I don’t believe in God, but I believe in this word from him.

comments 9
leaving Christianity / the godless side

A friend of mine told me “a word from the Lord” that she had for me.  She doesn’t yet know about my unbelief, but she was at least minimally aware of some difficulties we’ve had in telling others our decision not to return to the overseas mission field.

“God is saying that your entire life, you’ve dictated your actions based on what other people would think of you, based on their expectations of you, and how you could best please them.  Whether it be your parents or just people in your life, you did things and didn’t do other things because of these expectations.  But now, you are free from that.  You can finally do what you want for you, and God is saying that He is on your side, whatever you choose.  He’s letting you choose, and He’ll back you up in that decision.”

Regardless of the fact that I don’t believe in God, I think she said a lot of truth.  I’ve made mention of a past abusive relationship before.  This isn’t something I talk about with many people, but I think it reveals a destructive pattern in my life: I sacrifice myself (in an unhealthy way) in order to make someone else happy. Whether it be succumbing to a burger joint rather than mention my preference for a salad, or allowing myself to be emotionally abused so that I can fill another’s insecurities, I have a terrible time really standing up for myself and evaluating what I want or what’s best, most authentic, most freeing for me.  I’ve discussed this in this blog post.  So really, what an incredible GIFT my unbelief has been for me, for this very reason!girl-162474_1280

If I were to believe in God, it would be one that would say something like this to someone like me.  Why?

1. I think God’s number one concern would be for the freedom of people, NOT making sure people believed in him.

2. I think he may allow me to stop believing in him if it meant it would free me from being bound to others in an unhealthy way.

3. Despite what some have said to me, I think he is still pleased with me, because I am making incredibly difficult choices for the sake of authenticity.

 

Now, to truly decide what I want to do with my life, with today, with this moment, without the weight of any other opinion looming over me!

 

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The Author

I'm a closet atheist christian missionary. Paradigm shifts happen frequently for those who allow themselves to think critically about currently held beliefs and openly about new ones. I’ve developed the skill, or perhaps addiction, for change but the community around me is slow to catch up -- and would damn me if they knew where I stood.

9 Comments

  1. Brilliant. I really think that a God that cared about nothing but the recognition of its creations wouldn’t be worth worshipping. It’s a reflection of our human insecurities and tribalism, why would an all knowing being be so petty?

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    • Yes, exactly! Insecurities and tribalism — what great insight! It really is a silly thing, t believe God so petty as to care so much about people believing in him. Egocentric much?

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  2. Andy says

    Yes, the anthropomorphic projections. I’m a fan of some of the aspects of Buddhism, and they have a saying that goes, “If you see the Buddha on the road, kill him.” Basically meaning that in your life (the “road”), no matter what your perception of god is (the Buddha) it’s wrong, so you should do away with it (kill him). Because to believe in a god “out there” means that you are taking an aspect of your subconscious and projecting it onto an imaginary deity in the sky. So to take back your subconscious and take responsibility for your humanness is very very freeing. And honest.

    I’m inspired by your courage, Teal. Thanks for sharing your journey with us.

    Andy

    Liked by 1 person

    • I always appreciate your thoughts, Andy. You offer a new insight to my posts. Are you saying that by no longer believing in a diety that I’m taking back personal responsibility for incorrect belief, because even if God existed, no human could believe in him/it correctly?

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  3. Yes! That’s it. 🙂 By owning your own thought patterns and behavior (i.e., instead of projecting them onto a being in the sky), it is a step towards personal integrity. To be honest with yourself when human nature tends to pull you in the opposite direction (tribalism) takes great courage and a willingness to accept the downside of being a person. And I think when we accept the downside in ourselves, it’s easier to have compassion with others. After all, they’re only human too. 🙂 No diety required. And like you said, even if God does exist, any human perception of said deity is not reality (Descartes’ “Res Cogitans” [how we perceive things] vs. “Res Extensa” [how things actually are]). If you’re interested in that line of thinking, check out Descartes’ 2nd meditation. http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/phl302/texts/descartes/meditations/Meditation2.html

    And if you’re not interested, then just ignore that link. (Ha!)

    You’re doing fine the way you are going, Teal. I’m very happy that my words have had a positive impact. I always look forward to your posts. I feel like I learn a little more about myself by reading your journey. It goes both ways. So thank you.
    Andy

    P.S. Isn’t tea a wonderful thing? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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