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About unsureaboutgod

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    fishing, camping, reading, thinking
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    ex-minister working to figure out what i believe about the world and my place in it.

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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?

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  1. Everyone has their own reasons for believing/disbelieving. I now find myself among the disbelievers, but there are numerous arguments against belief in the truth of the Bible or its god that I still disagree with as much as I did when I was a Christian. Arguing from a position of ignorance is never a great idea, but I think everyone is guilty of it at one time or another.
  2. I really feel for those here whose marriages are suffering. Deconversion is hard enough to experience on its own. I've tried hard to reveal my loss of faith to her incrementally. I was so tempted to just blurt it all out at once, but I knew it would be much easier for her to digest in smaller portions. Her resistance/discomfort varied depending on the nature of the doctrine. I had no expectation that she would completely agree with me about any of it, but I suspected and hoped she would come to similar conclusions in her own studies. The tallest hurdle we've cleared is my belief that, if there is a "god", it cannot be the god of the Bible. I was ecstatic when she didn't attempt to argue that point, much more so when she actually offered agreement! I'm so excited to share my life with her!
  3. As I mentioned in my extimonial a few weeks ago, my wife has recently begun her own journey to discover the truth about the Bible and its god. She's admitted to me recently that she now believes most everything in the Old Testament through the invasion of Canaan is myth, that much of the rest has, at least, been embellished, and that hell/the devil doesn't make any sense. She also told me she thinks Jesus could not have been perfect because he clearly believed mythological things to be factual and that we probably cannot know what he actually said anyway since so much of the gospel narrative is obviously propaganda. Huge steps that are, in my opinion, very positive for her. Another strong indicator of how much has changed lately: when I first admitted my doubts to her, she expressed concern about what I would teach our kids about the Bible. Last night, she told me she wants me to study with them.
  4. Thank you all for the warm welcome! It feels good to be part a community of people who can genuinely relate to these experiences!
  5. When I was a Christian minister, I always tried hard to never be the reason for a non-believer's conversion. If someone asked for my opinion, I'd give it to them, but when talking to people within the context of a Bible study, my goal was to leave my (or anyone else's) opinion out of it. Religious change of any sort is too important to be made simply to please another person. My de-conversion took a long time and was painful. While I'm glad I arrived at the conclusions I did without outside noise or influence, it would have been nice to have had someone to share my thoughts and emotions with, particularly in the early doubting stage. I don't want my wife to de-convert simply because I have. It needs to be her choice made for her own reasons. That's a really big part of this. I know well how tough it is. I intend to be there and support her, even if her conclusions aren't the same as mine.
  6. There's no "one size fits all" approach to something like this. Each marriage is unique. Some might not be worth saving. I absolutely believe mine is and I'm willing to navigate this transition in our lives as carefully as I can for my wife's sake and that of our children. I applaud anyone who makes reasonable sacrifices to avoid unnecessarily hurting others.
  7. Am I the only one? In the course of de-converting, I have discovered there are few things I find more satisfying than swearing. Drinking, sleeping in on Sundays... of all the items on the "Formerly Taboo" list, this is, by far, the one I enjoy most.
  8. I understand the mindset you're describing, B. I recently admitted my lost faith to my wife. Though she is slowly coming to many of the same realizations, it hasn't been an easy process for her. Among the first things she asked me was if this meant I was no longer concerned with leading our family to heaven. That was always a big deal for both of us. It was hard for me to admit that to myself when I was working through my de-conversion on my own. It really shook up my image of myself as a husband and father. I can only imagine how difficult it was for my wife. If the roles were reversed, I can easily see myself stepping my game up in an effort to rescue her.
  9. She's incredible and I am a very lucky man, Roz! She grew up not knowing much about the Bible. Being in ministry when we met, I initially encouraged her to study it in order to strengthen her faith. It wasn't until I admitted my doubts that she really began reading it seriously, though. She almost fell over when I told her I now believe Darwin was right; she told me I almost had her convinced evolution was impossible!
  10. Par, you're right. It is far more difficult to make the Bible work with science, history, and archaeology than it is to accept it as deeply flawed and biased work of historic fiction. Amateur, I am so fortunate to be married to someone willing to make the trip with me. Thank you both for your encouraging words!
  11. I've been lurking for quite awhile and am finally ready to introduce myself. I grew up in a solidly Christian home. We believed every word of the Bible was purposely placed by God through divinely inspired authors. Though I struggled with periods of rebellion, I never doubted God's existence or the truth of His Word. I studied at seminary and worked as a youth minister for a small church for a number of years. As has been the case with many others, I eventually became disillusioned with the Church. (Unchecked hypocrisy, unqualified leaders of divinely attributed popular election, narrow, clannish fellowship practices...) I stopped praying because I was tired of having one-way conversations. I found myself beginning to question it all. I began re-reading things I'd previously dismissed or argued against. I allowed myself to hold the Bible to the same standards of criticism as any other set of documents. I discovered it to be nothing more than the work of an ancient people struggling to understand the world around them without the benefit of scientific explanation. There is no divine hand moving throughout history. If there is a creator/prime mover/intelligent designer, it is certainly not the God of the Bible. If there is no God, there is no sin. There is no hell. There is no heaven. There is science and beauty and this life, here and now and for however long it lasts. And it is worth living! I re-calibrated my conscience. I admitted my unbelief to my wife. She is now actually reading the Bible for herself, prompting discussions which are leading her to many of the same conclusions about it. It's not always easy, but we are determined to discover the truth together. It feels so incredible to be able to write this: JEHOVAH IS NOT REAL! HE IS NOT REAL AND THAT IS COMPLETELY FUCKING OKAY! There are still so many difficulties, both present and ahead, with family and friends who will be hurt and confused by my de-conversion. I will cross those bridges when they arrive. It will be worth it. The sweater is unravelled, and I am finally free.
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