religion 101

July 4, 2015 at 9:32 am 35 comments

.religion

I want you all to know that I read each comment.  Some took me a long time to read, so I can tell that you all put alot of thought and effort into your words.  Hopefully, my words will show just as much effort and thought.. and where I am at after this religion sidetrack….

At first, I was going to respond to each comment individually, but I got stuck and realized it would take me weeks to respond in detail to these well-thought out answers and I didn’t think it would be as valuable as this. (Recall I have that weird reading thing that makes reading difficult, even my stuff…. but writing is not affected). I also want you to know that I spent a whole session talking to Dr. Val about this particular blog and the comments.  I will probably spend my next session talking about these things as well.. Dr. Val, I believe, is both a religious person and a spiritual person, not that she has told me so, but by her responses to me and to the comments I shared with her.

And while this might seem to deviate from a foster care blog, the reality is that I struggle with the questions because of my life… and some of your foster children/adoptive children might have the same questions at any age.  As one of my readers said ” I once had a foster daughter ask me- if God loves me why didn’t he just make X stop drinking instead of letting me get put in care?”… so these are issues that are relevant to the children you care for.

april_francisThe easy one to deal with is animals.  It seems most people think animals are in heaven, irregardless of what religion says. That’s a good thing because it would be awfully sad in heaven without the pets that show us such unconditional acceptance and love. Some people mentioned the “Rainbow Bridge” which is a poem to relieve the sadness of pets that have passed.  It really is a beautiful belief and brings comfort to those wondering if their pets would be waiting for them when they die. I also can’t imagine that a higher being who created the animals would leave them behind. That concept makes no sense to me.  Click here for the link to the poem.

 

Suffering is the hard one…. and the comments ranged from the idea of free will to tSufferinghe idea that God/Jesus does not give you more than you can handle, to the concept of evil in the world.  From my perspective, none of the answers satisfed what I was looking for.  Not that it was expected, but there just doesn’t seem to be an answer that makes sense to me about suffering and why some suffer and others suffer less. Why is there so much suffering in the world, especially among vulnerable populations like children…

Some folks sugchurch-clip-art-eiMLebKingested I go and talk to a minister or pastor, but I can’t walk into a church without crying my eyes out.  The poor minister would probably want to just get rid of my crying self….throw me out the church door.  Although Dr. Val says, most ministers would talk to me and ask me what I need.

What I need is an answer that satisfies the pain I feel inside me, an answer that explains why things happen and why me?  I don’t think a religious leader would give me any better answers than the blog crew did…steep stairs_4c11500bc698a_hires

As for the questions about heaven, there was mixed responses.  Many people believed in heaven, but kind of created their own version, so that good people irregardless of their faith still got a shot at going up… instead of down.  For other’s, it’s like there is a gatekeeper who permits people to enter, but you have to know the secret password to get in… that secret password would be Jesus, according to most of the blog crew.

There were several book suggestions including “Conversations with God” which I actually have and the study guide that goes with it.  Got it at a used book store for 25 cents!  Other books seemed a little hard for me at this time, but maybe in the future – but for my blog crew, the suggestions were He Leadth Me, When God Weeps, Too Small to Ignore, Blue Like Jass, and of course the Bible.  Many links were given and a movie called “All Dogs Go To Heaven” was mentioned.

It seems that many people have their own view about what heaven is going to be, shaped by some religion teaching, but not one was 100% similar. Even among people of the same religion, views on heaven were different. Among the views, was an almost consistent belief that one needed a relationship with Jesus to get there.  Although some commenters did disagree with that and talked about being good and kind and caring.

The other thinimagesg that stood out to me was that several people considered themselves people of faith, but did not follow a religion. I guess that is where the difference between being religious and being spiritual comes into play.

If you have the time to read through all the comments, I highly suggest you do.  It is an interesting cross-section of people who feel passionate about a topic, but yet, many people differ.

For those of you that got upset that your comment did not post right away, I have no idea why.  I did not change anything, but wordpress kept stopping the comments.  Hm.. maybe in some cases it was a divine intervention…I should have looked for a pattern…

Peace you all….

jean_victor_balin_dove_clip_art_22251

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comments … and questions about Jesus talking trust

35 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jen  |  July 4, 2015 at 10:04 am

    I am fascinated by this topic and love and appreciate the diversity of beliefs that everyone has. Like you, I have spent years searching for answers (I was raised Catholic but no longer really practice organized religion). I definitely believe in God and am spiritual but my beliefs continue to evolve throughout the years. I highly recommend two books: “Seth Speaks: The Eternal Validity of the Soul” by Jane Roberts (it’s dictated through her by a spirit named Seth – fascinating but very deep) and “There’s More to Life Than This” – a much lighter, easier read by Theresa Caputo, aka the Long Island Medium (her show on TLC is amazing as well). You will see some similarities between them.

    Based on these books, as well as others that I’ve read (including Heaven is for Real), I truly believe that our souls have chosen to have a human existence in order to accelerate our learning and help us rise closer to God (and that many of us choose to come to earth multiple times). Believing that I have chosen to come here with the knowledge that it would be hard but that I would learn from it and become closer to God because of it gives me comfort in the hard times. I also believe that everyone goes to heaven and that there is no hell. Some spirits are just farther away from God (I think of it sort of as either a vertical totem pole or like kindergarten through 12th grade) and have more to learn than others and that we are all at a different place in our spiritual journey. I also believe that our main purpose is to learn to love and spread that love. Whether you realize it or not, you are helping teach this lesson by helping me and others connect with our foster kids and learn how to effectively show them the love we have for them and that they may feel this love even if they want to shut it out.

    Peace.

    Reply
  • 2. PurpleLindsay  |  July 4, 2015 at 10:49 am

    I like this post for so many reasons. Having read your blog for years, It feels like your heart is carefully treading into a place of wisdom and tenderness, asking hard questions and considering answers that are not black and white, and that bears a great beauty to it. Thanks for letting us see that part of you.

    You talk about this being a “religion sidetrack” but I just want to name for you that this is important, valuable work you are doing. The harm of abuse causes damage to every part of ourselves- including our souls. Losing the ability to trust in the goodness of another person, we also lost our ability to trust in the goodness of a creator. So healing, real healing that deals with all aspects of ourselves has to create space to honor, name, and reclaim the wounding done to us spiritually and honor the time and effort to seek Truth for our souls.

    You said, “The poor minister would probably want to just get rid of my crying self….throw me out the church door.” and I want to name that’s not true. Personally, I know what it’s like to struggle with the idea that all men will treat me the way a few men did, but growth has meant naming that’s not true, that all men are different and behave differently and many men act towards me with kindness. I would assure you that most pastors would have a great respect for the place you are in and very much honor your questions and your presence.

    And I just want to give another plug to Open Hears Ministry for a safe place to wrestle with questions about God with people who have experience and training in navigating trauma. The head office can probably connect you with a local group via email: http://bit.ly/1dEqjGy

    Reply
  • 3. Foster Mom in Training  |  July 4, 2015 at 11:23 am

    🙂

    Reply
    • 4. thebeautifulopportunity  |  July 5, 2015 at 10:29 am

      Hey Foster Mom in Training – do you have a blog? One of the things I love about LT’s blog is that it brings people involved in foster care – foster kids, foster care alumni, social workers, bio parents/relatives, and foster families – together. I’d like to check out your story. If you don’t have a blog, you can come visit me at thebeautifulopportunity.wordpress.com.

      Reply
      • 5. Foster Mom in Training  |  July 12, 2015 at 4:38 pm

        I do not have a blog. Thanks for the invite. 🙂

        Reply
  • 6. sageplant  |  July 4, 2015 at 11:48 am

    Thank you for your thoughtfulness. You are very kind to consider each response. And on a subject that brings such strong responses. The big “why” and the void of not being able to answer some of the questions is a struggle. But I know sometimes I get just enough to keep me believing in people and that there are really kind people and the really mean ones, well, they are the bigger struggle. I tend to think many were treated in some unkindly way themselves. Why it all happens, I have know idea. But to keep my sanity, I have to look at the good and let the bad sort it self out , hopefully not on my space to much. As far as this and Foster kids or any kids for that matter, stay kind, show love ,it’s all about the love.

    Reply
  • 7. bethanylest  |  July 4, 2015 at 11:58 am

    I too appreciated this topic. Many of the responses were different than what I believe, but I learned a great deal from reading all the responses. Amazingly no blog fights broke out, which is also nice to see that people could respect other people’s views. (hugs)

    Reply
    • 8. RFL  |  July 4, 2015 at 3:49 pm

      I agree that it was good that no arguments broke out. It could have really caused the blog to go down in flames. No pun intended.

      Reply
  • 9. Jai  |  July 4, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    The subject of religion is a personal topic, and despite many “same teachings”, yes, there are personal views that will be different because we all perceive things differently. I can’t always be on the computer because of my eyes and I feel hand writing it is more personal, but I bought a journal. In this journal, I write to God; it’s specifically for writing to God. Over time, I’ve looked back at my entries and I can see many patterns. I see where I’ve failed numerous times but also where there is growth and understanding. I also discovered that I have looked for things in life pertaining to what I’ve written, such as making sure of writing “little things” like me helping a woman with her groceries and the fact that there is still good in the screwed up world. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried something like this but it has helped me a lot. Perhaps, this making of your own Conversations with God may be helpful to you as well.
    Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers!

    Reply
  • 10. momma2abby  |  July 4, 2015 at 1:05 pm

    I’m glad this exercise worked out well for you. I was a little afraid it would be very stressful. I think a couple years ago it might have been. It seems like in a lot of ways you are getting stronger and more centered.

    My kiddo gets very triggered by Church. I don’t know exactly why, but I know it’s triggering for her so we currently don’t go. It’s too bad though because it gives a lot of people a feeling of peace and a community. Who couldn’t use some of that? But I’m not worried about her going to hell or anything because we don’t. I don’t think it works that way. God certainly would love and accept the kiddo no matter where she is Sunday morning. I do however have a church picked out if this ever changes for her. It is a nice gentle church that preaches kindness and concern for others. It is a church where women are very involved and can be ministers. I think it’s really important to go to a church that does not say that men are in charge of women.

    Anyway, good for you for trying this out. I know these things have really concerned you over the years.

    Reply
  • 11. s00147954  |  July 4, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    Those are some really tough questions you asked. I enjoyed reading the comments on your last entry also, although as I’m not religious I didn’t feel I really had much to contribute to be honest; religion just isn’t something I really give much thought to in my day to day life. I think it was great with everybody expressing themselves so well.

    Peace x

    Reply
  • 12. mv49496  |  July 4, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    Great that you are tackling these with Dr Val.The book you have sounds like a good one.The purpose driven life by Rick Warren is also great.Best wishes as you search for what you believe.Also know, you can ask Jesus for an answer or a sign anytime.
    MV
    Date: Sat, 4 Jul 2015 13:32:39 +0000
    To: mv_49496@hotmail.com

    Reply
  • 13. onemorewithus  |  July 4, 2015 at 4:43 pm

    Oh LT, how I wish I could just give you a tight hug just now!! I don’t know if I have told you, but I’m Brazilian, and Brazilians hug a lot! 😄
    I loved your questions and I do know Jesus loves you ☺️ Of that you can be sure!
    Thank you for reading all our lengthy comments. There was no way around it. Those were big questions with big answers. If I was chatting with you in person, I would have elaborated even more.
    We love you 💞 So ask us stuff and tell us stuff. We totally enjoy being here for you.

    Reply
  • 14. Linka  |  July 4, 2015 at 6:35 pm

    Happy 4th to you LT! I can only repeat my recommendation of Neale Donald Walsch’s “Conversations with God” series. I think you might find some answers there that will resonate for you. Blessings!

    Reply
  • 15. Robyn  |  July 4, 2015 at 7:10 pm

    I have two older sisters. The middle sisters husband passed away at 58, heart attack. Died on the way to the hospital…I wondered why her…why did this happen to her and not the oldest sister or me. Do I think there is a divine reason…I don’t know, sometimes I think there is and sometimes I just think it is just what it is. These things happened to you but could have just as easily happened to someone else. To say you were unlucky sounds cheesy but really I think it just happens. Why did my best friend get breast cancer and die young? I don’t know but she was a much better person than me. Why do good people have bad things happen to them and mean evil people keep living….I don’t know either. I am spiritual but I don’t think bad things happen to punish people. I think it is just chance. It is just the cards we were dealt, maybe for no reason other than your path crossed with crappy people. I just want you to realize that all of us that you might think have everything figured out probably don’t. As your blog says everyone has different meanings of things and what they believe, You just have to find what is right for you. I think you have a good soul….hang in there!

    Reply
  • 16. Anne  |  July 4, 2015 at 7:19 pm

    Wow! Yes you did get a lot of different answers to your questions. I wondered how you were handling all the different views and opinions. I read through most of them, too. I wish I could give you a hug. Really if you went and talked to a pastor and cry it is okay. My husband is a pastor and he hears it all from people when he counsels. He cries right along with the people. It’s emotional sharing from your heart. Blessings to you.

    Reply
  • 17. Stephanie  |  July 4, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    I also loved reading the responses. One thing that struck me was how the responders came together to give you a special truth they live by. The amount of time folks took to share their hearts with you was really beautiful also and I am amazed at how respectful people were towards others. Rarely do people with differing opinions behave so well online. It was awesome to see that unity with the purpose to surround you with the love we can offer online. Just beautiful. You have some amazing followers, LT.

    Reply
  • 18. bluejuliej  |  July 4, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    Why do you need a religion? And if you want a religion and a variation on Christianity isn’t doing it for you, why not try a different one?

    I’m Jewish (culturally, mostly, just do the High Holidays thing)… and there’s no heaven (you get buried in a box when you die and decompose; same thing happens to animals) and the emphasis tends to be on the doing-good-here-now (ie don’t be evil on the expectation you can repent at the last nanosecond and chill in heaven for eternity).

    I really, really don’t get the Christianity thing — the personal-relationship-with-Jesus, he-died-for-everybody’s-sins-and-everybody-should-be-grateful-for-that-sacrifice thing. I just don’t. But then again, the list o things that I don’t get is endless: the kardashians, solid state physics (despite being good at it grad school!), etc.

    If religion makes you feel better and doesn’t harm others — go for it. If religion doesn’t make you feel better, don’t be religious.

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  • 19. crochetbycalla  |  July 4, 2015 at 10:46 pm

    LT, I know this topic is something that has weighed on your mind for a long time and I think the way you’re engaging with it now really shows how much you’ve grown and I’m really proud of you! It’s great that you’re talking about this stuff with Dr Val, and I’m sure if you went to a minister or priest they would be happy to talk to you, even if you were crying. Peace.

    Reply
  • 20. helen hewett  |  July 4, 2015 at 10:56 pm

    L.T you have always impressed me but now my opinion of you has gone right off the scale. I cannot believe you read all the comments. I was going to read them all before I gave my thoughts and only got to about 8. I’m afraid my thoughts are probably not going to help you at all.’Though He slay me still I will trust Him!’

    Reply
  • 21. ritalee8383  |  July 4, 2015 at 11:42 pm

    It’s always a pleasure to read your postings LT. Discussion is always good. No matter what you end up believing my wish for you is peace & happiness.

    Reply
  • 22. mronningen12  |  July 5, 2015 at 2:43 am

    I don’t know if it will work to email you. I only have one answer to one of your thoughts. And that is that there isn’t any answer that will take your pain away and I wish there was. There ARE answers that can give your pain MEANING. Does that make sense? As far as suffering is concerned, I choose to believe that suffering is mankinds doing and not Gods. God gives us freedom to choose between right and wrong because he wants us to choose love and love HAS to be a choice that is made from free will, otherwise, it wouldn’t be love. I know that is confusing and doesn’t satisfy the inner need for justice, but it is what I believe. I do know that I don’t really want to believe in a God that I can fully comprehend because I need him to be bigger than my own thinking. I need him to be stronger than me. I don’t know if that makes sense. But anyway, I really hope you find your answers, that you find love, and that you find healing from the pain.

    Reply
  • 23. manyofus1980  |  July 5, 2015 at 6:01 am

    Lt I meant to comment to your last post on religion but it totally went out of my head.
    glad you got some answers, even if they werent exactly what you wanted.

    Reply
  • 24. manyofus1980  |  July 5, 2015 at 6:09 am

    Oh yeah and, happy fourth of July a day late! Did you have a good one? XXX hugs!

    Reply
  • 25. thebeautifulopportunity  |  July 5, 2015 at 9:39 am

    How we think about something is very powerful, LT. Here’s an example.

    Imagine walking down a path. Suddenly, you look up and a giant tree is there before you.

    You could be blown away by the majesty of the tree, seeing how it offers cooling shade, a home for squirrels and birds, how it offers food such as acorns, how its leaves create a soft music when the wind blows, how the wood can be used to build a home or furniture, how it cleans the air of carbon dioxide and gives you fresh oxygen to breathe, etc.

    Or you could be discouraged by this giant tree that’s blocking your path, seeing it as an annoying obstacle that forces you to veer off your path. You could fear it as an object that hides evil-doers who could be hiding behind its trunk to pop out at you. You could see it as an object that could fall down upon you, your house, or your car, smashing it to pieces.

    Is the tree good or bad? It depends upon how you see the world.

    So who controls how you see the world? Ultimately, it’s you. Society, family, friends, the media, religion – they will try to influence how you perceive what is around you. But you get to decide whether you want to step back and see things differently.

    How will you choose to view your suffering? As a torturous, unfair punishment? As a means to develop empathy for others, leading you to help hundreds of people through your blog? As a neutral happenstance, neither something good nor bad but something that just was? Or something else altogether?

    Reply
  • 26. Lana  |  July 5, 2015 at 11:50 pm

    The honesty and sincerity of your blog posts have stuck with me. You are in my prayers. I am praying that you find peace, truth and relief from the pain.

    Reply
  • 27. Emma Demirgil  |  July 6, 2015 at 5:21 am

    Check out Joyce Meyer ministries and find her testimony, i believe it will speak on a derp level to you, bless you.

    Reply
  • 28. lynskaggs  |  July 6, 2015 at 4:24 pm

    I know that none of your commenters/readers/blog crew can probably satisfy all your questions, I think your answers are probably between you and God. As for why some suffer and others don’t, this probably is also an answer between you and God….but I would say that it’s a combination of all the answers you were given. But I know this, God didn’t give you trials, didn’t cause your suffering and didn’t leave you to suffer alone. I know this isn’t how you’ve ever felt, and you’ve always felt alone but the amazing thing about God is that, as you’ve always felt like no one wanted you, but God always has, He has always wanted to be yours and for you to be His. He wants to give you the healthy safe love you’ve always wanted and needed. He loves you more than you can ever imagine and would never hurt you. I know that the idea of a Heavenly Father can be scary because of the damage your earthly father has done, and nothing can make you forget that damage….and God won’t undo what’s been done, but his love and grace and mercy are sufficient, you can find joy in Him. Good luck, I know this isn’t an easy path to walk!

    Reply
  • 29. KR  |  July 7, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    I have spent most of my life searching for the meaning of my suffering. I needed an answer to make sense out of it – to justify it. I didn’t want to live in a cruel world filled with meaningless pain. I searched religion, politics, history, psychology, logic, fate. My explanations ran the spectrum from being punished to being chosen. Ultimately, my search led me to this conclusion: Suffering is random without agenda or design. Those who suffer seemingly without fault or reason are neither being punished to atone for sins nor blessed with a higher purpose. When good people suffer, it is always blind, cruel, and meaningless. However, like love, suffering roots us in a shared experience. People, by nature, are self-interested. We live our lives in invisible cocoons that comfortably separate us from other people’s lived experience. The only way to breach this barrier is through love or pain. Love and suffering compel us to authentically act for others with consistency – to abandon our ego and risk everything for someone else in the dull, ordinary moments absent burning buildings or catastrophic events. Love – the preferred method – is intimate and limited. Nobody – no matter what they say – is compelled to genuinely love a complete stranger without serving their own interests. When I watch the news, I am outraged by ruthless genocide, abject poverty, and rampant discrimination, but my outrage eventually quiets. Our everyday lives distract us from a stranger’s torment. However, when I read a story (or a blog) about a foster child’s suffering, I am haunted. I can’t stop thinking about their pain – their torment distracts me from my everyday life. My suffering as a foster child rooted me in the suffering of all foster children. My suffering compels me to act for foster children who I have never met as though they were my own children. Pain connects us. Although the act of suffering is meaningless – like shared biology or culture, our suffering creates instant connections that are so profound, powerful, and motivating that – when the rest of world uncomfortably averts its glance and hurries by – we can’t walk away. Suffering makes those who are invisible to others – glaring to those who were once invisible too. Our suffering compels us to break out of our cocoons to end the suffering of complete strangers. Even though I loathe the thought of any child suffering, I am not haunted in the same way by other children’s pain. Like love, suffering uses our natural self-interest to build a better world for others. Love drives us to build a better world for those we love. Suffering drives us to build a better world for strangers. I was searching for meaning in the wrong place. There is no meaning in my suffering. Meaning lies in all that came after.

    Reply
    • 30. instantkarma85  |  July 7, 2015 at 9:17 pm

      I disagree. I truly and deeply love complete strangers every week. I am a foster mom, and almost every week I have a new foster child come into my home and i instantly love them, care for them and do anything I can for them. I was asked to take 2 little girls for mothers day weekend who were scared and had just been ripped from their mother two days earlier. They were 4 and 3 so they werent aware that it was mothers day weekend, but I wouldnt allow my family to celebrate it or mention it until they left Monday, and ran around like crazy with my 9 yr old, a 4 and 3 year old and my 2 yr old son. I catered to them at all times, stayed up until 10 pm singing to them when i had to be at work at midnight, because they were scared and hurt, and i wouldn’t turn my back on them and increase their fear that they were alone. I certainly was not doing it for my own interests. love is the only thing you need. most suffering is caused by a lack of love.

      Reply
      • 31. KR  |  July 7, 2015 at 10:05 pm

        I agree completely that most suffering is caused by lack of love. Love is a word that is very sacred to foster children. We view it through a different lens, I think. For me, love is reserved only for those for whom I would sacrifice everything that I hold dear. I care for many, many people in this world, but I only love a few. I can’t love people immediately because I don’t know them. Love is earned. Love is black and white. I have nuances for caring, but not for love. I don’t doubt your feelings or intentions. I am thankful that you were there for those children. By self-interest, I mean that people act to fill a need. When you see children scared and hurting, I suspect you feel compelled to comfort them and ease their pain. You couldn’t bear the thought of turning away. This is good – you care for others. You have a need that compels you to act. Many people don’t have that urge. Many people do not feel the need to comfort foster children. I care about the environment, but I don’t feel compelled to picket oil refineries. However, I am compelled to do everything in my power to improve the lives of foster children. It’s not a fault and it doesn’t make me a bad person – it’s just a matter of need. It doesn’t make your actions any less cherished by those scared, hurting children who desperately needed your comfort. It just means your human.

        Reply
        • 32. instantkarma85  |  July 7, 2015 at 10:38 pm

          I understand what you mean by self-interest now, I was taking it to mean something else. Thank you and ❤

          Reply
  • 33. instantkarma85  |  July 7, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    Hi LT, I wanted to answer you last time with a response, but this topic is an emotional and difficult one for me to talk about so i procrastinated, but I’m glad you brought it up again.
    I was raised Jehovah’s Witness. This religion is a mystery to most people. Some recognize it as a cult, some as an orthodox Christian faith, others just think it’s about not celebrating holidays… all those things are true.
    I have read the bible cover to cover 5 times in my life. 4 times as a witness and once after i left, where I thoroughly studied every other mainstream religion. I know it as well as anyone could, have studied each phrase from beginning to end for many hours and communed with others on it- I hesitated answering you initially because there is no way in which I can give an opinion that won’t offend someone. Jehovah’s witnesses believe if you are following the bible, you will follow ALL of its teachings, not just the greek but the hebrew scriptures as well- and they do that quite faithfully. There are a few exceptions, they dont practice polygamy, they do eat pork, and they don’t quarantine their women in tents away from the town when women have their periods… but they DO ‘disfellowship’ or ‘shun’ their friends and family that speak against witnesses, or are alcoholics, or have sex out of marriage, or cheat on their spouses, or are gay, or chronically over eat, or gamble, or masturbate, or steal, or lie. thats a long list, huh? shunning means no one from the congregation, even family members, can talk to or even look at that person until the religious leaders say its okay… usually after about a year.
    I was molested many times as a child, but whether it was the religion or just my parents, I never felt okay talking to anyone about it, I felt they would think badly of me and I would be in trouble. So i never did tell anyone, and constantly struggled with feelings of worthlessness and was very depressed most of my life. Of all the studying I had done in my life, the bible had one glaring message to me that damaged my soul more than any other had, though. Jeremiah 17:9 states: “The heart is more treacherous than anything else and is desperate. Who can know it?” This resonated in my being, and tortured me from the time I was young until a few years ago. The bible teaches you that you are incapable of trusting yourself, that you are wicked, and only through GOD can you be “‘washed clean with the ‘blood of the lamb'”… (jesus) This level of distrust in yourself can only prove to be harmful, as it was with me. The stories of Noah and his family, closing the doors to their ark against women pounding on the doors to save the babies in their arms, of Lot offering his virgin daughters to a crowd of people to rape and ‘do as they wish’, so long as they left God’s angels alone, of God using his Holy Spirit to exterminate thousands of people in one night because he got angry at them for worshiping an idol, for killing innocent firstborn sons of the Egyptians to prove a point, and many many many many other terrible, horrible stories of his jealousy, hate, anger, and injustice made me believe wholeheartedly that if he did have a heaven, I would want NOTHING to do with it. For that, I decided I was leaving the religion, and didn’t want to be associated with God in general, so I was kicked out of my parents home when i was 17, not able to finish high school because i left the religion.
    It took me many years of hating the bible, the idea of god, and all organized religions, until I realized I was wasting my time. I was hating an imaginary friend- whats the point? This realization is also brought about by much research, but a nice summation is the movie “Zeitgeist”

    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=youtube+zeitgeist+on+religion&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=2C44C7830EA0B5604B832C44C7830EA0B5604B83

    copy that above link and it will explain it well. It’s all just a story. the truth is so much grander, more beautiful. We are all connected, we are all created from the ground around us by evolution, that is why you feel so connected to your animals, because we are not superior to them, we are ONE with them. we are all related, and thats why people always want to belong to something greater, a religion, a social group, a family…. because it feels good to work together and join to form a common purpose, thats how we evolved to be, if we didnt learn to work together we wouldnt have survived, we need each other. there’s so much more to delve into, im barely scratching the surface, but dont trust a religion will take away your pain, it only adds to it with hypocrisy and judgement. Love is all it about. Find the one or many things you want to give your love to for the rest of your life and dont hold back. thats the meaning of life . thats the religion worth following. Love.

    Reply
  • 34. Another Time  |  July 9, 2015 at 1:04 am

    I like All Dogs Go to Heaven. (Oh my god it took me ten tries to spell that right!) It can be quite sad in parts but overall a good movie. There is even a sequal. It was pretty good too but I like the first one better.

    Reply
  • 35. claudine  |  August 5, 2015 at 7:03 pm

    LT, I’ve been thinking for some time about this post and wondering how to express what, for me, is true about the nature of God and life. Today I stumbled across this series of three short talks, which sum it up well. They may push your belief system or seem “new agey”, but to me, this kind of information presents a deeper kind of truth that has been very relieving to my spirit to learn about. If you decide to listen, you may want to go from left to right, and feel free to embrace only what resonates with you and discard what that doesn’t. http://www.kryon.com/cartprodimages/2015%20downloads/download_Minneapolis_15.html

    Reply

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