From Christianity to?

Discussion in 'Spirituality/Worship' started by Denamay, May 2, 2009.

  1. Denamay

    Denamay New Member

    I have watched this board closely for the last while.

    I first posted because I had let my Christian faith fall away and wondered what next?

    I was a " born again christian" for many years, but came to doubt the whole story.

    I now think somewhat like Jam, with a bunch of other stuff thrown in for good measure.

    About looking at self in the mirror; I have learned in my 70 years that it is a life long process.

    It is like the Bible says in the book of Corinthians " We see through a glass dimly". We are also promised a time when we shall see clearly.

    My work as a social worker led me to questian many of my beliefs. I learned that some things that the Bible defines as sin are hard wired into the brain.

    I studied, attented workshops etc. and found that I was not only wrong about many things but ignorant as well.

    We are all the same yet different from one another,and try as we might we can not see the picture or hear the music in exactly the same way.

    We come from different family backgrounds, cultures and even weather condidtions, all of this and so much more, make us see things from different points of view.

    It is like the bible says there is one body but many parts, some seem more important than others, but all are needed to make up the whole.

    I notice as I write this that I have held on to some Christian teachings and have let others go, this is good is it not?

    Love to all who have helped sort out my ideas and helped me along this bumpy road of life.

    Wishing you all sunny, sunny days!

    Denamay

    P.S.
    Vivian, if you read this, I offer my sympathy to you and your family for your loss.

    By reading your posts I know you will heal and gain new knowledge. Love again from Denamay


    '
    [This Message was Edited on 05/02/2009]
  2. vivian53

    vivian53 Member


    Hi Denamay. You ask a good question. If you have read any of my posts you can see that I struggle with the same questions and issues that you do. I don't know what is next.

    I didn't know you were a social worker, but I am not surprised. That you chose that as your career tells me what kind of person you are. That you have seen human nature at its worst, and at it's best, firsthand, speaks volumes.

    I agree it is such a long bumpy road and will take me a lifetime to sort out my beliefs also.

    Isn't it wonderful that here on this board are people of all different faiths that we can learn from. I love diversity.

    Thank you for your sympathy and confidence in my ability.

    I look forward to talking to you more.

    vivian
  3. vivian53

    vivian53 Member



    I just want to start out by saying you don't have the mindset to hijack, you are too thoughtful to do that, and that I like your posting.

    I am with you on the mega churches. It breaks my heart to see the same hypocrisy you are talking about. It has always bothered me.

    But then there is the Salvation Army. I really can't say enough good things about that church. Their financial dealings are transparent. No one has to wonder how the money is spent,. 60 Minuets tried twice to do an expose on them and ended up doing a program on their dedication to helping the downtrodden and their genuineness.

    I think many people question their church doctrine and that questioning is healthy and necessary. It is for every other endeavor, why not our spiritual journey?

    I understand that you have found peace is not understanding. Before I came to the board I never even considered that as an option.

    vivian
    [This Message was Edited on 05/03/2009]
    [This Message was Edited on 05/03/2009]
  4. Denamay

    Denamay New Member

    Thanks for your input Jam, I will track down the book and let you know what I think about it.

    Rainbow, I have to agree with you that the joy is in the journey.

    Vivian, I will explain later about the deal breaker re. the christian faith for me.

    I love your posts, I think you must be very nice lady.

    More later, Denamay


  5. Sacajawea2

    Sacajawea2 Member

    I wrote this late last night and then took it down this morning, but decided to put it back up...hope it's not too graphic in regards to the second half.
    Denamay, I applaud you for feeling safe enough to ask/search and figure out what it is you need.

    **************************************************************************************

    Denamay,
    What I find interesting is that what defines a Christian...an estimated 2 billion who call themselves such around the world...can vary immensely from one to the next...it's estimated also that worldwide there are upwards of 37,000 (yes, you read that correctly) DIFFERENT "Christian" denominations...so doctrines and beliefs vary wildly.
    I'm writing this to say that with that in mind, it makes sense that you might question parts of what you believe, as there are many others who do as well. I hope you can find comfort in your faith or get some answers, however that may work for you.
    It used to be one just accepted a religion or faith or that they were born into...but with worlds melting together, many question their path and venture out of what they were born/raised believing for those very reasons. And some chose not to believe at all.

    The family I married into ran a home health care agency and worked closely with hospice...I used to transcribe reports from nurses as well as occasionally attend to those in their last hours, observing only for monitoring the ones in charge, never allowed to step in and help but just take it all in and write the report. It was very difficult to know all my reports were on those dying, and to see them w/ families (and sometimes no family) sure changed me in many ways.

    For me it helped me draw closer to my particular religion, and the work was just part time. But anyone who has a job that deals with the worst things in life (and I'm sure social workers are in that category), it makes it so much harder to just accept things. I haven't written up any reports in about three years now but I haven't forgotten many either, or what I've seen. I found I could only discuss these delicate situations w/ others who worked w/ the dying and kept my information to myself for more reasons than just the privacy act. I almost didn't think I could do that sort of work but I wouldn't take it back for anything, for it taught me a lot...compassion and love and brought me closer to my God...that I'm assured that this is only temporary, although hard for most to grasp that. There is nothing fair about suffering and death, that's for sure.

    And I've seen suffering, and I've seen those just hanging on no matter what...I just hope you can find what you need to bring you peace and comfort. And as horrible as what I dealt with was to just everyone, I also noticed how determined humans are to live...even ones with horrible circumstances, just wanted to live. That assured me that we as humans have a desire to keep going and I just wish everyone could feel comfortable in what they believe. I admire all who are conscious of their spiritual needs and reach out...I don't fear death myself in the sense of what will happen to me, but I'd like to be around for as long as possible.

    And Vivian, know if you are reading this that I have been thinking of you and almost felt like an invisible observer in my imagination, wanting to reach out but hesitant over a public board. I also transcribed reports from home nurses and just pray (and know) that all worked out for you...of which seems to be the case. I know with your background you knew what to do for your father and family.

    Didn't mean to make this so serious but felt like I needed to get that off my chest. I've often wondered what it must be like to be a social worker, and my heart goes out to you and Vivian for the work you've done...what a heavy life to have. I hope some of it has been rewarding despite the circumstances.

    So Denamay, bravo to you for speaking your mind and looking for strength. I sense you still have faith, just lots of questions. I'm glad you feel safe enough to express yourself and hope you keep learning.

    Love,
    SJ
  6. jole

    jole Member

    As many of you know, I can be somewhat blunt when it comes to Christianity. Many years ago I called myself a christian...but I wasn't. At that time I did follow the teachings, but did not have Christ in my heart. I think that's the same for anyone here who says they were a christian but are no longer. For once you become a Christian, accepting Jesus as your Savior and allowing the Holy Spirit to work, there is no going back. You and He become one, forever.

    You cannot be a true Christian without acknowledging the supreme love and sacrifice of Jesus, and the willingness to live a life proclaiming His goodness to others. He is the way and the light; the way to eternal salvation. He is goodness personified. His love is everlasting and all He asks of us is to believe.

    Yes, Christian churches may have different doctrines, but doctrines do not make faith. Faith is inside me, something between me and my God...a oneness that cannot be destroyed by anything or anyone. It is there to stay. "Churches" have nothing to do with it...a church is not a denomination; not a building. It is the connection between Jesus and His people. Do not confuse the two.

    "For this God is our God forever and ever; he will be our guide even unto death." Psalm 48:14 Love***Jole***


    [This Message was Edited on 05/03/2009]
  7. Denamay

    Denamay New Member

    Hi Jole,

    Blunt is ok with me.

    I am not sure how to answer your post; I can only say, that once I did accept Jesus Christ as my savior and followed the call of Holy Spirit as I felt led.

    I was sincere in my belief and continued in my faith for many years.

    I seem to have had some kind of brain shift this last while.

    SJ.
    Thank you so much for your post re. hospice care etc. very interesting.

    I have done a small amount of hopice training and work.

    To share with a person his transition from this life to the next is a sobering experience.

    From what I have seen, passing can be either peaceful or tramatic, but it does not seem to relate to a persons belief system.

    Jole with her nursing experience most likly can speak to this better than I.

    Good night all, Love Denamay
  8. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi Denemy,

    I enjoyed reading your post. I really liked the tone. Though you didn't go into specifics as to what you believe, or don't believe, I got a strong sense that you have developed a firm "Spiritual Footing" for yourself.

    A firm spiritual footing implies for me that, although we may not have certainty in all areas of our lives, we can learn to trust that everything will unfold in time the way it's supposed to. It also implies for me a certain patience with ourselves and our path.

    There's an old saying that I've always like. "The wheels of God grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly well." I believe the wheels of God (whatever one's perception of God might be) are slowly grinding for all people, whether they are of of a religious nature or not.

    I just can't go along with certain philosophies which state that God somehow finds favor only with those who believe a certain way. My own belief: I think God would like to have us believe what makes sense for us. To me it's all a part of each individual's path toward greater truth.

    All the Best, Wayne
  9. vivian53

    vivian53 Member


    Denamay you started a good discussion. You seem so grounded.

    Rainbow, when I feel wish I was where Julie, Jole, Wayne, Jam and so many others are I repeat "The joy is in the journey." I have to tell myself to look at all I have to learn and experience and that I can be excited and embrace that.

    SJ How do I say this...I know what you are saying and I truly appreciate it. I understand that many of us have seen some very ugly things doing the kind of work that we have. There are many stories that I don't tell either, and not because of confidentiality, I can change them up enough, but rather to spare others the ugliness, or sadness of the situation. No need to taint their minds with things I couldn't forget even if I tried a hundred years,

    I am glad you got that off your chest. The work you did was hard but so necessary and rewarding. As hard as the work that I've done has been I wouldn't trade it for the world. It has been my calling. And just to keep myself honest, it's the only thing I have been really good at so what else could I do?

    I got my CASA kids 2 weeks ago. Four children who where removed from their home due to abuse and neglect. It is so sad but I am being rewarded. The oldest child is about to graduate from high school, and because she is in foster care the state will now pay for her college. She and I are working on her attending a university in the fall to study physical therapy. How wonderful is that!

    love to all of you,

    vivian

  10. Sacajawea2

    Sacajawea2 Member

    Oh I'm so glad you understood what I was saying...many times over you understand! I can't compare myself in any way to Jole, as I was not a nurse...but I have the most respect for nurses (and social workers).
    I married into a family of nurses and PTs...that's so wonderful Viv, that you've got your CASA children now and a PT is an excellent career...that was the other family buisness.. they had six thriving clinics in the area and that's another rewarding job. I know my inlaws (ex now) and I wish my son would go for that. None of the children took over so they sold everything when they retired..but that is so great about the oldest child. I hope she goes for it!


    SJ

  11. Denamay

    Denamay New Member

    Just wondering what is meant by CASA kids?

    Maybe something different in the U.S. than in Canada?

    Does this mean that you are fostering four children [lucky kids]?

    Hope I am not being too nosey, but I am interested what you are doing.

    Love and good luck, Denamay
  12. vivian53

    vivian53 Member


    No you're not being too nosy. I can't think of anything that you would ask me where I would feel that way. According to my mother I have never had a secret or known a stranger. : ]

    CASA is what I am, a Court Appointed Special Advocate. I am a volunteer only and help the children that have been removed from their home by the state, mainly through advocacy. I won't go in to details, but here in Texas it takes a very bad situation for the state to do a removal.

    My job is to represent the interests of the children to the court. It is different than the guardian ad litem. Since I am unpaid I have no allegiance to anyone but the children.

    I help get their needs met, whatever they may be, at their placement (usually foster homes), in school, in visiting their siblings etc.

    When I got on disability over 10 years ago I lost part of my sense of self. My identity was so tied up in my work that I felt lost and useless.

    I am now able to give a little again and it helps me feel good. I guess it's one of those the more you give the more you get situations.

    love and peace to all,

    vivian