why do some people get upset when speaking about God?

Michelle - posted on 05/25/2012 ( 245 moms have responded )

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If you state your opinion about you believe in God. Do you have people criticize you and put you down all because you believe there is a God?

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Angela - posted on 05/28/2012

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I'm a Christian and my faith matters to me. Having my faith does not give me the right to judge others negatively or to forcefully impart my religious views onto them.

The problem is that the very nature of religion (ANY religion) means that the followers of each particular faith regard theirs as the "one, true faith." When you're passionate about your faith and your religious values you want to share this with others, not just those of your own faith with whom you fellowship, but also those of different faiths and those with no religious beliefs at all.

Some people's religions are tied up in the general culture of the individual's community and are very hard to break away from if you find you prefer another religion or you've decided that there is no God, no afterlife etc and now profess to be an atheist.

I'm quite uncomfortable with the stance some Christians take in the way they relate to people of other faiths or with agnostics or atheists. The God I believe in created all persons equal, He gave them all a free will and we believe God loves the non-believers just as much as anyone else. If you regard yourself as a follower of Jesus Christ you're expected to win converts by making Christianity irresistible to those who are yet to claim Jesus as their Saviour and not by ramming our faith and values down other people's throats. Making our religion attractive isn't done by being judgemental, unkind etc ... It's a very poor witness for our Saviour for Christians to even display bad manners and a lot of negative stuff about the behaviour of some Christians goes a lot further than bad manners!

There is no harm in an intelligent & lively debate with people who are not Christians but unfortunately some Christians are very poor debaters so skilful communicators (who may be atheist or agnostic - for example) might well get the upper hand in an online discussion - or a real life, face-to-face discussion. Christians may then say they are being "attacked". If you can't handle a religious debate and make skilful input yourself, then don't join in!

I'm afraid to say that there is frequent conflict even within the different denominations of Christianity itself. The bloody years of violence in Britain during the Reformation where Catholics were tortured for being Catholics and Protestants were burned at the stake (or drowned at the stake) - just for being Protestants are very poor testimony for all "Christians" involved at the time. And it still goes on in some parts of the world - Christians warring with other Christians. If we can't keep things happy, peaceful and joyful even within our own religion, how can we ever relate well to people of other religions, or with those of no faith at all?

I don't have all the answers, I don't even have all the questions!

Good wishes to all reading this!

Krista - posted on 05/27/2012

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Bernadette, I can't speak for all atheists, but I have no problem with a religious person stating their beliefs. However, what I DO have a problem with is when they try to force everybody by law to live by those same beliefs. If a religious person has certain laws and regulations imposed upon her, then why can she not be content with living her OWN life by those religious laws, as opposed to trying to get the rest of society to live by them as well?

It would be akin to a hardcore vegan trying to have meat banned across North America.

Jodi - posted on 05/25/2012

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People who don't believe get criticised for not believing too. Not sure if you've seen that or not. I don't think this is exclusive to people who do believe in God.

But honestly, if someone is asking for genuine help on a thread, and I see a post saying PRAY PRAY PRAY, my first thought is, well, if they were that way inclined, don't you think they would already have thought of that, so how about contribute something practical now?

Jenni - posted on 06/01/2012

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Michelle, before you cry persecution for Christians... I really think you should read this:

http://thesocietypages.org/socimages/201...

Atheists are by far the most hated, least trusted and in-tolerated group in America but you don't hear us crying persecution at the hands of believers. And if we venture back a little further in history, it was us non-believers who were being burned alive as heretics at the hands of Christians. Now this does not give us license to be intolerant of Christians in modern times and any atheists who are, I personally strongly disagree with their behaviour.

However, I am allowed to disagree with you and other Christians respectfully. I will not be kept silent with cries of persecution when a religious individual is the one being intolerant of others.

Jenni - posted on 06/01/2012

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Angela, I just have to say that I very much enjoy reading your posts and your contribution to this thread. As I think all of us on both sides of this debate do. I can appreciate a difference of opinion and am interested in hearing it when it is expressed eloquently and respectfully. Thank you for that. I also think you provide an excellent example on how to witness for your faith without putting others on the defensive.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

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Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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At any rate, ladies, I think we've exhausted this topic, and we seem to be on a bit of a high note, so why don't we put it to bed? Thanks for a thoughtful and invigorating discussion!

Krista E.
WTCOM Mod

America3437 - posted on 06/01/2012

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Who ever said I was a "devout christion"? I simply said I believe in God. I pray to God and try to do right by people but a devout christian i am not. I don't believe such a thing exisits!

[deleted account]

I have to share this:

Yesterday was the last day of school. I get very attached to my students throughout the year (Grade 9- 15 year olds)

One young lady has a very special place in my heart, and I know she is very proud of her Christian faith. Her mother wrote me such a long heart-felt letter thanking me for educating her daughter, and all the special little things. Her letter ended with "God bless you and your family over the summer." Am I offended? Oh hell no! I cherish this letter!

Maybe on page 2 or 3 I referenced one young man who will most likely end up in the ministry one day. Gave me a hug on the way out and asked, "Mrs. F will you visit my church over the summer?" 100% YES- I will. He wants me to be a guest speaker at youth group for a book study! I asked him to send me the information and the youth pastor's number. And then his buddy Dylan peeks in, all giddy, last day to sign yearbooks and leaves with "Have a blessed summer Mrs. F! I pray that I run into you."

Oh ,and when you're kids WELL, and can crack jokes......this is what I said when I pulled aside a few kids from my 5th period class, "What do you get when you have a Christian, a Muslim, and Jew in the same space?"

They tried coming up with all kinds of answers.....but the answer was "Middle Eastern PEACE- in MY classroom in Arizona!" They were hysterical!

These kids mean so much much to me, and just becasue they are religious and I'm more or less a non-practicing Jew does not make our student/teacher relationship any less and I respect their faith 100%. But not one of them have ever tried to persuade or convince other that their faith is superior to others. All accepting.

[deleted account]

That is a global question. Most of us tend to put others down when they don't share our beliefs. Perhaps not "put us down" but certainly question THEIR beliefs.

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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ROFL, Megan. "Attacking Johnny, with realistic drop-kicking action!"

@America:

Yes Krista I am aware of that and your point is....

I was just mildly amused. I don't often see devout Christians borrowing philosophies from other faiths.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 06/01/2012

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Jenni, DH guesses it's because of the Industrial schools. I'll have to read that later.

Dove, you made her sound like an action figure. Get your fully poseable 'Attacking Johnny' now!

Yes I really do need to get out of the house more.

Dove - posted on 06/01/2012

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I am a Christian and proud of it. Some of my dearest friends are atheists that have responded on this post and they have never treated me badly because of my beliefs. They have as much trouble agreeing with my beliefs as I have in understanding theirs, but I do my best to give respect to them and they do to me as well.

People with a million different beliefs CAN coexist peacefully if EVERYONE remembers to respect their fellow human being. :)

And 'attacking' Johnny? That's just wrong. ♥

Jenni - posted on 06/01/2012

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Megan, funny thing is that here in Canada (where I know you reside now) a similar study was done and the majority said they trust the non-religious more than the religious! I find it difficult to wrap my head around that one considering we have almost the same percentage of Christians as the US. Maybe we have a stronger dislike for "organized" religion? I'm really not sure how to interpret that study.

Let me see if I can dig it up:

"The online survey of 1,522 people, commissioned by the Montreal-based Association for Canadian Studies, also showed relatively low levels of trust in religious leaders, with 48% of respondents attributing the trait of trustworthiness to clergy.

By contrast, 67% of those surveyed said they trusted “people who are religious” in general, and even more respondents — 73% — expressed trust in “people who are not religious.”

http://life.nationalpost.com/2012/04/07/...

Stefanie - posted on 06/01/2012

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agree im jewish an it hard at times when everyone asummes everyone is christen an that the only religon thst is right an when the nutty ones try to make everyone follow there belif that when it bad

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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Heh...America, you DO realize that karma is a concept used by Buddhists and Hindus, right? ;)

Johnny - posted on 06/01/2012

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"Thank you Michelle. I found your last post to be much more empathetic to the other side and your beliefs expressed in a way that is not offensive to those who may not believe the same as you."

Ditto!

America3437 - posted on 06/01/2012

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My step father also found God but he doesn't have god in him! He is still treating people the same way and it has landed him in jail again! I believe in Karma and he is really getting his! I pray for him to feel God in his heart and to learn to live right but it is up to him to accept christ in his heart!

Jenni - posted on 06/01/2012

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Thank you Michelle. I found your last post to be much more empathetic to the other side and your beliefs expressed in a way that is not offensive to those who may not believe the same as you.



And yes, the "persecution" goes both ways, that is why it is important for those of us who are aware of it, to advocate for tolerance and acceptance of all groups, even if not our own. I can stand up for a Christian who I see being unjustly attacked and you can stand up for an atheist who is experiencing the same. We need to lose this us vs. them mentality. It accomplishes nothing.

Michelle - posted on 06/01/2012

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Megan,
I will have to say, not all athiest are bad of course, same as believers. Your ex husband, just because he says God is in him doesn't mean he had Him in him. Which in my opinion, he didn't. I dont speak for all christians. I believe in God, I cannot say that I am the best person in the world, because I know I am not. Just because you are athiest, I don't look down to you. You can be one of the most caringest persons in the world. You may not believe, that is your right. I'm sorry your ex did what he did to you. But not all believers are bad. Apparently if your husband was a true believer, he wouldn't have done any of those things to you or his family.

Michelle - posted on 06/01/2012

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Megan, I don't see in any harm to praying to God for those who don't believe. If those who don't believe has their minds set. Then what is the harm in that?

Jenni, I understand what you mean about not just christians are being persecuted and so are non believers. I see that many are being criticized and judged for all things in general. Yes, they may have been nonbelievers that has been burnt. I do believe that many have been tortured that didn't believe and even believed that was uncalled for. Heck, I don't think torture should even be allowed whatsoever. I don't care who you are.. I think it's wrong to a certain extent. I can see if someone goes out here and kills a child, murders a family, rapes, and tortures someone should have the same done to them. Just like many people has murdered and put in jail and let back out. I do think they should be killed the same way they killed someone else. Unless it was self defence.
However, yes, many has been hurt and killed. They will be resurrected back. Those in my opinion who did wrong will get punished for their actions. Wether you believe in Jesus Christ or not. You can read in a bible about how He was tortured and scorned. He was brutely murdered. He did nothing to anyone except give love to many and look what He got in return. It would be the same as a nonbeliever not doing a thing to someone and got tortured and murdered. I do see where you are coming from.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 06/01/2012

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Now you see America, my husband is an Atheist. He's wonderful, caring patient and understanding. He treats my older daughter like his own and has a lot of patience with my bi-polar disorder and my disinclination to be a better house keeper.



My ex husband on the other hand decided he's a born again Christian after breaking no fewer than 5 Commandments (including that one about commiting adultry) He's been cold, cruel and Abusive towards myself and our daughter. Nice eh?



This and what I've seen from so many politicians who want to call themselves Christian while dictating what others should believe is why I'm disinclined to fully believe in any organised religion. I'd rather believe that God wants us all to be happy and believe in Him or Her as we see fit be it monotheistically or polytheistically.



ETA:Jenni Thanks. I read your link that you provided. It was quite interesting. I didn't know Atheists wre that villified.

America3437 - posted on 06/01/2012

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God exists in the hearts of those who believe. The choice is yours to make! If you don't believe in him then you can never understand him or know the blessings he brings and that is sad to me but it doesn't mean that you are a bad person it just means you don't believe in God. I was raised by a athiest and he was a mean black soul but that doesn't mean every athiest has a mean black soul just as my belief in God doesn't make me supieor to non believers.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 06/01/2012

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IMO it's rude to pray that someone will change their beliefs. If you want to pray for someone to get a job, feel better, have a safe trip, or have a less painful labour and delivery fine. But don't pray that someone will see the light and come to God. God will probably figure why are you wasting my time by wanting to alter that person's free will.

But Michelle L you are right that no one should push someone down for their beliefs. I don't care what you believe. I'm an American who now lives in Canada who has taken care of all sorts of different people from different walks of life and different religious affiliations. You want to believe that praying to the 64oz Bubba Keg mug of tea helps you work better fine. You want to believe that God deligates (He does so there :P ) and that's why you pray to Saints to assist you with things fine. Your beliefs aren't harming anyone even if the tea thing is a tad silly. Most of us are just fortunate to live in countries where we can believe in what we wish. You can even make up your own unofficial religion if you want- just ask my brother and his friends who founded Bootyism back in grade 8

Michelle - posted on 06/01/2012

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Stephanie,

No, you don't have to be a religious person to be a good person. Not all people are the same of course. I guess that is what makes all unique in their own ways. Sometimes in my opinion, someone can act mean or do something bad, but they still have something there that is good. We all do. Wether we believe or not, there is acts of heroism, acts of kindness and love. I know I have said things to people that may not be right or not nice. But , I do also try my best to act the way that God would want me to act. Not being nice or saying mean things, diffently isn't Godly at all. I am not to push God that I believe in on anyone. That is their choice to choose.
You, everyone else and even I all have good in our hearts. Like I had said, we all have love in our hearts, but it needs to be shown more. Too many do show more hatred than good in my opinion.

Johnny - posted on 06/01/2012

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Geanine, I hadn't intended to "beat you up" and do not believe I did. And I really think you need to look more deeply into your definition of bullying. If you think that you are bullied by someone trying to point out what they see as a hypocritical statement, I apologize. I do think it is unfortunate than rather than reflecting or considering what I was saying, you simply cry "bully" and tune it out.

Also, I'm not sure why you are assuming that people are making assumptions about you. I don't think anyone here has stated that they thought you were a right-winger with a closed-mind.

Michelle - posted on 06/01/2012

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Geanne ,
Stand your grounds. If you believe there is a God. I feel the same way. Too many does criticize and judge. May God be with you always.

Michelle - posted on 06/01/2012

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There are so many who wants to persecute or judge others all because they don't believe the same as you. If you believe in God, you are to stand tall to it. Wether you may have someone who isn't a believer that may want to put someone down. They aren't going to be pushed away from God, if they don't believe. They may not believe not, but one day` maybe they will see. Of course those who don't believe are saying that, we will see that there isn't a God. Noone has any right to persecute, to judge, to criticize or downsize anyone else all because they don't agree with the other.
I have seen so many people judge me for my belief in God and so many people judge others who believe as well. Those who don't believe in God, feels that they are being attacked all because they don't believe in God and don't feel that they have the same God as Christians or believers do. I do not try to push anyone down. Wether they believe or not. I do pray for those who don't see that there is a God. They may be saying right now, that they are sick of someone praying for them. But what those people don't see is. It is not to put you down, It is simply a kinded hearted person with Godly love that is trying to ask for your best . That is all. No christian or believer is trying to make you change your beliefs, For we cannot. Only God can do that in His own time. So, since you don't believe in Him, then you have no worries then do you?
People needs to think about others, not to judge and criticize and so on. Christians aren't trying to push their beliefs on the nonbelievers, they are putting their truths of what they know or feel out there, the same as nonbelievers putting their claim into not believing a God. That is why we all have freewill.
I will say that in my opinion, if someone cannot say something nice and say the hell with them or whatever. Why even write your opinions? That is trying to overpower someone else and I guess it so called makes them look big, which it belittles someone to criticize. I am diffently no saint at all, There is not one person who is, besides the Jesus that I have learned about. We all sin. But those who do believe, comfort those that are similar to you and pray for those who don't. Those who don't believe...I wish the best for you to what ever makes you happy.

Stefanie - posted on 06/01/2012

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my mom was right ypou dont have to be a religous person toi be a good person .i dont go to sevreis but i try to be a good person seeing all this negitivey going back an forth make nme belive what io belive more an more cant we all just get along

Jenni - posted on 06/01/2012

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Michelle,



I'm not sure if you're still following this thread but I just want to say to you and others who feel put down by simply offering Christian advice to other posters on COM or bringing up god. I think Angela touched on something vital to offering this sort of advice. I don't think any of us want you to feel you cannot bring up your god or your faith on a public forum. It simply comes down to *how* you do it. By not assuming that the Christian god is something everyone believes in.



I see nothing, absolutely nothing wrong with some good Christian advice and not just other Christians can take that advice. Some teachings of the Bible can be very helpful to non-Christians as well. Even if they do not believe the Bible is the inspired word of god. I understand your faith plays a vital role in many facets of your life and I don't think you should have to hide that. But I feel it all comes down to how you phrase that advice:



"I'm a Christian, and I'm not sure if you are too or believe in a higher power but this is what I would do as a Christian."

or

"...I found this passage in the Bible inspirational and wise and I think it applies to your situation. I'm not sure if you believe in the Bible, but I hope you may find inspiration in this too, even if you do not."



There's always going to be people out there, especially in the anonymity of the internet who are... let's face it... jerks. And are going to find fault in something you say. Ignore them. I've met them as an atheist. Ones that by simply admitting my atheism had some pretty choice words for me. We both experience it, that's why it's even more important for us to not stoop to their level and lead by example on how to be mutually respectable and tolerant of beliefs outside our own.



You also have to be prepared that no matter what advice you give on the internet (whether it's religious or not) you're going to have some people who disagree. It's important to know the difference between someone disagreeing with you, and someone who is actually being insulting and putting you down.



I think you started an interesting discussion Michelle, (even if heated at times) one that I feel is very important to discuss. One that we were able to express our personal boundaries and maybe walk away with a better understanding of others personal boundaries and how to respect those and show tolerance.

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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And I hardly see where Johnny has been "beating people up". However, if you do feel that she has in any way violated the rules of COM and been abusive, then please feel free to flag the post(s) in question, and it will be reviewed by the moderators.

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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Geanine, as many people here have explained repeatedly, NOBODY is angry with the OP for believing in God. Seriously.

Some of us just get irked when she, and others like her, pass their belief off as complete and utter fact, and use incredibly shoddy information on evolution and science to try to prove their point.

You would likely get annoyed if I knew little to nothing about Christianity, and was saying all sorts of incorrect things about it, right? Well, it's much the same principle.

Geanine - posted on 06/01/2012

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No, I was talking to Johnny . As for the original post I think everyone should have a right to share their views on what they believe and how it pertains to there life. I think the poster should be comfortable being able to talk about it without people being angry with her. I don't need anyone to come to my point of views and if you think you're talking to a right winger with a closed mind you got it wrong.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 06/01/2012

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Johnny, that was a beautiful story.



I'm tired so I don't have anything else to add... cookie?

Geanine - posted on 06/01/2012

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This sweet story from someone who beats people up on a computer website!

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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Geanine, simmer down. Your grammar is fine. There are simply SOME posts that have been put on this thread that are within a hair's breadth of being completely unintelligible. I hardly think that it is "un-Christian" to ask someone to write more clearly so that we can all understand what we are trying to say.

And yes, I echo Johnny. Are you praying for Angela because you genuinely have her well-being in mind and want God to bless her and keep her? Or are you praying for her because you're annoyed with her and want her to come around to your way of thinking?

Geanine - posted on 06/01/2012

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No it's not an insult it's a better choice than indulging you with your bully behavior . As a Christian you should understand but I guess you pick and choose what pertains to you. That's ok, I have faults a plenty. I will say that I don't mind people disagreeing with me. I'm educated in the art of debate. But plain snarkiness and demeaning banter is not my thing. Sorry if I didn't capitalize God on my phone. I'm busy with children and don't have time for 2 page posts.

Johnny - posted on 06/01/2012

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I am truly always baffled how people can manage to make "I'll pray for you" sound like an insult. But yet, here on COM, I see people manage this feat on a daily basis. It just puts this image in my mind of a giant hand coming down from the heavens and striking them down as a they offer this "prayer" to God:

"Dear God, someone insulted me on an online forum and I think they are a jerk so can you please make them agree with everything I say and be nice to me? Amen"

Geanine - posted on 06/01/2012

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Does your Christian like behavior call for being mean and insulting? To question my grammar. I'll pray for you.

Geanine - posted on 06/01/2012

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I'm talking about my everyday life with other "Americans " . I do have a belief system that I have a right to have. I believe in anyone's right to believe in what they want to and to respect others for theirs. If you are having a conversation with friends and what they believe comes up and how they apply it to their life I will listen with a whole heart and I think people who believe in god should get the same respect . The fact you took all the time to type out what you did baffles me.

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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Johnny, what a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing that.

And you know, people, it's stories like THAT, and people like Angela, who actually DO make Christianity look somewhat more appealing. If you want to be an ambassador for your faith, then BE loving and Christ-like, not just the lip service of "loving the sinner" in order to make yourself feel virtuous.

Angela - posted on 06/01/2012

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QUOTE:

"I think that I have a right as an American to talk about what I believe in when I am referring to what I'm going through in life. People always criticize if you just say the word god . It's unfair. The bible says that we will be persecuted for our beliefs"

OK, Geanine, to examine your post as I've quoted above ....

Getting criticism for using the word "god" - mentioning God in a contribution to a thread which doesn't actually mention God in that thread's opening post, will leave some readers wondering why. If you prefix your mention of God with something like "I'm a [ whatever religion you may be ] and I feel ..... etc, etc ... then readers can see that your mention of God is relevant to your perspective as a follower of a religion/value system that recognises God. To merely drop God into your response kind of ASSUMES everyone else is on your wavelength, understands about God, believes in God and recognises God's relevance to the topic being discussed.

Personally, I'm a Christian and I always capitalise the G when I write about God. But each to his/her own, I suppose!

Going back to the beginning of your post, you say "As an American ..." when talking about your "rights". Here's another little hint to help you - this is another example of assumption. I am British, there are people who have added to this thread that are Australian and Canadian. Circle of Moms is NOT an exclusively American website. And having rights (including the right to follow a religion of one's choice) is not an exclusively American privilege.

I'm not American but I feel I have just as much "right" to state my own opinions on here. I do emphasise though that they are only opinions, even those dearly held beliefs in my Christian religious faith are matters that I know are not shared universally by others. So my mention of my religion and my God on this particular section of Circle of Moms (which is a secular Forum) is always qualified by an explanation from me. I'm not so arrogant to assume that everyone believes the same creed as me or is hoping to be led to the same religious community as me.

@Nanci this thread asks the question why some people get upset when speaking about God. It's not a debate on whether or not God exists - I'm a Christian but didn't come on here to convert non-Christians.

Jenni - posted on 06/01/2012

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Oh my goodness Johnny, that story made my eyes well up. What a wonderful and inspiring woman.

Johnny - posted on 06/01/2012

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Angela, thanks for your contributions. Your commitment to your faith and your ability to witness without offense reminds me of the people I used to work with. I spent three years as a welfare advocate at a United Church and, of course, was one of the only people there who was not an active Christian. In my time there I saw people demonstrate their faith through caring and actions to help others and their own personal faith journeys. I never once was questioned about my beliefs or their validity to me, and I certainly never felt any urge to question others. It was clear from their behaviour and actions exactly what their faith meant to them, and they passed on that gift to others in ways that truly touched the soul (even of this skeptical atheist) and for some, encouraged their own spiritual and personal transformations.

We worked with a large population of people who were homeless, many of whom had significant substance abuse difficulties. As a result of being homeless in a wet climate, having addiction related health problems, and poor footwear, a great many of our clients had serious problems with their feet. One of my co-workers started a program where she washed their feet, treated their sores, and provided them with clean dry socks. She spent at least an hour every morning washing these stinking, rotting feet by hand. She didn't preach the word directly or warn people about the impending doom to their eternal souls, she showed them love and they knew that for her it came from her faith. Her inspiration was known and obvious, and people could see what beauty came from her belief. She had no ulterior motive accept to share the love she felt from God with others, not to make them believe exactly what she did, but to give them a glimpse into a possible source of love and joy for their own lives.

They didn't preach about people's sins, they didn't offer judgment on how others lived or believed, they just followed their own path. I never heard from any of those people I worked with about how they were "prosecuted for their beliefs" or criticized for mentioning God. They lived their faith which was a witness stronger than all the words of the bible.

Nanci - posted on 06/01/2012

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Yes but there is no evidence or book that states that he actually existed there aren't people stating that they saw him perform miracles.

Medic - posted on 06/01/2012

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Angela- I have to agree with the others. The way you get your point across is amazing and allows for open discussion. I think that you show amazing grace when talking about a subject that to so many people is very black and white when there is a huge grey area. I do enjoy reading your posts even though I do not feel the same.

Geanine - posted on 06/01/2012

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I think that I have a right as an a
American to talk about what I believe in when I am referring to what I'm going through in life. People always criticize if you just say the word god . It's unfair. The bible says that we will be persecuted for our beliefs .

Jenni - posted on 06/01/2012

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Angela, I hope you didn't think from my last sentence that I was implying you were actively trying to convert. ;)



I just meant being a passive witness or advocate for your faith by sharing what you believe respectfully and living/leading by good example. And even though you may not agree with some of us, you still acknowledge what we believe (or disbelieve) with understanding and acceptance. You seem like a very empathetic person.

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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And Angela, I do agree with you. Faith IS incredibly personal. And there are some people who are very faithful, to the point where their faith colours and influences every single waking moment of their lives. It is as much a part of them as their very skin. So I can totally sympathize and understand why they would be upset and shocked by others saying, "No. I don't agree. I think you're totally off-base on this." To a devout Christian, for me to say that I think there is no God is just...crazy! Because to the believer, God is the truth. And it is a bit of a mind-twist for many of them to try to even begin to understand that for many of us, it is NOT the truth.

So I can sympathize. I really can. But my sympathy only goes so far, if those people start becoming condescending and saying how I will someday see the truth, and that they only hope I do before it's too late, etc. etc. It very well may be that they're being sincere, and that they really DO hope that I see the "truth", and that they really ARE concerned for my immortal soul. But...we have to realize that we are ALL adults here. And we are all responsible for our own choices and beliefs. And if I do not believe, then I really need for people to understand that this is not due to ignorance or hatred or lack of a good sales pitch...it is because I just do NOT believe. A lot of us don't. And we're happy with that.

Krista - posted on 06/01/2012

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I echo what Jenni said. I love your contributions -- they're so thoughtful and eloquent and respectful. You really have a way of soothing troubled waters.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 06/01/2012

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Angela thanks

Anna- depends on whom you were asking for civility and when. Because if you call someone sad and awful simply because they don't wish to be demonized for not following the TRUE FAITH then expect civility you may as well come on here and try to convince others their shit doesn't stink.

Ok for the believers who believe that all of us non believers need to be saved or what not I have a real life scenerio for you all:

There are these two men- dads. Both are also step dads. One is an Atheist and the other is a born again Christian or what have you. The Atheist dad/step dad treats his step daughter as his own daughter and plays with both of them. He even contacted his step daughter when they were living across the country from each other and let his step daughter call him whenever she wanted. The other dad (who is the Atheist dad's step daughter's father) only calls his daughter twice a year and talks to her for 10 minutes. However he did adopt his step daughter and skipped visits with his daughter to have a birthday party for the step daughter.

Which one of these dads is showing more 'Christian vaules'? The Christian dad or the Atheist dad?

Angela - posted on 06/01/2012

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Thanks Jenni =^;^= I feel perhaps that some people (Christians?) on this thread (and maybe elsewhere?) may have thought that this was an opportunity to bear witness to the “non-believers”. But the opening post merely asks the question why some people get upset when speaking about God! I think many people who have posted on here have said exactly why they get upset and the OP herself may be missing that point!

Christians have a “responsibility” (if that’s not too strong a word) to find new disciples by making our faith attractive and irresistible to others. Until we have a suitable and reliable formula that’s attractive and irresistible, it’s probably better to refrain from trying to recruit new disciples! And the world at large will always judge us by our actions rather than our verbal preaching!

I feel that everyone has some kind of belief and/or value system that is important to them. It may not necessarily be a religious belief – perhaps they’re passionate about animal rights, FairTrade, ecology or healthy eating. Maybe they’re into solitary meditation and philosophy. All of these things to some people (as with religions of various origins and theories) are extremely precious and an individual’s own choice. For anyone to throw cold water on their choice of value system and disrespect it is painful and shocking.

However, no-one (that I can see) has disrespected anyone’s religion or value system on here. They have only stated that they do not PERSONALLY follow the same value system and said precisely why. No-one’s said “I don’t believe in YOUR religion, it’s a foolish belief system and you’re a fool for following it!” I feel everyone’s been quite respectful!

No-one has demanded “proof” for anyone else’s beliefs – yet some have furnished their posts with Bible quotes and/or weblinks that essentially won’t be seen as proof in any case!

IF the OP looks at the whole thread carefully, she’ll see exactly why “some people get upset when speaking about God”.

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