(Closed) Where does your faith come from?

posted 7 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 17
Member
3170 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

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@Peachytalk:  

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@Bridey77:  

Love both of your testimonies, very beautiful!

Post # 18
Member
2167 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@MrsPanda99:  

My faith in God comes from my battle with addiction. I have struggled with severe alcoholism for about a decade and all throughout that I outright ignored and dismissed the God I was raised to believe in. In the mental fog of my disease I figured at best he didn’t give a damn about me and at worst he hated me and had it out for me (why else would he cause so much misery in my life???).

About two years ago things were extremely bad. I was at my lowest and was rapidly approaching the jumping off point…but before I gave up I surrendered myself fully and completely to whatever Higher Power might be out there and might be able to relieve me of myself. I had no expectations and nothing to lose by that point because I was a complete mess. But guess what? It worked and I am still sober and happy and free today.

I would never be where I am today without my Faith. Honestly though, had I not ended up at that jumping off point where I either had to find something to hang onto or literally die, I sometimes wonder whether I would have ever found God. I would have had no motivation to do so. But boy am I glad I have faith in my life today. Ever since I surrendered two years ago I have never, ever had to walk alone.

 

Post # 19
Member
5217 posts
Bee Keeper

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@Nona99:  I have the utmost respect for other people’s faith. I think that it is awesome that we live in a country where we can have that kind of diversity. I am a HUGE supporter of seperation of church and state because I believe that it protects my right to worship. I don’t believe any religion should be involved with government. I do however, believe that Christians, Jews, muslims and Atheists should exercise their right to vote as private citizens. I will talk all day about my faith to people who WANT to hear about it. I won’t however, force a message on someone who isn’t ready to receive it.

 

Post # 20
Member
10357 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

I think, in large part, it is how people are raised. It’s not coincidence that faith has geographic and social boundaries, or that families tend to have the same beliefs. If you’re raised in a Christian family, where you are told from birth that Christianity is the only real truth, and most people around you are also Christian….you’re probably going to be Christian. There’s a tremendopus amount of social pressure to conform, and of course, you want to believe that what everyone else believes is true, so you start thinking that “god” is really talking to you, etc.

I’m an athiest and have also done a ton of research on global religions….most religions follow the same pattern of social indoctrination, alms, bringing new followers into the fold, and raising your children in the faith to ensure that the church grows/gets richer….I don’t think it’s coincidence.

Post # 21
Member
9800 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

I don’t know, I was raised Catholic (though my parents weren’t super religious).  I was never really that into it but I found out that I really did love to study religion (it fascinates me).  So I have a BA and MA in religion.  But all that did was further cement my agnosticism. 

What I have the most problems with is that most people don’t understand that the Bible isn’t even a book in the sense we think about it.  That’s probably why religion fascinates me so much, because most believers know very little (IMO) about historical background and the languages that go into it but they base their lives on it sometimes.  FWIW I read biblical Hebrew and ancient Greek (among others) and it really helps to understand it better (like any text in its original language).

Religious people certainly don’t bother me, only those who use their religious beliefs to push it on others or make laws regarding others.

Yale has a very good Open course on it the Hebrew Bible and New Testament for anyone interested.

http://oyc.yale.edu/religious-studies/rlst-145#sessions

http://oyc.yale.edu/religious-studies/rlst-152#sessions

So in a way, that’s where my non-faith comes from Smile  There’s no way any Abrahamic-based religion could ever appeal to me.

Post # 22
Member
11522 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2009

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@Peachytalk:  

Awesome! 🙂

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@MrsPanda99:  

I came to know the Lord through my maternal grandmother, who had a lifetime filled with testimonies of what God had done for her and her family and who not only talked the talk but walked the walk. She was filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit and a love for Jesus and other people that I have rarely — if ever — seen in the life of someone I know personally. Throughout my life, she and my aunt served as rock-solid examples of people whose lives were fully committed to obeying, serving, and following Jesus Christ, no matter what the cost, and also of God’s overwhelming faithfulness to them (and to so many people for whom they prayed — including me.

I first accepted Jesus’ as my Savior when I was quite young. However, I didn’t fully commit my life to Him and make Him my Lord until I was in college. I have walked with Him for more than 30 years now as an adult, and He has been more real to me than anyone or anything in my life. I have no doubt whatsoever that He is real, because He has proved Himself faithful to His Word — over and over again — in my life. He has transformed my way of thinking and living in a way that could never have happened had I not surrendered my life to Him. I have watched Him do amazing things. My absolute favorite place to be is in His manifest presence. His love is like no other.

I probably should add that I went to public school my entire life and hold an undergraduate degree and a graduate degree from secular universities. I am practically off the charts in terms of being analytical and logic-driven, and I ask TONS of questions about all kinds of things. I do not find my faith to in any way be in conflict with this. Keep asking questions — He is real enough and big enough for you to find Him no matter HOW much you dig. 🙂

Post # 23
Member
5398 posts
Bee Keeper

For many people, it is through adversity of some kind. I always considered my Christian growing up, even though I was pretty clueless. At 20 I got very seriously sick, and that’s when I came to understand and know faith. I don’t strictly follow any organized religion, but I try to work on my personal relationship with God, and that’s what is important, to me. 

Post # 24
Member
916 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@MrsPanda99:  My parents are annoyingly religious. I grew up having to say the roasary with them every night, spending my weekends in people’s homes saying the rosary yet again, spending the rest of my weekend in churches watching people get healed and speak in tongues and shake all over the floor, and some of my teen years were in the youth ministry and going on retreats. Parents are Catholic, which I haven’t related to in a while, but H is technically Catholic also so we will go to a mass once in a while.While I have enjoyed attending Unitarian Universalist masses, H isn’t a fan of it. So we’re at an impasse for now. It’s strange because he is a very logical thinker, but I think he’s just so used to all that Catholic school that he was put through.

Anywho, H and I both consider ourselves spiritual and sort of Christian. I believe in God because I had an experience that like a PP said, once you experience that you can’t forget it or deny it happened. No matter how much I dislike some of the people I’ve seen preach or some of the messages being spread, I still believe in a divine power. But I don’t really believe everything in the Bible.

Post # 25
Member
899 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

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@MrsPanda99:  Please please don’t worry about the things that you do that you think are “bad” and you definitely can’t ask the wrong questions.

Does Alpha exist where you live? It’s a course run by churches to help people find answers. It helped me find my faith, even though I find it a bit preorganised. There’s another similar course called Christianity Explored which does a similar thing. A lot if the people who take part in these courses are not Christian. Some become Christian as a result of the course and some don’t. They are a good forum for questions and discussion.

Post # 26
Member
1199 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Opposite for me. I was raised Lutheran (which I loved cuz it was super laid back and accepting). I went to church every weekend, and an awesome Christian summer camp every year, I even taught Sunday school to kids for a few years, I really *felt* God in my life. But when I was a late teen or so I just stopped believing, I’m not sure how to explain, its not just that I “lost faith”, it just suddenly seemed completely unbelievable to me, I actually sat down and read the whole Bible and it just seemed completely ridiculous (sorry not trying to offend). Since then I have been an atheist, luckily my DH is too. Honestly the older I get the more I can’t believe I ever was a believer- of course I was told as a child that God is real, etc.

Post # 27
Member
2116 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

MrsPanda99   

 

For me: My faith comes within. just like if you asked a mother how she loves her child so much. it just is for some people and they cant explain. My religious journey started young. i went to a private catholic school for most of the time. Seriously there was a time i wanted to be a nun.  but around 13 i wanted to be wiccan…… people go threw fazes so ….yeah. anyways i went threw a part of finding myself and what i personally wanted to believe in. But after a lot of searching i found my self right back into being christian. My dad died at 17 and then i just fell into it after crawling out of my hole. Some times you dont find it….it finds you. I just started seeing the world with no doubt in what i believe in. i mean it still took years after that but in a way im lucky i did. Im still catholic but there are many things i dont believe in or agree with when it comes to the church. Things i feel are true in my heart. And i dont judge anyone else for feeling the same about their religion. Many things i dont agree with but a lot i do. Plus going makes me feel nostalgic about my family, who is no longer together since we are grown up and my dad is gone. Too me there is something soothing about the catholic church, its so serene. DH thinks its a little boring. but i find it theraputic. It doesnt come so easy for DH. idk why but hes not as sure as i am.  or he still has so many questions. like most humans. i also think it just doesnt have to do with how you were raised but weather or not you are an optimist or pessimist. I think if you thought there was really nothing after life….just nothing at all then you have a really sad way of looking at things….and too much of a realist. since most people say thats really all they are. And maybe my proof has been the things that have happened to me and how much i have prevailed. Too me and some people they only have to look in a babies eyes or a sunset and they just see god. I have also been in a situation where i was close to death and i never thought i would be so scared, even knowing that god was there for me. i guess when you’re hanging from a cliff you decide right then and there if you believe in God or not. One of the things i know i believe in is good. and god is good. And that anyone who is good even without knowing god exists will be loved by God. I also believe that you cant prove anything and everything. Humans are always obsessed about knowing it all. I think the truth is beyond human comprehension. We are still animals after all. … Some times you just have to trust your gut. And well i do.

 

Post # 28
Member
11231 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

Why do you feel the need to have something to believe in?

Post # 29
Member
436 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2010

I’m a Christian, and I wouldn’t consider myself ‘religious’.. but I do go to church weekly, I worship in my free time, and I actively work to grow my relationship with Christ. As a teenager, when I was trying to find the truth, I asked God to show it to me. He did; and I have never had doubts since.

I have seen things with my own eyes; things that I can never un-see. Things that totally validate what I believe (to me). I have seen people change with the help of God. I was one of them.

Post # 30
Hostess
10361 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2014 - Chicago, IL

@MrsPanda99:  I’m the same as you. I can’t figure it out and I don’t think I ever will. People say all the time “I know because of the little things that happened in my life that HE showed me.” Either I don’t read into what happens in my life or they are full of shit, I’m not really sure. I stopped believing at a very young age and had a lot of backlash from friends and family about my beliefs. I never judge people or say anything mean to their faces, more just like “oh that’s nice.” No one has ever been able to give me a concrete example of how “he changed their lives” or “showed them the way” they always just say “he just has I can’t explain it.” That’s not good enough for me :/

Post # 31
Member
12244 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2013

@MrsPanda99:  I was born Catholic, converted to LDS (Mormonism), and am now Lutheran with DH. I also played around with Far East religion and agnosticism in middle/early high school.

I guess it’s always been in me–both of my parents are a little “off”, so I’ve always needed a loving, omnipotent caregiver. For me, God is absolutely essential–though I believe in a loving God that accepts ALL His children–of all religions, all sexualities, colors, everything.

That’s why I don’t feel bad about switching religions so often–God knows I love Him, thank Him, and pray to Him, and I don’t think it matters what religion you are–God is listening and watching and loves you!

Also, there is nothing creepier than that last sentence–I know!

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