I'm considering leaving Christianity

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_cora_
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03 Jan 2022, 1:00 pm

I'm sorry if I should have posted this in religion/politics instead.
I seriously need some guidance, but I can't talk to my parents about this. I used to believe in God and found it comforting. But since I was tiny, I started to realize something. Everyone else talked about knowing that God was there for them. But I never felt such a connection. My mom used to tell me that God loved everyone, which I liked, because to be completely honest my parents rarely expressed actual love for me. But recently, both of my parents have adopted this mindset that God only chooses certain people to save, and suddenly it all made sense to me.
The reason why I never felt a connection was because I wasn't one of the people he decided to save. Whenever I prayed and read the Bible and felt nothing it was because I wasn't chosen.
So if he doesn't love me, then what's the point in trying?
I know I'm probably too young to be making decisions like this, but I know deep down that I'm not loved and that I shouldn't stay.
What should I do? Am I ridiculous for thinking this?



theprisoner
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03 Jan 2022, 1:02 pm

I'm sorry to inform you, but it sounds like you're the victim of socio-cultural thought pattern conditioning (a.k.a brainwashing.) You might want to look into that.


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_cora_
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03 Jan 2022, 1:17 pm

theprisoner wrote:
I'm sorry to inform you, but it sounds like you're the victim of socio-cultural thought pattern conditioning (a.k.a brainwashing.) You might want to look into that.

I can't tell if you're being sarcastic or not. I don't think this is serious enough to be considered brainwashing.



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03 Jan 2022, 1:19 pm

You're young and innocent. I don't mean to be condescending but you're not really aware of how the world works. I know I wasn't at your age.


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_cora_
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03 Jan 2022, 1:54 pm

theprisoner wrote:
You're young and innocent. I don't mean to be condescending but you're not really aware of how the world works. I know I wasn't at your age.

Thanks, I came here for encouragement because I can't talk to anyone about it IRL, but apparently I'm just too innocent and don't understand so I have to deal with it until I turn 18 and magically learn everything about the world.



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03 Jan 2022, 1:56 pm

If you are comfortable answering this question, where are you in the US?


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03 Jan 2022, 2:06 pm

I actually think you're old enough to make a decision on this. I realized I wasn't a Christian or believed in God at 11 y.o. and my feelings haven't changed much since then.

I also think that if you don't believe you are getting anything out of Christianity that it's fine to consider leaving it. I actually would encourage you, though, to maybe try to expand your knowledge of it beyond what your parents have taught you, since it sounds like you still do believe in God, just that you possibly don't feel like you fit your parents personal understanding of Christianity and of being accepted by him.

It seems like to me that people often have different opinions about God, his love for people, etc., so maybe if you talked to more Christians and/or looked up some different resources about the things that confuse/worry you, you could find an explanation that makes more sense to you + makes you feel more validated as a Christian.


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03 Jan 2022, 2:46 pm

Cora, you've got to honor the person standing in front of the mirror every day. you are the only one whose opinions and beliefs should matter to you, not your friends or even parent, especially your parents. Kahlil Gibran, in The Prophet, said (using metaphor) "... children live in the house of tomorrow, and you (as parents) can never enter this house, not even for a visit."



enz
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03 Jan 2022, 2:59 pm

I’d say look for intellectual Christian books not “keep the faith books” and also atheist books

My friend is down that path I might be able to give you some links

Also that’s not good being so blunt when someone posts in the haven



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03 Jan 2022, 3:52 pm

 ! Cornflake wrote:
A reminder - posts made to The Haven are not an implicit invitation for debate.

Several posts here have been removed because they completely ignored the OP and derailed her thread into a discussion about religion.

Please become better acquainted with the rules applying to this forum:
viewtopic.php?t=297515


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03 Jan 2022, 4:59 pm

_cora_ wrote:
But recently, both of my parents have adopted this mindset that God only chooses certain people to save


Actually there are two schools of thought: Calvinism and Armenianism. Calvinists believe God chooses whom to save. Arminians believe people choose whether they want to be saved. I personally agree with Arminians because thats the only way in which it is fair.

As far as why you weren't feeling a connection with God, its because its a hard work. Jesus said in Matt 7:13 that "difficult is the way that leads to life and few will find it". But, upon hard enough work, you can still find it. God just wants you to work hard. Kind of like your teachers who give a really hard test. You can still pass if you study hard. But you have to study hard first.

Even if you talk to Calvinists, they would never judge person's election based on their current experience. They would say that God chooses who would be saved at the end, but He allows His chosen ones to struggle before they are saved. So ultimately both sides would agree that the lack of current spiritual experience doesn't preclude you from being saved later. The difference is whether God predestined your future or whether your future is your choice. But in either case you don't know your future only God does.

The other thing that both sides would agree is "seek and you shall find" because its in the Bible. Arminians would say that "if you are seeking its you making a good choice" while Calvinists would say "if you are seeking its because God made you do it". But, regardless, the act of seekign is a good sign. So I encourage you to go and seek.

By the way the argument whether its your choice or Gods choice applies not only to this but to any other choice you make. If you choose to work hard on a homework to get good grade, then some people would say it was your choice while others would say you were predestined you to work hard on a homework. But that doesn't stop you from working hard. Because ultimately everyone agrees if you work hard you get a good grade. What is behind you working hard (your choice or predestination) is the realm of philosophy. But you are still working hard on your homework regardless of how you answer that "philosophical" question. You should approach seeking God the same way.



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03 Jan 2022, 5:12 pm

_cora_ wrote:
I'm sorry if I should have posted this in religion/politics instead.
I seriously need some guidance, but I can't talk to my parents about this. I used to believe in God and found it comforting. But since I was tiny, I started to realize something. Everyone else talked about knowing that God was there for them. But I never felt such a connection. My mom used to tell me that God loved everyone, which I liked, because to be completely honest my parents rarely expressed actual love for me. But recently, both of my parents have adopted this mindset that God only chooses certain people to save, and suddenly it all made sense to me.
The reason why I never felt a connection was because I wasn't one of the people he decided to save. Whenever I prayed and read the Bible and felt nothing it was because I wasn't chosen.
So if he doesn't love me, then what's the point in trying?
I know I'm probably too young to be making decisions like this, but I know deep down that I'm not loved and that I shouldn't stay.
What should I do? Am I ridiculous for thinking this?
Since you ask for advice, I will give you mine.

You have two basic choices: To maintain the façade of acceptance for a religion in which you no longer believe, or to abandon any ties with that religion.

I offer a third choice: Find a group of "Burned-Again" Christians who feel as you do, and who want to learn for themselves how they stand with G^D instead of merely following someone else's traditions, doctrines, and beliefs.  This may involve a lot of time and effort on your part, but it may be worth gaining the peace of mind.

If you are determined to leave Christianity, then I wish you well.  Remember you can always come back.



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03 Jan 2022, 5:25 pm

Fnord wrote:
I offer a third choice: Find a group of "Burned-Again" Christians who feel as you do, and who want to learn for themselves how they stand with G^D instead of merely following someone else's traditions, doctrines, and beliefs. 


I have another advice. If your parents permit you to go to a different church than them, find the one that holds Arminian view. An easy rule of thumb is that Methodists are Arminians, Presbiterians are Calvinists and Baptists are in between. So I suggest go to the Methodist church.

Of course I am not so sure your parents would permit you to do it. So that is a hard part. Maybe find some friends who are Methodists and tell your parents you want to go with your friends or something?

But yeah, I think that finding a support circle from people who hold Arminian doctrine is the single best thing you can do for your faith. Becuse it seems like Calvinism (of your parents) is what discouraged you. So you need a good doze of Arminianism to "undo" it.



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03 Jan 2022, 6:04 pm

auntblabby wrote:
Cora, you've got to honor the person standing in front of the mirror every day. you are the only one whose opinions and beliefs should matter to you, not your friends or even parent, especially your parents. Kahlil Gibran, in The Prophet, said (using metaphor) "... children live in the house of tomorrow, and you (as parents) can never enter this house, not even for a visit."


This. Beautiful answer, blabbs. ^



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03 Jan 2022, 6:24 pm

Who told you you are not “chosen”?



_cora_
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03 Jan 2022, 7:21 pm

kraftiekortie wrote:
Who told you you are not “chosen”?

No one directly, I've just always known this about myself and it only became apparent recently when my parents changed. They get more and more extreme politically and religiously the longer they stay in this house and don't go outside.