In case you didn’t know, I lurv me some Pinterest. Here’s my wall.
One of the more interesting things I’ve found in the land of pins was on Dan Kimball’s wall called “Things for Christians To Think About.”
These made me think and laugh.
Source: Uploaded by user via Dan on Pinterest
Funny! What that makes me think of is a lovely young lady that converses with me about religion in my blog comments. I believe and she…doesn’t, but maybe, but not really, she’s really not sure, except she definitely doesn’t believe. Basically, she has a contradiction for everything I believe, and vice versa. The thing is, we both can hear what the other is saying, understand it and even acknowledge that in some way it makes sense. You know, for what it is. And yet I can’t not believe and she can’t quite believe.
I owe her a response right now about the immortality of our actions. She says that once we die it won’t matter to us if our legacy of goodness (or badness) lives on, since we’ll be just gone – we won’t exist to care. Obviously I don’t see it that way, but I’m debating on whether or not to rehash a conversation we’ve had in three or four different ways already or just let it go. My energy level wants to let it go, but my heart thinks maybe she needs to hear what I believe one more time, haha!
I think in conversations like this, it’s vital to listen to the prompting of the Holy Spirit. Some people are so hardened to the truth, that continuing a conversation with them will only serve to push them further and further from it. We can pray and ask God to give us the words or even to close a door so that something like this doesn’t do more harm than good. Sometimes it may even be saying, we need to agree to disagree right now.
I agree. With this particular girl I feel prompted to keep the dialogue going, even if we’re covering ground we’ve been over before. She’s very receptive and open to what I have to say, even as we disagree. With my sister, I wouldn’t push at all. With her I’m just trying to be quietly honest and open about what I believe. You’re absolutely right, if I pushed, she’d simply fall back onto “I don’t believe” and hold that position with an iron will. Any forceful attempts to open her up would surely close her up tight.
It can be a struggle for me to do what the Holy Spirit prompts me to do in terms of reaching out or being completely open. Generally, my own survival instincts are to keep my mouth shut, mostly from a fear that I don’t really know what I’m talking about (seeing as how I don’t, that always feels like a good option for me). I also have a real fear of doing more harm than good, as you say. I’m much more open here and on my blog, because I feel mostly safe – I guess I feel safe enough to be wrong or change my mind or basically make a fool out of myself in these spaces.
Clay, an atheist found my blog a few weeks ago and began to challenge me that Christianity isn’t rational. I agreed with them that based on their definition of rational, it isn’t. We believe in something we cannot see. But they don’t like to hear that at its root, they do the same thing. They like to throw out that they base their beliefs on proof. I asked them to prove the Big Bang. Nothing. They just wanted to equate my belief in God to pixies
Yes. A little over-simplified in the definition, but basically true. Sometimes I find myself a little awkward when discussing Christianity w/ someone who doesn’t believe.
I’ve had some very interesting conversations w/ an atheist coworker and we both make each other think. Which is a good thing.
Being rasied in a Christian home, it is hard for me to submit to the fact that Christianity does sound a bit “out there” to some. But, in recent years I’ve forced myself to try to think about things from another perspective. I think it’s really important for us to be able to articulate our faith in non-Christianese. But, that’s another subject for another time.
With the example above, what I would say, is that no matter how ridiculous it sounds, we can’t deny the very human need and desire for something more. God says He has set eternity in the hearts of men. Even those who deny God or eternity exists or that it doesn’t matter, struggle with it in some way. Maybe they’ve silenced that part of their heart/mind/soul for such a long time that it doesn’t nag at them so much anymore. To me, that is the great equalizer-the desire for purpose. Atheists don’t have a purpose or a hope. I have a hope in Christ that says I will live eternally with Him, that there is purpose in this life, and that yes, some things absolutely do not make sense.
I was raised by Christians who didn’t talk about it, much less teach me about it. But I could feel God calling me for years and years. I knew before I fully believed. I don’t know that I articulate my faith well at all. It’s what I believe, it’s what I feel and that can be hard to explain. I can site examples of prayers answered, of times when God spoke to me, of an apparition and a less pleasant interaction. But I can’t prove a darn thing. I think the only thing I can really do is share what I believe.
“God says He has set eternity in the hearts of men. Even those who deny God or eternity exists or that it doesn’t matter, struggle with it in some way.” This makes me think of Clay’s book, Undead. If you haven’t read it, you should My sister doesn’t believe, and she feels eternity as a gaping hole. She fears death and struggles with the idea that there’s nothing after that. It bothers her so, so much. And yet she doesn’t open up to even considering God. It seems to me that she won’t – willfully, purposefully she won’t believe. I don’t want to die, but I don’t fear it. I feel eternity as something full, as opposed to empty.
Good discussion all. It is good to consider a variety of perspectives and I try to avoid insider language of faith even though it’s often difficult to avoid slipping back into those familiar words and phrases. But as for how to explain it better, I figured I would take a crack, at least on one front. Check out my new post The Arrogant Jesus I Follow http://claywrites.com/arrogant-jesus/
I believe we are in the matrix.