The ‘God’ post
I don’t believe in any God. It’s maybe for the best, I don’t think we would get on very well.
I did believe when I was young. I was brought up a Christian and religion was a significant aspect of family life. I went to church every week and I can still remember the weekend I decided to ‘give myself to God’. I was maybe 11 or 12 years old and I had no reason to doubt what I had been told at home, at school and at church by adults I trusted.
As I reached my teenage years I was less influenced by my family, more influenced by my peers, went to church less frequently and my education encouraged more free thinking.
Whatever the reason, I grew so distant from God that I could no longer see him.
I found science and facts more persuasive than blind faith. Put something on a bit of paper with an equation or formula and I will study it. If the facts are correct then I will believe it. There it is, right in front of me. Something that religion could not offer.
Although I don’t have any faith in God, I do believe that the bible teaches us many valuable lessons. I believe in the principles and the fundamental ethics. The bible is a great guide to follow however I don’t need to believe in a God to learn from it. I don’t need a God to understand right from wrong. I don’t need a God to appreciate the gift of life. I just don’t need a God to be a good person.
That is good enough for me but I can understand why so many turn to religion.
A God who will ALWAYS love you, even when you feel nobody else does. The promise of eternal life in heaven regardless of your actions. Show genuine remorse, ask for God’s forgiveness and you’re back in the queue to enter heaven. WHAT A GREAT IDEA!
Of course whenever there is a carrot there is a stick. Ignore God and live a life without faith and you will be condemned to hell. Spend eternity in suffering. A good threat to keep you in line.
Okay, I am simplifying somewhat but I do get the appeal of Christianity and why it attracts so many. Unconditional love and spending eternity in heaven with your loved ones. That’s some payoff, it sounds perfect. I just wish I could believe it was the truth.
I’m not suggesting that following God is an easy undertaking. I know many, including family members, who struggle against temptation and can find themselves questioning their faith. It may be appealing but it is not without its challenges.
Throughout my time being in and out of hospital I have met many Christians who still have faith in God. I respect their conviction, to still love their God after being dealt such punishing blows. It is beyond me. These good people struggle through unimaginable difficulty while the filth of humanity can enjoy charmed lives. If God does exist then he does not believe in justice and rectitude.
To be completely honest, the biggest barrier separating me from God is that I would not be able to forgive. If I was to be convinced, without doubt, that God does exist I could not find any love. Not for a God that I see as cruel and unjust.
I am a good person. I have my flaws but don’t we all? Surely God would understand that. Surely I should be allowed to live with some semblance of normality, without so much pain and suffering.
I cannot accept that my circumstances came to pass under the watch of a loving God. Worse case scenario would be that God planned my accident. Best case scenario would be that He watched on and allowed it to happen. Either way, I don’t want a relationship with that God.
I know the argument. ‘God gave us free choice’. I understand that. If I decided to commit murder then God gave me that choice. I would pay the price in this life and the next.
I only jumped into a swimming pool.
My neck is broken, I’m paralysed from the head down, I am on a ventilator, my family’s lives have been turned upside down and I suffer in pain every day.
Yes, I probably am bitter but why would a fair and loving God allow that to happen? I didn’t choose to break my neck, I chose to jump in a swimming pool. It seems that God has punished me for some unknown reason. Whatever my sin, the consequences are clearly out of proportion. Or maybe there is no God and life is just a game of chance.
The question ‘why do bad things happen to good people?’ will never be answered. I have certainly never came across a convincing explanation. A few have tried but fell wide of the mark. Quoting scripture is not quoting fact. Having faith is not having facts. Without factual evidence I just can’t believe. It seems we have reached a dead end.
I think an answer to that that would be the first step of a journey to move closer to God. Maybe someday.
I apologise if any offence has been caused. I am not belittling anybody’s personal faith. Far from it, I envy the conviction. My lack of faith is not a criticism aimed at those who do have faith.