine. Glad you found your way out of religion, and glad you found us. Also its great that your husband seems to share your lack of belief - that will make things much easier. There are some members here who have very different stories to tell with spouses that are still fundies and make life difficult. Coming out to parents is difficult, very difficult. There is no rush, hang around here, ask questions, read the testimonials of those who have gone before you, their experiences may help you. Much has been written on this site about the best ways to come out. You'll find them under Testimonies of former Christians, and Ex Christian life forums. All the best LF
  3. 2 points
    You arent a burden. Stick around. Im lurking from work and cant read longer posts, but just stick around for s while. Welcome
  4. 2 points
  5. 2 points
  6. 2 points
    Christy I am convinced it is paramount for a person leaving their faith to know why they are leaving theologically. Heaven & Hell are both fictional places created by humans as control mechanisms. Religion is all about fear, control, fictitious rewards & punishment. Dr. Bart Ehrman is a great author to read. He is easy to read & his books are available on Amazon in kindle format. YouTube is a great resource too & it's free. I would recommend Ehrman, Robert M. Price, David Fitzgerald, Dr. Richard Carrier's YouTube videos to watch along with DM Murdock. When it comes to the Bible & Religion there are two fields of study. One is what you hear in church. That is called apologetics. Stay away from that garbage. The other is called the historical/critical field of study. Those scholars are actual historians & history is where the truth resides. Ehrman note, in one of his books, that the Bible has been edited, redacted, & even rewritten more times that there are even words in it. The Bible you have in your home is mostly a forgery. Like I noted previously the bible isn't true. It's a collection of myths, folklore, Legends, fables & Jewish Midrash. No heaven, no hell, no angels, no demons or Devils, and no invisible little old man residing up in the sky somewhere watching & listening to everything people do down here on earth. And Jesus, if he actually existed, which is doubtful, wasn't God incarnate either.
  7. 2 points
    Welcome, glad you found us. I know you will find lots of support here, as well as a lot of good information. Rest assured the Bible is neither literally or historically true. You will find lots of resource material here that will be valuable in providing answers to all the many questions I'm sure you have.
  8. 2 points
    Actually there are far right and far left people here... and apolitical people... and atheists, pantheists, and unicornists I would say the far rights of the forum are possibly more vocal so it seems that the forum is 'far right'. This is a misconception. For one if you think its too far right, and you have different ideas then please post them. That's what makes discussion interesting! Personally I'd describe myself as centrist. I cuddle up to both sides
  9. 2 points
    I'm back! It's been awhile since I was in Dave's House...guess boyfriends and work have kept me busy! Good to see some familiar faces. Actually I came back because I recently had a relationship-ending fight with my mother. I told her that since she believes that her God is sending most of humanity to hell, that he is a monster. She told me that I am under the influence of Satan. I told her that Trump is a racist. She told me he's a great leader. Barf. There was plenty more, but you get the drift. I smacked her with reality, and she just dug into her Child Evangelism Mode. Of course, it's because I am "choosing" to be rebellious. Couldn't possibly be that she is wrong. Felt good to clear the air. I'm done with her and the whole fucking fundamentalist family. Done with being a Nice Gay Boy. I doubt that I will even go back for funerals. I have my own family here in San Francisco - of my own chosing. And damnit I am moving on. Now back to work! Great to read the posts, and be reminded that I am not crazy, and I am not alone.
  10. 1 point
    Weird things I used to believe: 1. The Bible is divine and inerrant. 2. The universe and all things on earth were created in six days. 3. Three persons are one god. 4. Dinosaurs and humans lived at the same time. 5. Scientists who aren't creationists are just trying to rationalize god away. Regarding music and intent, what about gospel music performed by irreligious people simply to sell a product to a specific demographic? My dad used to play a George Jones gospel album a lot, but I thought it was a bit off-putting because he was apparently a big drinker and didn't seem to be a true believer.
  11. 1 point
    Then you've come to the right place! While we're no substitute for professional help for PTSD etc, we certainly can be a sounding board and offer understanding, empathy and support for anyone struggling with all the $hit that christinsanity leaves in its wake. Hang in there please! (((Hugs)))
  12. 1 point
    I had problems with music too. Some secular music I was quite ok with (after my worst Pente days anyway, during which I only wanted gospel) but if there was a cuss word in the lyrics, or a god was mentioned in a some kind of way that didn't feel right, I didn't feel good about listening to it. With instrumentals I trusted my gut reaction to it, or whether I'd seen someone I considered a "true believer" listen to it. Other pointless and strange things, well, um. I thanked Jesus for anything and everything I did. I particularly remember walking up stairs, thanking Jesus each and every time I reached the top. I also thanked Jesus in my thoughts before thanking other people for the favours they did. I thought feathers on the ground were signs from angels. I thought the warm buzzes through my body were proof of the holy spirit working. I once tried to convince someone that god exists by talking in tongues in front of his face. I was surprised he didn't convert right there, because to me, it was perfectly obvious that glossolalia was, again, proof of god. No wait. I did that more than once. It only "worked" at all if the person already believed. I looked up to someone who was very likely psychotic. No wait... Not just one person there either. And becoming borderline (or maybe full-blown? No one knows anymore) psychotic myself, I only thought I was finally living the way I was meant to. I thought everything happened only because it was part of a bigger plan penned out by someone wiser than me. As a result of trying to figure the plan out, many things went wrong. I felt needless guilt about possibly straying from the plan. I didn't learn appropriate self control when I kept praying "thy will not mine" and then just seeing what happens (as I was sure god would pave an obvious road for me if I just denied myself). I let people hurt me in many ways, repeatedly. I also was studying science but firmly believed in a god of the gaps. Even though the gaps get smaller and smaller, some entirely disappearing, all the time.
  13. 1 point
    And that terror literally stops the thinking process when it comes to pondering the question "do I believe." I can imagine some folk thinking 'Come on - sure you know if you believe or not?' Honest answer is no I don't. It's like I can't know.
  14. 1 point
    @LovelyChantel I sent you a PM. That area is password protected to assure (as best we can) that access is limited to individuals over 18 years of age and that no info in that subforum is re-posted anywhere else. -buffettphan Moderator for Rants & Replies; Sex & Christianity; Critics Corner; and Humor & Satire http://www.ex-christian.net/staff/
  15. 1 point
    LovelyChantel - I come from parental abuse as well, but nowhere near this level. As a stranger just reacting to reading what you wrote, I think you should stay away from your parents. There are a lot of twisted, abusive situations where there is also a form of love - that's what keeps them going. I think you are right to stay away and develop your own strength. It may not be a good time to be too closely involved with your sister's needs, if you get sucked back in. As on an airplane, you have to make sure your oxygen mask is on you correctly, and oxygen against years of this sort of abuse will probably take time to get flowing fully. Big hugs, f
  16. 1 point
    Welcome, Bobzilla! I am glad you are out of the hateful system of Calvinism. I was a Calvinist too and was in a Calvinist seminary. I'm also glad that you don't have to hate me anymore for my being gay/bi (or ... hmm, I guess that really means bi), heh heh! A Hindu friend of mine maintains that polytheism is more in line with reality than what he calls henotheism or henologies like Christianity and Islam. Although India seems to be ramping up a sort of Hindu fundamentalism as a political tool, there has traditionally been a wide range accomodated within it. One of our members here, Bhim, is a former Calvinist of Indian heritage who describes himself as Hindu but, as I recall, he doesn't think he believes in God.
  17. 1 point
    You can start with telling people who want to evangelize or argue with you that you don't believe in sin and you reject that you even need to be saved in the first place. When they ask why, you can say if Adam and Eve actually happened as described in the Bible, then how were they supposed to know that God wasn't evil if they didn't have that knowledge yet. You can talk all about how the history of the bible is flawed, it's not faith if it actively goes against scientific discovery, and also fuck them lol. You can point out, as a parent, that you'd never deliberately set your children up to fail your standards and that you could never even conceive of creating a hell for people to go to at all. They shut up pretty quick when they can't use "sin" as an argument. They'll try again and you just go...."No. Morality is a social construct."
  18. 1 point
    Thank you and you just described my morning.. pumpkin something and me on the couch! Enjoying my day off ️🛋 thank you for the hugs!! I think I will find that even though we all come from different places, we all have similarities. We are the brave ones who have risen above our indoctrination to say we deserve more. I look forward to future conversations with you as well.
  19. 1 point
    @Christy, welcome! I really like your profile pic avatar thingie, it reminds me of fall and pumpkin spice lattes and curling up on the couch. As for your story, I can so relate with where you're coming from. Granted, I wasn't in a Pentecostal environment, I can't imagine that.....but I was born and raised in the church and taught to be a good little christian conservative girl. I can really only see now, in hindsight, how driven by guilt I was in my attitude towards god and in my behavior in general. I thought at the time that I could feel god (at times) or that perhaps I was misunderstanding him and would look for ways he might be communicating with me. It is only now that I can see how much I longed to hear from him and to have this "relationship" everyone was always talking about, and I just didn't. I knew all the answers.... Anyway, passing along @Margee's (((((HUGS)))) and looking forward to your feedback and perspective on future posts.
  20. 1 point
    The cock came first, that's the only one that matters.
  21. 1 point
    You'd be welcome amongst my sisters for sure... this whole generation of my family has departed from the faith.
  22. 1 point
    . .Welcome to EX-C Christy and easily is this in relation to where I came from. Pentecostalism well, the charismatic side of things now, to me, can be credited as one of the most laughable and just waking up was I able to see that and i'll tell you why. A good portion if not all of my family members on my father's side of the family sought to guide me and even convince me to their success that God was the answer and not at all the author of confusion so by far did I give up years of my life to this be it giving thousands of dollars to my church or even attending out of strong fears of going to hell like yourself which is clear that everyone knows about. My story is also here and atheism I can now consider in trade for years of idiocy is one of the best choices i've ever made. Do I feel for them? I do. .and then I don't and my reasoning as to not is because like myself have you awoken unlike many and told yourself on many levels that it was indeed time for you to go. To have wasted and still to this day years of their lives without much thought behind it is. .saddening on many levels and I now tell myself not to stress myself against the unconvinced but to instead live on my own terms yet smile and now tell myself that i'm no longer entrapped but able to get to know me without flipping pages whilst sitting from one pew to the next to study a book full of fairy tales. Yep! Though all you can do is live your life and maintain that happiness on knowing that not only have you escaped what could have literally been the end for you and your family, but also complete ignorance toward studying Christy for herself and you're talking with someone who attended church Monday through Sunday with two services on the last day of the week. They're safe from such psychological abuse given futuristically and even they can envision success without having something called, as my choice of words have now given it; falsified faith--since what good is it if many in this world have yet to be whom they are? And this is in reference to your children. The gift of prophesy. To have fallen prey to that as well, as I further visit many years wasted from my family is also laughable. My father recently before I cut ties with him waited ten years for what was told and according to him was it from God when it came to finalizing things. But now I ask that. .if he loved us shouldn't these requests be of an instant happening with knowledge given that we only live once? So many questions with little time for many and lack of answers leave the deluded all the more not only wondrous? But mentally left with self-inflicting wounds. You did the right thing, to put things on very simple grounds. You're saved with your own special gift and not exactly would I call it what is painfully obvious that these type of churches would lay on the table after you've flipped about and spoke what many people will never understand. You woke the hell up unlike many in this world. Live. Be you fearlessly. And again dismiss idiocy in trade for uniqueness. The Holy Ghost. LOL. Right. Welcome!
  23. 1 point
    But before the microchip, the rapture would happen and then you would know it was all real and you would still have one last chance at heaven by becoming a martyr for God and refusing the microchip. You would have to go through tribulation, sure. But you would finally know for sure that heaven is real. So, don't stress the microchip. According to end time prophecy, it won't be required until then, right? Hope this kind of makes you feel better.
  24. 1 point
    Margee that was so beautiful and heart wrenching. I've been exactly there. I've had those cries in the middle of the night. You've put into words the pains and prayers that I too have experienced in my walk through this religion. You express yourself so well. Thank you for sharing that. I wish everyone could read that. I'm sure so many would connect with it. Thank you
  25. 1 point
    Hello and welcome. You're not alone. Was raised in fundie non-denom and Pentecostalism from birth - 21. My story is also in this forum. Can relate except I did feel God, but I think it's really all a collective energy from the congregation. I still felt all the guilt regardless. Feel free to check out my story. You're supported and heard here.
  26. 1 point
    Hello and thank you. This feels like such a warm place already. I just can't express how I feel to be here. You are right, I am not alone. Thanks again! if you have any favorite posts please share. There is so much content on this site it will take a long time to navigate through all of it, if that is even possible. Lol
  27. 1 point
    Welcome to Ex-c Christy. I'm so glad you found us! Thank you for sharing your story with us. Everyone on this board understands what you are going through. It has taken me 7 years of deconverting on this board to learn a new world view after getting out of the Pentecostal church. By the way, all you were seeing at the altar was a bunch of highly emotional people. Pentecostalism is run on emotion. That's why I got hooked because I am a highly emotional person and they can suck us in using their 'happy' bait. Keep reading my friend. There is tons of stuff to read here that will show you that you are far from being alone. You are 'home' with people who truly understand. Looking forward to hearing more from you. Take your time.... because time will give you the wisdom to know how to react in many situations. Post all your questions. Someone is always here to help you. (hug)
  28. 1 point
    Almost as good as a world without Christianity. Heck, maybe even better.
  29. 1 point
    Thank you, I'm so glad to be here. There's so much to read, I love it! I've always found difficulty in connecting the history of the world and the Bible. I once read a book called The Science of God that twisted the words of the Bible to fit alongside the Big Bang and evolution. It seemed like a stretch. It seems like you can always interpret the words in that book however you want to in order to make it fit your situation. Yes, I do have many questions. It will take a while to answer them but I'm looking forward to it.
  30. 1 point
    Thank you!! I am very lucky to have him. I have read some stories here of others who have to hide it from their spouse. That would be so difficult. He's my best friend. I was definitely afraid of how he would react. I will look into how others have approached the parent issue. I definitely have no idea how to even begin. Part of me just wants to send out a group text and post it on all my social media accounts at once and say to hell with it! But that wouldn't be fair to my family. I can dream about it though.
  31. 1 point
    Better far-right than far-wrong.
  32. 1 point
    When both teams pray before the game, how do you decide which team to favor with a victory? Why did you create mosquitoes? Why do men have nipples?
  33. 1 point
    We make the best decision we can based on the information we have. When trying to guess how our decisions are going to play out when it comes to other people's ideas and emotions, it's awfully hard to guess. It's working out pretty comfortably for me when people think I'm a "struggling" Christian. Perhaps some day I can leave it all behind. For now, when they ask me how I'm doing and I know they mean "spiritually" (even though that's not a real thing), I say "I'm okay." One person recently followed up with "really?" and I said "yeah, I'm good." I don't think she believed me, but it's the absolute truth! I'm actually great when it comes to "faith." I don't have one bit of it... they're the ones with the problems!
  34. 1 point
    "It made me look like a fickle, unstable, idiot." Meh, aren't we all. LoL. Watch an episode of Dr Phil or Jerry Springer. You'll instantly feel like a genius. LoL.
  35. 1 point
    Exhibit 2. Note how the evidence comes directly from Reverend "I'm Full of Shit" Turmoil himself.
  36. 0 points
    Ah yes, when someone tries to convince you that God equals success when really, to those like us, he brings confusion because we are logical and will no longer walk blindly following a fairy tale. When I spoke of reading the Bible cover to cover, all it did offer was confusion. I too have been in a place of tithing and offering too much money to the pockets of my church and oddly enough, it was increased due to prophesy from a "profit" who visited my church for a short time. I was struggling to make ends meet but our church was told to tithe and offer an increased amount and God would bless us double-fold. I tried my hardest not to think too loudly that it all sounded like hogwash. I could barely pay my bills, let alone pay the bills for the newly built church. I nearly went into debt trying to keep up due to the pressure from my church and my parents (even though I was then an adult living on my own). I like you felt like if God loves us so much, why does he hold back? Why would he give millions to someone who didn't believe in him and leave his faithful followers in poverty? Thank you for your encouragement

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