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Physician Heal Me!


Unknowing1
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Gotta say that I walked into it. But it really got me to thinking even more critically than I have before.

 

Have a co-worker who sits outside my office. We are in different departments but I have known her for years on a superficial level. I knew she was studying to become a preacher but she has never really talked too much about her beliefs until yesterday.

 

She and I are have both been dealing with some back problems of late so I asked her how she was feeling. The conversation turned to what was wrong with her back and the course of treatment. Her problem, arthritis, treatment prescribed medication. At which point she proceded to become a bit agitated and say that she was not going to take the medication and that her other physician would make it go away. I'm not really thinking and said oh you are going to go to another doctor? She said NO, THE physician. I have to admit I'm still at a loss, I'm not exactly a stupid person but sometimes when I've been researching federal law all day my mind is a bit fried so I can be a bit slow on the uptake. Guess I have a blank look on my face so she shouts you know GOD! I say oh ok. She then precedes to tell me that she will only take certain medications such as for her high blood pressure and thyroid condition and that she will have God take care of the arthritis in her back.

 

I so wanted to continue on with the conversation and almost slipped up and asked her if she realized what she had said and did it really make sense to her but couldn't because I am in management, she's line staff, the conversation was taking place in a common area where other employees could hear and we both work at a public agency that has certain policies in place.

 

Really though why would someone pick and chose which medical condition to ask God to cure? I'm thinking she prayed to have the other two cured but her prayers went unanswered. So what will she do if one out of three actually do get better? Will she say a miracle occurred? And if none are cured will she ever realize that her prayers fell on deaf ears because there is no God? As assured as she was that God would cure her arthritis I'm betting that when it doesn't get better she will be telling herself she is a bad person and wasn't worthy of his love and intervention. And so the cycle will continue for her.

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Really though why would someone pick and chose which medical condition to ask God to cure?

 

Because pain can be ignorned, but blood pressure and thyroid problems can be objectively measured. They have to subconsciously know that their god is imaginary otherwise they wouldn't go through these types of mental gymnastics.

 

It would be interesting to go to a prayer meeting and make a request. As the group gets all pious and confident after a few cancer and alzheimer cases are raised, tell them that your brother just had his leg amputated and you would like the group to pray that it grows back. The mood in such a situation is sure to change to either exasperation or more likely to parently assurances that god's ways are not our ways as they pray for your brother to find growth in christ through his loss.

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I've been reading John Shelby Spong's Why Christianity Must Change or Die, and tonight I was looking at the chapter on prayer. When Spong's spouse was dealing with cancer they had many people praying for them.

 

Ironically, that was one of the things that drove him away from theism: Why would an all-powerful and all-knowing god pay special attention to people who have lots and lots of social connections (and hence lots of people in their personal prayer chains)? He sees it as another example of how religion models itself after social hierarchy, with the little guy deferring to and praising the big guy in the hope of getting favours.

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John Shelby Spong's Why Christianity Must Change or Die,

I don't really have any thing to add at this moment. I just wanted to say that this is ironically the book that confirmed my disbelief to my family when I accidentally left it in the bathroom one night.

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My thoughts exactly. If you are only asking God to cure the injuries/illness that are not life threatening then you really aren't putting your trust in God 100%. Which leads me to believe you may have your doubts. But I really would have loved to hear her explain it.

 

Even when I was a Christian I never attended prayer sessions. I would maybe say a prayer when I heard someone was sick or died but I would not continue praying for that person. I just felt that God wouldn't be handling prayer requests like an election...you get the most votes (prayers) you win.

 

I admit I have a major problem with the social hierarchy in the church and in my day to day life. I feel everyone should be treated equal regardless. Which was one of the major influences in my leaving Christianity. It was the catalyst that started the walls tumbling. Thanks for mentioning that book, I've got a lot of books I want to read but I am going to put it on my list.

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Why would an all-powerful and all-knowing god pay special attention to people who have lots and lots of social connections (and hence lots of people in their personal prayer chains)?

 

I've wondered that for years myself. Do they actually belive that god would heal someone because they went to a big church in a big city and had lots of friends, and ignore the plight of someone in the desert who seldom saw anyone? And when someone's "prayers are answered," do they really assume that those who weren't so fortunate didn't pray, or didn't do it correctly?

 

Unknowing1, perhaps god will "tell" your coworker that to take the arthritis medication!

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Line staff, eh? Her health policy probably doesn't cover meds, so sounds like she's channeling her frustration with health care (isn't it ironic that the fundy neocons are the ones in bed with the health market industry?) into her religious zealotry.

Just my speculation.

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My thoughts exactly

 

Thats what bugs me. If god is all knowing, hy do we have to beg for healing? Does god want us to humiliate ourselves? Like we are going to change gods mind!

24,000 children will die of starvation today. Why would god hear my prayers for a cancerous relative?

Thats why I more and more believe,,,,,,,,,,,,what god?

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I truly don't know what she would say about why God doesn't cure amputees. I figure she would probably just use the statement that God has his reasons. Hmmm, what reasons? I don't know about you guys but I haven't heard any reason except the usual you aren't faithful enough or you aren't the chosen one that explains it fully. Just the usual garbage that frankly someone who is sick doesn't need to hear.

 

As for having an employee who is "delusional", she's not my employee but if she was, unless she was bothering others or not doing her work I wouldn't mind. I'm sure she if she knew what I believed she would think I was delusional for not sharing her beliefs. However, I do believe that if I were a satanist and made the comment that I was going to pray to satan to cure me, I would have found myself in personnel in a heartbeat with a harrassment charge staring me in the face.

 

She has the same health care coverage as I do. We do have a co-pay for each prescription, $35.00. Having said that though, I don't know what her financial circumstances are so it very well could be she can't afford the co-pay. But I'm thinking not, she's getting a fairly good salary (over $38,000/yr.), her husband works and kids are all grown and out of the house. She takes trips to foreign countries at least once a year and is paying her way through school to ultimately obtain her masters in theology. Maybe she doesn't want to dip into the money she is paying toward her masters, that is more likely the case.

 

I know she belongs to a Southern Baptist church so that I think explains it all. She's just like all the zealots who change their interpretation of the Bible to fit their situation.

 

BTW, I overheard a phone conversation she had Friday afternoon where she stated she started to take her medication, seems all the praying may not have been working.

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It would be funny to print out a small flyer with the statement you just made Artur and leave it in the pews on Sunday morning. Their own hypocracy would be a hard pill to swallow when after griping about the statement they still failed to show up for prayer meeting.

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Even when I was a Christian I never attended prayer sessions.

 

Most christians don't. Prayer services or meetings are consistently among the most poorly attended of christian services. It's my firm belief that, on at least some level, nearly all christians know that prayer is not an effective exercise. It is, however, an important part of the mythology, so they keep up the practice.

 

But it's not like it's worth spending any time on it.

I attended prayer/Bible study the first few years of my Christian life, because I was much more devout, and set on doing all the things I thought a Christian should do (as in being in all the church meetings possible through out the week). Then I shifted to assisting with the youth meeting. You are right in that it's poorly attended; my small church had an average Sunday morning attendance of 100-125 people, while Wednesday night prayer/Bible study usually ran around 20-25. Perhaps if it was only a prayer meetning, even less would have went.

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