Sent in by Jackie
I have been visiting this website for about 2 years now and have made a few comments. I appreciate everyone's honesty here -- even when it's brutal. You guys have helped my husband and I become confident in who we are and what we don't believe. It's good to know that we aren't alone out there.
I figured it's about time to put my anti-testimony and a couple of rants. So, here goes...
I grew up in a spiritual didn't-really-know-what-we-believed atmosphere. In other words, we had no idea what being a Christian really was and didn't care. But we called ourselves Christians because... still don't know why. We started going to church when I was 17. At that time I was starting to dabble with smoking pot and having sex so my mom thought it would be good for me. It made me feel guilty enough that my senior year in high school I was a super holy-roller. I also became introduced to Master's Commission and felt that was what God wanted me to do. For those of you who don't know, Master's Commission is a 9 month discipleship program where you don't work, date, go to school, etc. You learn scripture and become completely brainwashed into their way of thinking and living. It was a good excuse at the time to not go to college. When I look back at the two years I spent in that program, I get ticked that I didn't go to college instead. This group is a cult stemming from the Assembly of God cult. They recruit kids just out of high school and make it seem appealing with music, and theater-type productions. Oh, and the travel... you get to go all over the country spreading the lies.
I did my first year of that program in Phoenix and my second year in Springfield, MO., where I now live. (I'm from Oklahoma) I didn't know what to do with myself afterwards so I got a job and spent a lot of time at the church. I was so used to the non-stop ministry that I all I did in my spare time was church. I couldn't move back home because now my parents where a hindrance for what God was calling me to, which I still didn't really know what that was. But I felt that I was to stay in Springfield.
Three years later Tommy and I started dating. We had been friends for 2 years before. We had something in common (well, a lot, but this was big). We both saw that most Christians were total hypocrites and didn't really know what they believed. We were going to change that.
We got married 9 months later. He was going to an Assembly of God bible college. I was working, waiting for God to open that door to his will. Tommy was going to be a pastor. Maybe start as a youth pastor.
One day he came home and told me something that neither one of us had ever heard and had a hard time believing. His theology pastor told the class about how the word "virgin" in the Virgin Mary was added about 200 years after the book itself was written. This started our descent into freethinking.
We both decided to research everything we believed. We both came up empty handed when it came to proving our faith. I had always been intrigued as to why atheists knew more about my faith than my fellow followers did. I was going to change that.
We went down the progressive Christian path following the teachings of Rob Bell and Brian McLaren. We soon found the folly in that. You either are a bible-believing Christian or not. You either believe all of it or you don't.
We realized that every Christian we knew pretty much made up his or her religion. They cherry pick what they want to believe and throw out things like following the Sabbath or giving all of their possessions to the poor to follow Christ.
Finally, after all the research and all the bullshit we endured my husband looked at me and said "you know... I don't think I'm a Christian any more."
What a relief for me because I was starting to think that I didn't have reason to believe anymore. I prayed and prayed for a sign... got nothing. I pondered the very existence of religion, Christ, free-will, etc. I came to terms with the fact that there is no such thing as free-will in the realm of Christendom. There is no proof that Jesus walked the face of Earth or any of the events in the Bible even happened and religion came about by the ancient people in an attempt to explain the world around them.
Walking away was easy. Then there are friends and family. That's a whole other story which I will not go into now.
It's been 2 years and I have never been happier. I feel like I am a better person now. I am aware of the world around me. Instead of being heaven-bound now I'm planet conscience. I care more about the earth than I did before. I am a more honest person. I have nothing to hide or hide behind. Most of all I feel comfortable in my own skin and appreciate myself for who I am.
P.S. If there is anyone out there that was in Master's Commission I would really like to connect.
Online Reading List
- An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish by Bertrand Russell (1943)
- Bible Teaching and Religious Practice by Mark Twain
- God is Imaginary
- Is there an Artificial God? by Douglas Adams (1998)
- Skeptics Annotated Bible
- The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine (1795)
- Which Way? by Robert Ingersoll (1884).
- Why I Am Not A Christian by Bertrand Russell (1927)