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Old 06-21-2008, 08:43 AM
 
Location: South Florida
553 posts, read 460,599 times
Reputation: 85

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I just had a Cal Thomas sighting and it reminded me of how thankful I am that I managed to get myself away from the clutches of Christianity. Christians often point back to "the life I used to live" and recall it with shame. The funny thing on my side is that I look back at my Christian life and remember it with a great degree of shame. Granted, there were some positive moments, but overall, I wish I NEVER made a commitment to that faith and to make matters worse, it was a branch of that faith that held similar beliefs to some I see promoted around these parts so I cringe. I watch and ask myself, "I used to believe that foolishness???"

I'm embarrassed I used to listen to charlatans like Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland. I contributed at least $1,000 in book and tape sales to their prosperity buying into their bull shiligit. I used to hang on the "anointed" words of Jimmy Swaggart and thought Jim and Tammy Faye Baker were being used by God (I think I just threw up). I actually drove all the way from Ft. Lauderdale all the way to Kendall (southwest of Miami) to hear a man tell his tale of how he was once a Satanic priest, but was now delivered by God. Dude turned out to be a liar and a fraud. I actually went to a drug rehab center in upscale Boca Raton, Florida to talk to troubled "white" teens (me a black guy) to tell them that heavy metal records were laden with satanic messages if they were played them backwards. UGH!

Not bad enough? There was a period of time when I used to listen to Bob Larson, self proclaimed Christian exorciser. There I was in my car on the way home from work listening to this guy claiming to cast out demons over the telephone when "demon possessed" callers would call in. I guess when the station stopped airing him, something in the universe was having mercy on my senses.

Then there were those moments in New York City when I was the only black guy in a Jews for Jesus service as I went through my Jewish love fest because hey, "they shall prosper who lover Jerusalem" says the Psalm and "I will bless them that bless thee (Abraham's children the Jews) and curse them that curse thee" says a Genesis passage. I even set out to learn Hebrew to show my alliance with God's "chosen people."

I can't forget the times I gave up opportunities to walk a path that might have led me to the NBA because I was seeking "first the kingdom of God and his righteousness" so that all other things could be added unto me." Pile of crock that was. Today my former church would probably relish the idea one of their own had such a potential to put them on the map, but back then, such things were discouraged as being too "worldly" and potential doorways to leaving God for worldly pleasures and personal glory.

Then there was that whole get married to avoid lust and fornication thing as instructed in the first book of Corinthians chapter 7:9. I recall watching friends of mine, 19, 20, 24 and horny getting married because it was "better to marry than to burn with passion." Lust was a sin too, so why not? Then this was further compounded by having children, lots of them by today's standard because they were a "gift from the lord." I can't count how many of them are miserable today, barely ever had the time to experience the world without the shackles of family life.

Did I mention being all giddy about so-called prophecies? Every week Jesus was coming soon and every butt itch by some large nation was a fulfillment of some vague prophecy. I must have purchased every book there was about the end times so there I was eagerly anticipating Saddam Hussein rebuilding Babylon. How's he doing nowadays, by the way?

Thank goodness I played the bass guitar for our church choir to avoid the pressure of acting like a madman, but to think I used to attend a church in my early Christian days that believed in a liberal expression of the holy spirit as they called it. People jumping around, falling all over the place, swinging their hands and punching people and some barking like dogs claiming they were speaking in tongues. If you wanted observers to know you finally arrived in God, you had to lose your mind and act like that. Wow!

Ok, before a whole host of Christians come running in here and trying to convince me that I had it all wrong or patronize me with the "oh, poor sinner. You're just mad at God for being taught wrong," let me set something straight. I was the height of my Christian experience when I broke free, grabbed my brain at the door of Christianity where I left it and bolted like a bat out of hell - literally. At that point I had long since graduated beyond all that nonsense. I was attending the beautiful and sublime Calvary Chapel of Ft. Lauderdale where teaching took precedent over theatrics and emotionalism. I was really having a blast. Was in love with Jesus and finally figured I hearing and taking the word with peace and feeling right at home. Was attending church because I wanted to and not out of pressure or to prove anything and then came that day when I stumbled into a fantastic Christian book and lost my faith. LOL...Go figure. A book that was supposed to strengthen my faith caused me to lose it.

Calvary Chapel was great, the people were great, the ambiance was great, the teachings were palatable and to the point but I just could NOT believe any of it anymore because the chinks in the armor could not be ignored anymore. I just could not lie to myself anymore and keep the doubts I had for years under the rug. No one in church hurt me. I did not have recurring nightmares of some priest molesting me. The hypocrites did not bother me because I was probably chief amongst them. Pastor Coy did not steal my money nor did he lay hands on me and claimed to heal me and he did not. I did not leave because I wanted to party, run after hot girls, drink and do drugs. I was NOT angry at God either. The Bible, the book I had been reading since age 4 at my grandmother's feet was finally placed into correct perspective and in doing so, I came face to face with reality. I finally saw the light and there is absolutely NO desire whatsoever to EVER walk down that road again. My faith crumbled because the book it was built upon was faulty through and through. The "anger" came afterwards AS A RESULT not as the catalyst, an anger at myself for wasting prime years of my life caught up in a fantasy.

It's Saturday. Generally dead on the message boards I frequent so here was my result of boredom. LOL
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Old 06-21-2008, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Log home in the Appalachians
10,513 posts, read 10,335,740 times
Reputation: 6870
yydanay, a little friendly advice and you can take it or leave it whichever you may decide to do is up to you. Consider it one of life's many learning experiences, learn from it and go on with your life from there.osay
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Old 06-21-2008, 03:26 PM
 
3,413 posts, read 6,455,431 times
Reputation: 1425
Quote:
Originally Posted by yydanay515 View Post
I just had a Cal Thomas sighting and it reminded me of how thankful I am that I managed to get myself away from the clutches of Christianity. Christians often point back to "the life I used to live" and recall it with shame. The funny thing on my side is that I look back at my Christian life and remember it with a great degree of shame. Granted, there were some positive moments, but overall, I wish I NEVER made a commitment to that faith and to make matters worse, it was a branch of that faith that held similar beliefs to some I see promoted around these parts so I cringe. I watch and ask myself, "I used to believe that foolishness???"

I'm embarrassed I used to listen to charlatans like Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland. I contributed at least $1,000 in book and tape sales to their prosperity buying into their bull shiligit. I used to hang on the "anointed" words of Jimmy Swaggart and thought Jim and Tammy Faye Baker were being used by God (I think I just threw up). I actually drove all the way from Ft. Lauderdale all the way to Kendall (southwest of Miami) to hear a man tell his tale of how he was once a Satanic priest, but was now delivered by God. Dude turned out to be a liar and a fraud. I actually went to a drug rehab center in upscale Boca Raton, Florida to talk to troubled "white" teens (me a black guy) to tell them that heavy metal records were laden with satanic messages if they were played them backwards. UGH!

Not bad enough? There was a period of time when I used to listen to Bob Larson, self proclaimed Christian exorciser. There I was in my car on the way home from work listening to this guy claiming to cast out demons over the telephone when "demon possessed" callers would call in. I guess when the station stopped airing him, something in the universe was having mercy on my senses.

Then there were those moments in New York City when I was the only black guy in a Jews for Jesus service as I went through my Jewish love fest because hey, "they shall prosper who lover Jerusalem" says the Psalm and "I will bless them that bless thee (Abraham's children the Jews) and curse them that curse thee" says a Genesis passage. I even set out to learn Hebrew to show my alliance with God's "chosen people."

I can't forget the times I gave up opportunities to walk a path that might have led me to the NBA because I was seeking "first the kingdom of God and his righteousness" so that all other things could be added unto me." Pile of crock that was. Today my former church would probably relish the idea one of their own had such a potential to put them on the map, but back then, such things were discouraged as being too "worldly" and potential doorways to leaving God for worldly pleasures and personal glory.

Then there was that whole get married to avoid lust and fornication thing as instructed in the first book of Corinthians chapter 7:9. I recall watching friends of mine, 19, 20, 24 and horny getting married because it was "better to marry than to burn with passion." Lust was a sin too, so why not? Then this was further compounded by having children, lots of them by today's standard because they were a "gift from the lord." I can't count how many of them are miserable today, barely ever had the time to experience the world without the shackles of family life.

Did I mention being all giddy about so-called prophecies? Every week Jesus was coming soon and every butt itch by some large nation was a fulfillment of some vague prophecy. I must have purchased every book there was about the end times so there I was eagerly anticipating Saddam Hussein rebuilding Babylon. How's he doing nowadays, by the way?

Thank goodness I played the bass guitar for our church choir to avoid the pressure of acting like a madman, but to think I used to attend a church in my early Christian days that believed in a liberal expression of the holy spirit as they called it. People jumping around, falling all over the place, swinging their hands and punching people and some barking like dogs claiming they were speaking in tongues. If you wanted observers to know you finally arrived in God, you had to lose your mind and act like that. Wow!

Ok, before a whole host of Christians come running in here and trying to convince me that I had it all wrong or patronize me with the "oh, poor sinner. You're just mad at God for being taught wrong," let me set something straight. I was the height of my Christian experience when I broke free, grabbed my brain at the door of Christianity where I left it and bolted like a bat out of hell - literally. At that point I had long since graduated beyond all that nonsense. I was attending the beautiful and sublime Calvary Chapel of Ft. Lauderdale where teaching took precedent over theatrics and emotionalism. I was really having a blast. Was in love with Jesus and finally figured I hearing and taking the word with peace and feeling right at home. Was attending church because I wanted to and not out of pressure or to prove anything and then came that day when I stumbled into a fantastic Christian book and lost my faith. LOL...Go figure. A book that was supposed to strengthen my faith caused me to lose it.

Calvary Chapel was great, the people were great, the ambiance was great, the teachings were palatable and to the point but I just could NOT believe any of it anymore because the chinks in the armor could not be ignored anymore. I just could not lie to myself anymore and keep the doubts I had for years under the rug. No one in church hurt me. I did not have recurring nightmares of some priest molesting me. The hypocrites did not bother me because I was probably chief amongst them. Pastor Coy did not steal my money nor did he lay hands on me and claimed to heal me and he did not. I did not leave because I wanted to party, run after hot girls, drink and do drugs. I was NOT angry at God either. The Bible, the book I had been reading since age 4 at my grandmother's feet was finally placed into correct perspective and in doing so, I came face to face with reality. I finally saw the light and there is absolutely NO desire whatsoever to EVER walk down that road again. My faith crumbled because the book it was built upon was faulty through and through. The "anger" came afterwards AS A RESULT not as the catalyst, an anger at myself for wasting prime years of my life caught up in a fantasy.

It's Saturday. Generally dead on the message boards I frequent so here was my result of boredom. LOL
That was an amazing post. Congratulations! You're a terrific writer. If you write and express yourself this way just out of boredom then it boggles the mind to think how well you could do if you wrote with a real intention. I'd buy the book of your "adventures in religion" in a heartbeat.
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Old 06-21-2008, 04:27 PM
 
Location: South Florida
553 posts, read 460,599 times
Reputation: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by ptsum View Post
yydanay, a little friendly advice and you can take it or leave it whichever you may decide to do is up to you. Consider it one of life's many learning experiences, learn from it and go on with your life from there.osay
Oh I have since done so ptsum, but before anyone thinks I have not because I am on this forum, writing, debating and sharing is a passion of mine. Some close to 10 years ago I used to have the same passion on Lycos.com's message boards BUT as a Christian. The passion has no changed, just the argument.
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Old 06-21-2008, 04:29 PM
 
Location: South Florida
553 posts, read 460,599 times
Reputation: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by laysayfair View Post
That was an amazing post. Congratulations! You're a terrific writer. If you write and express yourself this way just out of boredom then it boggles the mind to think how well you could do if you wrote with a real intention. I'd buy the book of your "adventures in religion" in a heartbeat.

You are the second person to tell me that and you know something, I REALLY think I am going to publish a book about my experiences for real. If I start from my indoctrination from childhood, I should cover about 25 or so years and trust me when I tell you, it was a hell of an adventure.

Thank you so much for your kind words and your encouragement. I finally think I can find something to do.
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Old 06-21-2008, 06:16 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma
6,884 posts, read 6,204,892 times
Reputation: 6181
Was the satanic priest guy named Mike Warnke? Kind of a short funny looking dude.
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Old 06-21-2008, 06:23 PM
 
Location: South Florida
553 posts, read 460,599 times
Reputation: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddie gein View Post
Was the satanic priest guy named Mike Warnke? Kind of a short funny looking dude.
Yeup!
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Old 06-21-2008, 11:50 PM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
14,330 posts, read 19,553,682 times
Reputation: 18436
Excellent post. You sound like a very enlightened individual.
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Old 06-22-2008, 07:31 AM
 
Location: South Florida
553 posts, read 460,599 times
Reputation: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexus View Post
Excellent post. You sound like a very enlightened individual.
Thank you, Alexus. One man's darkness is another man's light.
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Old 06-22-2008, 07:45 AM
 
389 posts, read 1,838,782 times
Reputation: 185
oh wow to the OP. you found the "enlightenment"?? of course you did not. as you admitted yourself you are the master chief of hypocrisy during your "christian" life. so i say to you YOU HAVE NOT BEEN ENLIGHTENED. EVER. even when you were doing your hypocrisy ALL your "christian" life. how can you? when you yourself said all the while you have doubts all along? it all comes down to accepting Jesus to your heart ... but i know you will just laugh at me coz u read them all, been there done that. but.. how can you? if you don't let go? (of your doubt.)

i also see the error of your "faith". you focus on the religion, the people who run the church, the pastors, instead of your personal relationship with GOD, HIMSELF. they are people. of course it is laughable, they're human beings just like you. all i can say is the Holy Spirit has not enlightened you yet and like i said IT can not because you have doubts.
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