The Controversy

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The other night, Steve and I had a long talk about a post I had written, but wasn't yet sure if I wanted to publish it.  Steve stopped reading my blog entries on a regular basis after the first week, so he has no idea what I write about most of the time.  

I did show him the one about Napoli because I had never really gone into very much detail about my first time with anyone before.  Figures that the first time I do, it would be in a venue where everyone and their brother can read it.  Oh well, it's one of those things that if it can help someone it's worth it, you know?

But enough about that, we were talking about my hunny.  Steve and I come from completely different religious backgrounds.  He was raised Nazarene, while I was raised in a slightly more eclectic environment.  My parents disagreed about which denomination to be a part of, so neither one of them went to church.  My grandma [on my dad's side] watched Jimmy Swaggart and Rex Humbard on TV and read her Bible and called that church because she didn't drive and couldn't get anyone to take her.

Unless you count the few times we went to Black Oak Church when my uncle would drive grandma, my cousin Tresa, and me down to the middle of the boondocks, to hear my grandma's second cousin [yes, in my family all that mattered] preach. 

My uncle Jake refused to take us back after the cousin preacher misquoted a well-known scripture numerous times in a sermon ["Father forgive them, for they know not what they do"… he said, "Father forgive them for they know what they do."  Jake threw a fit and said he'd never go back. I don't think he ever has, either.] 

I must confess that I wasn't heartbroken about it since the preaching was boring as well as being scripturally incorrect.  Plus, there were no other kids who went, so it was all pointless.  I was related to half the congregation, too, but I didn't really have anything in common with them, so I just felt uncomfortable being there.

My mom didn't like Jimmy and Rex, and was very vocal about it, so I learned to be suspicious of televangelists, and various other 'Christians' that various relatives had problems with.  [Everyone has an opinion in my family, and most of them are different].  

My mom was always interested in the occult, so I had access to books about Witchcraft and various New Age practices.  I never had her telling me that a certain religion was 'the right one.'  My dad never really talked about his religion, but his values and morals were pretty much in line with Christianity [for that matter, so were mom's, minus the mystical stuff, of course].

Yeah, so anyway, my other grandma was a member of an independent Christian Church [no link to the denomination since that's the point… each individual church pretty much runs itself.  I think there's a loose affiliation, but I have no clue where to find it].

So my Grandma pestered my mom for years to let me go to church camp, and after seventh grade, I finally went.  I remember that I flipped the camera off in group pictures that year.  It was also the year that I watched Stand By Me and it changed my life. πŸ˜‰ I don't know how many of you have seen that movie, but it's rated R for language.

I really loved that movie, and I still love to cuss.  So anyway, there I was, an all-out heathen in a Christian Church Camp.  Hee hee.  I was myself, and the kids all pretty much liked me, but I imagine the counsellors thought I was something horrible.

No matter.  My nature is to not give a shit what the  'authorities' think of me, and develop my own ideas and opinions, so I wasn't too worried about it. 

I became a Christian the first time when I was eighteen.  I converted at church camp.  It was the first time in my life I had really begun seeking God's face, and initially, I found A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson.  About halfway through the book, it was time for camp again.  It was the last year I was going to be able to go, so I went. 

I was very vocal about my search for God.  I knew I needed Something in my life, but didn't know what it was.  I felt empty, and was trying to figure out how to fill the void.  So at camp, I gave my life to Jesus, and went home.

I am by nature an enthusiastic person, and I was really excited about the new joy I felt and I just knew that as soon as I told my friends what had happened to me, they would all want to become Christians too.

Well, I was only eighteen.  My friends [who may have been Satanists, I'm not really sure] stopped speaking to me.  I had no church family to go to for support, and after a couple of weeks, I prayed and told God that I couldn't do it.  I literally renounced Christianity, and promised that if I lived long enough, I would come back to him later, but at that time I just wasn't strong enough. 

Weird, I know, but typical, don't you think?  I didn't disrespect Christians, but if someone asked me if I was one, I always said no since it was the truth.  I always felt it was more important to be honest about stuff, so I always told the truth as I saw it, and dealt with the fallout as necessary.

I'm still like that [dammit] which leads me to the problem I am currently dealing with. 

Heh.  I've written a freaking book here, so this will have to wait until tomorrow to finish.

Sorry.  I got diarrhea-keyboard [maybe it was that loogie from earlier! πŸ˜› ]

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2 responses »

  1. I had my first shakeup-of-faith in college, when I learned about cultural relativism in a cultural anthropology class. It’s sort of fallen apart gradually for me ever since. Read up on memes, especially ‘religions as memetic systems’, and that will chip away at your faith, too. Not that you want to do that.

    I like to think I’m spiritual without believing in anything in particular. The ultimate in agnosticism . . . I know that I can’t possibly know anything. Which, yeah, I know, doesn’t make a hell of a lot of sense.

  2. I googled the meme thing, Doug. Interesting stuff. It doesn’t really shake my faith to the point that I’m gonna drop it, but I think it will help me continue this journey I’m on.

    Thanks for commenting.

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