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Questions on God and our Reactions to Him/Her/It/They
September 21, 2002
3:04 pm
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gingerleigh
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Maybe someone can help explain some human reactions to me. Why is it that when people talk about hard times and say "I couldn't have gotten through it without my lord and savior Jesus Christ" that there's this eyeroll reaction that just sweeps through the crowd? Even in myself, I feel it when someone starts to talk about religion and giving oneself completely to God, I just feel really creepy in my stomach? I try to squelch it and be respectful on the inside too just like I am on the outside, but it feels in-genuine. Feelings shouldn't be squelched, they should be dealt with, so here's my first attempt at dealing with this one.

Is it arrogance? Narcissism in its purest form? Pure shame and frustration and flat out disbelief that I am not enough and I can't control my own life and am that powerless and have to turn it over to some nameless faceless powerful God I've never seen?

Is it jealousy? That a segment of the population has found peace in religion that I do not share, so to deal with my jealousy I have to instead pooh pooh the sentiment and think "Oh brother, here we go again" just like we would with a misguided love-sick teen?

I got a chain letter a while back about Jesus and God, and it was a nice letter, and it said to forward it on, but that it bet that most people wouldn't. We are comfortable forwarding a dirty joke to everyone we know, but won't spread words of peace, love and heavenly salvation to those we love most. That got me thinking.

I don't have any direct evidence that a higher power exists in this universe, other than some falls of fortune that I can't explain any other way, and some strange feelings at very hard times in my life that I was never really completely alone, that someone or something was watching out for me. That's something I never had growing up. One of the codependency books talks about how parents can oftentimes block the child from the higher power because they in fact become the child's higher power. I'm sure that happened in my case. I used to go to baptist church with the neighborhood kids down the street, and I absolutely LOVED it. Went until I was about 7 years old. My parents would just sort of smile and say that's nice dear when I would talk about the bible stories I had learned. And then my mom stepped in at that point and told me I had to go to my first holy communion and thus started my catechism classes during the week. But I never bought into any of that catholic stuff because it just seemed so boring and awful, especially next to the Baptist bible stories that talked about Noah and the Ark, the exodus from Egypt, the garden of Eden... the whole experience was confusing and never explained, and what little child-like faith I had evaporated as I grew older.

The movie Dogma has a great line in it. Faith is like a glass. When you're little, the glass is little, and it only takes a little water to fill it up. When you get bigger, the glass gets bigger too, and you need more water to fill it. As I grew up, no more water went into my glass, and what was there evaporated.

So I'm not sure why I have this "oh WHATEVER" internal response to religion or people talking about their higher power. It's not offensive to me, and it doesn't hurt me exactly, but I am bewildered by my response.

I think that maybe I just don't understand.

Anyone else have thoughts on this that they would like to share? And I do mean any thoughts. If you'd like to tell me that I just haven't opened my heart enough, that's a great start. Or if you'd like to express your reactions to religion, that's great too. Or if you want to theorize as to why Americans in particular have this huge eyeroll reaction to religion and to God, I would love to hear the theory.

September 21, 2002
7:03 pm
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Ladeska
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I think alot of the eyeroll thing comes from "abounding hypocrisy". And that is in every religion actually. People are human. But, with Christianity it seems people use it for a cover because it appeals to the narcissist or the psychopath for many reasons. Christians can become "born again" and then you just have to do the "forgiving" thing, and if you "do good works" and "learn your bible verses" you can go right up the ladder and be a "religious leader and good person in the community". Oops, forgot the tithe thing and regular attendance at all the functions. There are alot of facets to what many people "think is" Christianity that can be easily mocked by people who just want to deceive people and have a good cover.

People see this and they detest it and so they should. They then mistake "these people" for being real Christians and we all get a bad name. I understand all that - really well and you'd see quite a bit of eyeroling from me personally. Because I detest - wolves - with a passion and they don't like me one bit either. But they came in all shapes, forms and packages. And Christianity, by no means, corners the market. There are just those within our ranks that do the ten-point marketing plan and end up looking like arrogant car salesmen that you'd like to run over with your car than listen to one word of what they say. I'm sure you have known - some of these people....and then of course - they are the very ones who are robbing people blind, keeping track of all the souls "they save" (as if they could...) and wear their holiness alot like the Pharisees did - right on their sleeve for all to see and spit judgement and how you are going to hell in a hand basket - while completely ignoring their many dark characteristics and you sit there and go - you blind or what?

But, okay fine - there are "those people" out there, but that's the showy front line. The charlatan - look-alike-pretending-to-be's and that's what people see the most upon first look and go - talk to the hand because the face ain't listening. But, if you look again and really seek for "the few" (as it always is) that are very busy "being" and "doing"....you begin to see another picture altogether. I am amazed at the people who see the front line and yet - spend no time at all looking behind the wall of deception. And I've got news for everyone. The wall of deception is in all religions. Is quite the jolly good show and front.

As in anything that is truly spiritual - you don't wear it on your sleeve. You incorporate it into your life and it's very personal. You don't beat someone else up because they don't believe as you do and you don't dump what you know if someone else drops the ball. Trouble is - alot of us - don't do our own personal journey thing. We get caught up in the herd and blow with whatever wind. Our souls get hungrier and hungrier because we still eat oatmeal that was for babies - but now we are adults.

We expect people and organizations and groups to feed that hole inside us and that won't be happening. We have to do our own journey. The very people that I admire the most - are the ones who's lives are full of what they believe - in their actions and you read what they believe - by the way they move through life. They are humble, always seeking and have an immense amount of integrity and never close the door to knowledge and above all else - they respect their fellow man and never take the stance of being higher or better or over them in any way whatsoever.

Also when people are new in anything, they tend to be like babies - they act immature, they spout stuff they know nothing about, the do the herd thing, Simon says and Run Lola Run routine and intelligent people - are going to roll their eyes. It just happens. Many of these people just want to "belong to something" and they seek out religious groups. But, as you get older you realize - people have to start out somewhere and the ones that are genuine will cut their own path and grow deeply in their spiritual walk and leave childish ways behind...and the other ones will blow away with the first strong wind.

Some that call themeselves Christians are notorious for being arrogant in their faith and much has been done in the name of God and the Christian faith that God had nothing whatsoever to do with. History is full of bloodletting - all in the name of God. When in all reality it was in the name of man - getting what he wants, any way he can.

When we get to the crossroad where we stand and ask the questions you are asking - is quite the precious time because - all things become new.....and you decide here and now to make what you believe - about "you" and no one else.

Also in our society as of late - it's become quite the marketplace and rummage sale for religion. Just go to the flea market and pick up one! Try this, try that, don't do this, don't do that. At some point, a person has to think for themselves and realize that - while man searches for God - God also searches for man...and many times we say we don't know the road there...but alas - we do. The calling card was left in us by our maker and it was written in code that each of us understands.

September 22, 2002
12:09 am
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Anonymous
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In my religion, HE is there for anyone who wants him and he touches the person, not the other way around. I do not know alot, i stand by my bible that tells me what is good and what to avoid-it is my roadmap for happiness. I do not seek man or his opinions, and i listen to my heart above all, I listen to my GOD and what HE tells me, at least i do my best!!!

Kimberly Ann

September 22, 2002
2:16 pm
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eve
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Hallo Ginger,

good question, that's something that I've noticed, too. And I'm certainly one of the eyball rolling people.

One reason for this is that I often find that people say one thing, but their body posture and their face tell a different story. I think this is the same problem that Ladeska described above.

The other reason is not quite as clear. I think that for me spirituality is something that is really intimate and goes to the core of the soul. And a something as intimate as that gets spoiled when you drag it into the public and wave it around for everybody to see and be impressed. But then - I'm a pretty private person. I always find that the public part of religion is to a huge part about ethics, morale, wisdom of how to lead a good, fulfilling life and further others. I don't mind discussing that openly.

September 22, 2002
11:06 pm
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gingerleigh
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So okay, religion, spirituality, seems to be two parts... the code of ethics you live by and move through society with, and also this "higher power", through which we get in touch with this way of living. KimberlyAnn, what I hear you saying is that you don't seek out God, He seeks you out? I'm at a loss, because either I'm one of those humans God doesn't really care to talk to or I'm just not listening. Why can't I hear anything? When I still my thoughts and listen, really I think I'm listening, I don't hear anything, I just hear... silence.

I feel like I'm standing in front of one of those pictures with the hidden hologram inside it, with all these people standing around me shouting "There it is! I see it!" and I don't see a bloody thing. And part of me is wondering if there is really anything there at all, and people are just saying they see something because everyone else is saying it.

I look around me, and I cannot deny the existence of a higher power. Scientific theories abound to explain everything, and I follow them, but in my heart I know that there must be something more to it than evolution, survivial of the fittest, and the big bang. But to be touched individually, personally, by this higher power? No, I don't feel that, and never have. And it's quite lonely. I feel like there's a big party down the street that everyone was invited to... but me.

I don't mean to sound pitiful or like I'm feeling sorry for myself. I just don't know why I'm not getting it, what I'm not seeing. If I look hard enough, shouldn't I see it? (btw, I did finally manage to cross my eyes enough to see the hologram in those damn pictures...)

September 23, 2002
1:38 am
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Ladeska
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Few people ask honest questions. Therefore, they only get false answers. Others invent answers to mold to their questions asked for purposes of posturing and seem to be found content in their own deception....or so it seems.

What is illusive to us and seems to take flight, always seemingly playing games with us - is most often the fleeting contentment within other's answers that we have tried to make our own, while all the time wearing slippers that only bring callouses because of their ill fit.

The beginning of seeking doesn't always bring answers in the way of "cell phone quickness" or "microwave ready" and thus we tire of the journey much too prematurely...

I think one of the things that we want more than anything, probably our most primal, inmost need is "to be known".....to know that while on this planet - someone knew us well, heard our spirit sing, our heart cry out, and wouldn't try to define it as much as "just hold it" for what it is.

And yet, many hold us....many express their undying love to us and yet it doesn't satisfy...we hunger for something else. We become distrustful of our fellowman with their pockets full of potions for every ill and always with "great price" and a dubious list of things you must do to acquire it and hopefully be indebted enough to "the way" that one will follow blindly forever, while the ones in robes profit greatly from our obedience and piety.

Some....are very satisfied with such a game, and they hide very well, content even - within it's fabric. Others, like yourself - don't find such comfort and their eyes begin to open as if to "see" for the very first time.

We offer ourselves to whatever that great power is and we look for it in the mighty roll of thunder...and it is not there. Then we demand that it be shown in the great display of lightning....and it is not there. We grow weary and faint of heart and listen intently, though somewhat impatient, for the message to be born upon the wind...and it is not there...we come to the end ourselves, to the end of all we know and we despair that where we looked we found nothing and surmise that either we are blind and deaf or either God is dead or just doesn't care.

The whisper that comes afterwards...isn't heard by anyone else, in fact, everyone else would think you quite mad...and so it often is when God speaks to a heart that has abandoned everything that it is -to touch all that ever was.

Faith - is scarcely defined well by any hand that has ever written about it. It is only defined by the human heart. We are not ever truly "known" by anyone here....only by that which made us. And I'm afraid no book, no formula, no scientist or philosopher or king or imagined religious ruler could quite comprehend what goes on there when God touches a heart and brings a spirit to life. I only know that if you truly seek Him....He will not keep you waiting for long. Just long enough that your heart can maintain enough "quiet" for the whisper to be heard. And for that - you do not need ears, or eyes or anything fashioned by the doctrines of man. You simply need the life force that was given you - to identify with the One who gave you that life. Through your spirit you have all you need to receive the truth from which you were fashioned.

September 23, 2002
6:42 am
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BeccaUK
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One of the reasons I find myself rolling my eyes comes from false faith...occasionally some people have a near death experience or something and all of a sudden they're best buddies with god...i hate that...people should either have believe or not. it's ok to get faith, but they shouldn't make it convinient to themselves and drop it when they are ok. thats not what it is about.

myself, i have my own little religion. it is personal to me and no one can take it away. i have no god, no ruler, but i am happy and it is based on being pure of heart and good. maybe it is never going to be recognised i don't care. it is something i trully believe in and it has been with me my whole life. it kind of involves aspects found in many other religions and alternative religions, but so what???

šŸ™‚

lots of love

Becca xxxxx

September 23, 2002
10:28 am
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beenthruthat
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gingerleigh~

Human reactions are to the person. Some people do use their faith as a 'crutch' or to manipulate others. Your past experiences have something to do with your personal reactions.

In my own case, it took some hard knocks in life to have me come to the realization that I could not control everything around me. It was in the hands of my God. In a lost and lonely time of my life, I found that God helped me. I truly do believe in Him. I was 40 when it dawned on me that the explanations in the Bible made sense to me. This is coming from someone with a BS in Biology - true science nut.

Your reactions (rolling eyeballs) indicates you don't buy it. On the other hand, you seem curious to know why you feel that way. It might be a good idea to review your feelings to see if you are more disbelieving or are curious what the appeal is.

That's how I started out. I asked my neighbor to escort me to church, since I had not been involved in religion since I was 15 years old. I told myself I was doing it because I did not want my daughter to grow up with no knowledge of religious values. About 3 weeks later I realized I needed God's guidance more than she did.

What I found is that, the inner core of my spirit was lacking. God has filled that hole in my life, allowing me to re-establish my integrity. I sent a little something to sosos that I read in a religious magazine - did you roll your eyes on that one? I didn't write it, but it reflected on one young woman's way to deal with a destructive, alcoholic father.

I don't push my values on anyone. Some people become evangelists and can turn you off by being so enthusiastic. One of my favorite speakers is a guy called Rick Amato, who is the chairman of AWANAs (a Christian co-ed scouts thing). He was a coke addict, drinking himself to death, out on the streets loser who almost killed himself with his addictions. He's a very powerful speaker and a little pushy. Makes a LOT of eyes roll. But if you are ready to change your life with God's help, he'll have you on your knees.

Hard to describe how my life has changed. It helped me maybe like the 12 step programs help some people. It allowed me to vent to a presence that REALLY knows me inside. Prayer for guidance, for tolerance, for patience, for rescue sometimes -- it keeps me from acting out inappropriately to what others do. My behavior is more steady.

I have a friend who is bi-polar who I would even say goes off the deep end with religion. She is very well controlled with medicine, but she has pictures of Jesus in her living room and passages of scripture on the refrigerator, in the bathroom, on little pieces of paper or on plaques all around the house. That seems very unhealthy to me, but it works for her. She definitely gets the eyeballs rolling!

Sorry to ramble. Just felt like digging a little deeper (for me or for you? I don't know.). Your honest feedback is appreciated.

šŸ™‚

September 23, 2002
10:54 am
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Ladeska
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Just thought about this the other day when I heard about something - I hear things like - let's say a whole community got wiped out by a tornado and there's this one person on the news who's house wasn't destroyed and they say...."It was by the Grace of God that my house was spared!" Now I'm over here scratching my head going, um okay - so how's that supposed to make the other 25 families feel who just lost everything they had??? That they were not as holy and blessed by God as you are??? Just amazes me. Hear that talk all the time and yes, you'll see my eyes roll because sometimes....I really "know" the people that are involved in whatever and okay - they didn't get hit as bad as anyone else but now they claim closeness with God about it??? And yet, I look at what I know about them and the man who just took the real beating was a prince of men compared to this creep! It would be funny if it wasn't so repulsive.

But, then I look at the people who were devastated by whatever storm in life and study those that I admire and see them quietly go about building what the need - back. You don't hear them cursing God because the storm came and yet if they end up later being the one spared - you don't hear them saying it was because of the grace of God either - because they know better.

We so often try and make God play by our rules - and He won't be stuffed into such a box. He won't be defined by the system of man. If you look closely at the story of Santa Claus for example - you'll see all too clearly how man - sketches God alot of times. Interesting story for children to learn.... Here you have a godlike figure who knows all - supposedly....and will reward you for being good and punish you for being bad, right? And yet the little boy down the street got nothing and you got everything and more and yet - God must not have seen what a brat you were and how good this little boy really was. Therefore God can be fooled and you can hide from Him and He is also not fair or loving because look how he punished the nice little boy down the road - the poor little boy who had a family that really loves him but they just don't have very much - is looked down on by God and yet - the bratty little kid with a family that has much and who aren't nice people at all - God shines down upon in favor.... And then you tell these kids at some point, or they learn on their own that the Santa Claus story was all a lie to begin with and just a big joke played on them..and then.......when you take them to church or try and teach them about God in any way - why would they believe you because - they already had a template laid down in their brain about that whole storyline and they won't be "had" twice. And so it is - when man tries to interpret who God is for man's own reasons.

September 23, 2002
11:21 am
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Cici
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I dunno. I grew up going to Catholic school - mass on Fridays and Sundays, stations of the cross every day during lent, cheating on my spelling homework in mass on Fridays. I was devout for a while, and had some strange religious experiences, being "filled with the holy spirit" as they say.

But I never thought God was really invested in ME, per se. From a very young age I envision God as a ball of light that had feelings and sensations and perceptions so different from my own that it was alien to me. I never really anthropomorphized God in any way. NEver saw GOd as an old man in white robes, or a loving mother, just a being that I couldn't comprehend. So I never had an special affinity with God, or said, "my life is in God's hands" - I always thought God was simply incomprehensible to me and couldn't have the same kind of thinking as a human being.

To me, that was obviously why God chose beings to be born through. But as I grew older I saw God in every great, holy person, from Mother Teresa to Ghandi to Buddha to Jesus, all of them had a divinity within them that had no cultural barriers.

I don't like Christianity because of the exclusivity. Believe in me or burn in hell/float in sensationless limbo. I mean jeez, that sound patriarchal not benevolent. I don't like the political structure of churches, the way I have to have this intermediary to commune with divinity, as if I'm not capable of the cognitive effort, as if I can't read the friggin' bible. I remember walking out ofmy in-law's church thinking, I have an entirely different interpretation of that bible verse than the preacher. Am I wrong, or is he? HAR har har har.

Ladeska is right on. SO many people think of God on their own terms, not God as GOd, without your own hang-ups and beliefs, and entity in and of itself that is beyond human comprehension because God is not human.

Buddhism is a comfort to me, instead. It puts the burden of achievement and realization on my shoulders. Every action I take I must be accountable for. I can't ever say, well God forgave me for my past misdeeds - because I don't believe that that really matters. The weight that lies on your soul is your responsibility. God didn't make me do drugs, nor can GOd absolve me of things I did while on drugs. My choice, my responsibility.

I can see, though, how other people would seek the comfort of believing that their past can be erased. It sounds nice. And the idea that some other being can be responsible for you rather than yourself - that sounds great, too - like having a benevolent, caring parent for the rest of your life.

But the whole bible thing, I had to memorize verses and the authors of all the different sections. Suddenly I read about dead sea scrolls, whole books of the bible burned by the patriarchy in ancient times - I see religion as, by and large, bound by the culture in which it developed. You can't say, well that was in the past - deeds done in the name of religion, particularly Islam and Christianity, makemy shiver, make my blood boil, make me nauseous.

All I see, in the bible, is the word of man as inspired by his image of God. Affected by the time in which it was written, and the culture to which it is bound. As a historical document, the bible is a very rich resource, but how can you take it out of the context in which is was written?

I read the bible cover to cover when I was in middle school. I tried to keep track of all the contradictions, but by the time I got a few chapters into the new testaments they were just too numerous to count. Ya know - reading the bible as a work of literature really made me disillusioned.

September 23, 2002
11:59 am
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Gingerleigh~

Just skimming through but here are some thoughts.

My mother was a good Southern Baptist. I was raised around the church and God. Now that I am grown up and on my own I believe more of a higher spirit, some power source out there directing us and guiding us.

I have had too many people, "bad" people that I've known. People that have done awful dreadful things that have now found God and expect all to be forgiven. I have a hard time with that one. I know a man that killed someone over a drugdeal gone bad, went to AA, found God, became a minister and is now preaching to his congregation. I can't say that I would won't a murderer preaching to my children. This puts a real sour taste in my mouth about religion. My kids go with their dad who is another that has decided that he is now forsaken because he has found God. There are too many that I know like this, they do wrong most of their lives, lie, cheat, steal and yet find God and become holyer than thou! Just rubs me the wrong way!!!

I can't stand either when someone says they were nothing until they found God. Isn't this co-dependency in it's largest form.....dependent on God to be happy with self?

This is the reason I guess, for my own eye roll.

September 23, 2002
12:13 pm
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Cici
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Good explanation, tracy!

September 23, 2002
12:54 pm
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Ladeska
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Tracylyn.........it's just another old trick in the books of "cons". It's over used actually, but hey - it works. People buy it, lock, stock and barrel. The first things most psychopaths do when they get out of prison, or before they get out is - become holy men. Then they have a cover and you in a catch-22 because after all - aren't you bound to forgive me for raping and torturing someone or for killing my best friend in a drug deal gone bad? I mean you don't have to really know anything about me and study me in order to really discern what's really up with me because - I'm just supposed to say all this stuff and you believe me because I got GOD on my side and have studied up in prison on how to convince you of that. So WHATZ UP? Aren't you gonna believe me or what?

Thing is - God never expects anyone to be - that stupid or gullible. Quite the opposite. He says to "test the spirits" and that's precisely - what he means. Alot of people profess to be people of God and yet - they really don't abide by what He says do - at all. They seem to miss certain parts of that instruction - all too conveniently.

There are some things that make your stomach turn and your eyes roll that - makes God quite sick to His stomach as well. Jesus drew quite the picture in the sand of all that....pretty much exposed these charaltans and con artists wherever they stood - in religious robes or not.

I knew of a man in the south, who used to be a night club entertainer and came to our little small town and started being an Evangelist of GOD!!! The guy could play piano like Jerry Lee Lewis, could play with his hands and his feet, was very good looking and could sing like Elvis and had the motion in the ocean thing going on as well - in front of the congregation and the beds of many of the women - including the organist who worshipped him in more ways than one. And yes, the man could spout scripture....why are we always so amazed by that one?

This man had about a thousand people flocking to his church on this little mountaintop. He had burnt the church so that he could rebuild it. The other retired pastor and the elders wouldn't let him outright take it over, so he burned it and built it back with his own money, which he got right back through the generous donations of "his people". Most of them giving past the point of it being good for them...

He was just doing an old con job and got caught at it eventually. He said - well, it was better than making a living working in a nightclub, was real easy pickings actually! And he was absolutely correct. But, there is something in human nature that absolutely abhors - owning up to the fact that we can be soooo charmed and conned. We hate owning that more than - what they do to us!

And I say from all this that - the people allowed themselves to be blinded. They professed something that they were NOT. They were following after a man.......not after God at all. And if they did read some things in the bible they would have realized the wolf in sheep's clothing before he ever got as far as he did. But they followed after the pied piper instead and he led them all right over the cliff.

September 23, 2002
1:52 pm
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tracylyn
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Ladeska~

Thanks for your words. I do understand the con....just burns my ass that people use it this way and then look down their noses at those that don't.

How about my second question. About being the largest form of codependency. I have a friend that was lost and didn't believe in himself at all, now he has found God and says he is nothing without him. I understand let go and let God but can't it be taken to a point where it becomes unhealthy?

September 23, 2002
3:29 pm
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Ladeska
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I agree - it becomes a crutch and therefore whatever move you make - God told you to, so you can't be wrong because you're living so "close" with Him, right? Is another way of absolving responsibility. Seen that one, too.

September 23, 2002
6:07 pm
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tracylyn
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Just an issue with me right now. My ex has decided that he has found God and goes to church and drags our kids whether they want to or not. He has done horrible things in his life. He would lie, cheat and steal from anyone he could just to get himself ahead in life.....his drive to be better or the best outweighed right from wrong. He now finds God and decides he is going to live a life designed in God's plan and looks down upon those that don't.

I have always tried to be honest and kind and would not harm someone for my own personal gain. I live a Christian life although I do not attend a church regularly. This does not mean I am wicked as he would presume I am.

It just gets under my skin that people can be sooo self righteous and holy when others know who they really are. I want to know who he is fooling other than himself.

Now people see him in church with his kids and think "what a wonderful dad." Uggggg, if they only knew!!!!

September 24, 2002
8:48 am
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Time usually tells if someone has reformed or not, who knows maybe he has or maybe he is putting on a show, but one thing is for sure, time will tell. It will be good for your children to go, it may comfort them while things are going on and may be a good source of comfort to them in these trying times for you all. My parents draged me too, but when i got there, i felt safer and happier cause others were around who were not fighting all the time, in a way it was a comfort for me. Today i do not attend, plan to someday before my child gets too much older, but yea sometimes we need a break from it too and why go if you rather not be there anyhow, really what would be the point? But i really think that children benefit from church, my daughter loves it when we do go. And it can help me feel better while maybe? Take care and GOD bless:)

Kimberly

September 24, 2002
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Ladeska
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Tracylyn....oh boy does this one bring back memories to me! I was married to two men (at separate times, of course!) who conned the entire church. Yes, I've been married three times in my life. What a wicked woman, huh? (smile) Ah yes....the life of the wayward... Well, let's just say because of my own issues growing up - for many years I was trying to resolve an old war with my father symbol - I picked the wrong men in order to fix a broken heart. That would about sum it up. The first one was for five years and was quite the pillar of the community. How could I go wrong, right? His family was nice, never argued, decent, church going, respected, they all had a good time together, he treated me well, I loved him....and then came the issues of telling them about my past abuse. But at this time - my father who had already shot himself in the head and yet lived - had "just become a Christian" and had woo'd everyone, well, almost everyone that is... The very one who didn't play his game and knew him better than anyone - didn't buy it. That would be me... I watched him very closely and there was no change in that man, only another con. The same goes with the woman who raised me, my stepmother, who also followed suit.

Then my husband thought it just fine for them to babysit our then infant daughter and stay all night with them - because "he seemed to be such a great guy!" I can truthfully tell you that that one statement sent me on my way and yes, we divorced. And to this day - he and his family still continue in that thought pattern - of my daughter should go see "her family" and love them and treat them with respect, blah, blah. Now these two parents of mine were Satan incarnate on earth, okay? They abused me in ways no child should be abused. And all of a sudden - they are just the nicest people on earth because - they found God. Well, they aren't much different now from the way they portrayed themselves back when they were abusing me. They were nice then, too - to everyone else.... and yet behind closed doors - monsters to each other and to me.

So, did I have a little bit of problem trying to fix and resolve the bad symbol in front of me and yet gain a man's love and yet wrestle with all the in's and out's of a psychopathic personality? Um - yea, you could say that! Not something you're equipped to do at such a young age. But I can truthfully say - over the years - I've learned a thing or two....

Then I married another man years later for one month because he turned on me one night and attacked me physically. That night I was gone and never came back. But, in the course of the time right before he did this and directly after - he was going to church and weaving his cover....and they all bought into it, even with me telling them different, especially the pastor. They used to go jogging every morning together. *How sweet* Can't tell you how much I wanted to gag and go off on the congregation because - here I was - in a state of turmoil and yet - they put him up on a pedestal because he could con them so WELL! Ah yes, the hysterical wayward disobedient little wife that I was....

One old saint, a woman blessed with heavy discernment came to my aid. In fact, the Sunday before he attacked me - I showed up at church, crying my eyes out, sitting in a pew alone, not knowing anyone in that church really, not in a close way at all - I'd had a really bad night with him and spent the night on the beach by myself. She walks over after service, brushes my hair out of my face and says - here, take this. It was her name, her address and her phone no. I said - why? I mean - who told you anything about me, I don't understand! She said - you don't have to understand, and God sent me to you. You will need this, and she folded her hand around my hand and said - take it and don't put it in your purse, pray and ask God where to put it and if you need a place to stay - call me. I looked at her like she was whacked. Shook my head like - okkaayyy.... and left. I got to my car, thought about what she said and put it in my glove compartment and drove home.

Thing was - that night on the beach - I really poured my heart out to God and said - I just can't do this, I made a horrible mistake, this man is such a con artist, is on cocaine, hid it from me, says he wants to get clean, pretends to be interested in God - but it's all a ploy and I know it - what do I do - how do I get out of this?? HELP ME!!!!!

But when she did this - it didn't register to me that this was God going before me....and answering me. I just didn't think of that, was too tired, too upset and on the verge of just caving in...

A week later - everything hit the fan one night. He said we were going to have a Halloween party at our house and invite all his druggie buddies over - who I could NOT stand and he knew it and I said - no....not in my home. He said - well, it's my home, too and I just stared at him. I said - you know what? You're right. It is and it's not my home anymore, is it? He says - well we can have it all, we can have this lifestyle and then we can have God, too and sneered at me this wicked look from hell and I said - No....I won't live like that and therefore, I'm leaving and I'm doing it right now and that's that.

I won't go into all the details of what happened but long story short he went into a RAGE bec. I was leaving, ended up throwing a heavy crystal wine goblet at my head, breaking it about 1/8th of an inch from my temple. I was bleeding, staggering and knew I had to get ahold of my daughter who was there on the other side of him screaming at him and beating him in the back. I tried to think about where my purse was and it was behind him on the sofa. I looked down and he had broken alot of things that night and broken glass was all on the floor bet. me and him and I was barefoot. I decided I had to get to my purse anyways and get my keys, get her and leave and thought - well, I just have to go through him - I took one step and stepped on my car keys that I hadn't noticed were there on the floor. I bent over, picked them up, grabbed her by the sleeve and pushed her toward the front door and said - GO to the car now!!! I ran, we got in and he was shouting he was going to get his .357 magnum to blow me away. I went to the hospital, saw a policeman, sent them over to get the gun and waited to file charges and held it over his head to get a quick divorce, pay for it and stay the hell out of my life or I would press assault and battery. He complied. I thought - what the heck am I going to do, I'm new in this state, just moved across country, I don't have hardly any money in the bank, don't know anyone very well and then I remembered this woman and that I put her piece of paper in my glove compartment and that my purse was still at home...I called her and she let us live with her for 6 months and was quite the little prayer warrior throughout the next few weeks. He tried and tried to find out where I was - but it is safe to say - I was in the shadow of El Shaddai and in the fold of His wing, even though it was dark sometimes - that was when I was the "closest" to Him. (smile) But, all this time and even after this - he was still going to church, acting like it was just a mistake, wailing in front of the church that he just - Wants his wife back, blah, blah. They are all looking at me like I'm a bad person, except for my friend, this woman...she knew exactly what she was looking at...

The pastor tried his dead level best to get us back together and I was still going to church. Wasn't going to let him run me off. But, it was getting really hard for me. One deacon there that I worked with - came to this woman's house for a prayer meeting and "tried" to put me in my place as a "christian wife" and I LET HIM HAVE IT!! with both barrels and said - you guys have let a wolf into your flock and you WILL pay the price off that. You won't listen to this woman and you won't listen to me. You won't value the people you have among you who have the gift of discernment, therefore your doors are wide open for the wiles of such a man or woman. Your lesson will be harsh and I am done with you.

Finally my soon to be ex - let his colors show through eventually and one by one - the people at the church started hanging their heads in shame around me because they saw - I was telling the truth all along but it was too late for me. I had had my fill of them. I sat and watched time after time while they ate him up and turned on me and I at some point I was "done" with them. I guess I wanted to see that come about and then - it was no place for me anymore.

The deacon finally moved back east, got another job and before he left - he apologized profusely and said - we just didn't know.... I said - that's not an excuse. You should make it your business to know and to test the spirits of people. If you don't - then you are wide open for anything to come you way and believe me when I say - it will come your way....

I later married another man for a year - who was of the same fiber, just a different spin of it. He was a leader in the church actually, a youth leader and oh how he could tug at my heart strings. He was a champion for abuse, ditto'd everything I said and thought, brought children from bad homes into church with him and really seemed to love them. I fell for all that of course. And when I married this man - I can't even begin to tell you the wickedness that went on as far as mindgames and deception. He at one point told my daughter to kill herself because she was the problem and the reason why he and I didn't get along.... Needless to say when I heard that one - I went ballistic on him!!!! I left so quick it made his head spin and the same thing happened - he hounded me, had the church behind him. I had to get a restraining order against him - he broke it, etc. All our friends thought I was the bad guy. I mean the woman's been married twice before - and she's older than him anyways - what a fallen one is she, right? Um, no - that wouldn't be correct and I knew that in my heart. I realized the mistakes I had made and why I made them and I knew God understood that as well. I had been bitten a long, long time ago by a certain kind of vampire....a psychopathic kind that was extremely good at what he did and I continually fought to end that war within myself - to subconsciously find a man similar - that I could win over, could help change, who might one day really love me. I sensed in all of these men - strains of what my father was. I just didn't understand the compulsive dance that I was doing until after this last marriage of one year. Then it just hit me and hit me hard. You might say - the poison began to be drained in me and the healing started as well.

It hit me how gullible people are to con artists, thus my reason for harping on it here all the time. Then again, I'm not so sure anymore that they are that stupid. I think there are more "like kind" out there that agree with what these people do and applaud their ability in their own dark hearts for their own dark, illicit reasons. That's a hard conclusion to come to and has taken me many years of fighting it - to now arrive there. But, I can come up with no other explanation and believe me when I say - I wanted to see something else.....

People like to get conned because they are of like character.

People protect liars because they are liars themselves.

People won't see because the truth was never in them in the first place.

People won't pass good laws to protect the innocent because they themselves want to be able to get away with the same kind of crimes.

And religion is a great cover and you can bet your butt - they know ALL about that one. Is quite the old con....

So, I think it would suffice to tell you - I do understand....... And I have also had a God that has said - "listen to me and only me because there are going to be times that even those who profess my name will want to serve you up to be burned at the stake". And that has been completely 100$ true and has been quite the wound in me. Many times I have backed away even from God and said - I can't do this anymore...I know you've trained me, I know I step to a different beat, I understand all that - but it's just too much, I am soo alone in this...I see things that no one else seems to sometimes and I DON'T LIKE IT!!!, except for now and then a woman like the one that gave me shelter... they are so few...and I get weary, discouraged...

Then I started hearing a deeper understanding of things from God to me and He taught me some things about - being a warrior - things I didn't always want to hear. One such bout I had with being stubborn ended with Ezekiel 33 being opened to me. I won't go into how that happened but let's just say - it was no accident. I wish it had of been and just for good measure - it was stuck in my face a second time to make sure - I "got" it.

So my walk with God has been a little bit "different" to say the least. I've been called a witch, the seven things that God hates by one pastor - to his congregation, such a nasty little piece of business I've been, huh? *smile* But one of my favorite women is Mary Magadelene and God's example of her - stands - whether anyone in robes or self-righteous whatever wants to recognize it or not. Wouldn't be the first time that things were purposely overlooked....

The only other thing I can say to you is - Stand, stand some more and in the end - Continue to Stand.

September 24, 2002
11:42 am
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I remember being so bored at mass that I chewed the varnish off the pews in front of us when I was like 4 or 5. My Mom let me bring coloring books and stuff. I never felt comfortable at mass - it was always torturous. My sisters and I would wake up at the crack of dawn and turn off my parents' alarm clocks on Sundays, but they always seemed to wake up anyway, ha ha ha.

I learned about hyporcrisy from going to mass twice a week, every week, for 10 years. So much stupid gossip, "Oh look at what Mary Margaret is wearing to *church*, she's of loose values, you know..." blah blah blah. I went to Catholic school so I saw the teachers and parents being just as sinful and cruel as those plebians who never went.

I hated that part.

September 24, 2002
7:13 pm
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Ladeska~

Oh Lord how you pull at my heart strings. You've been thru so much yet you so so grounded and amazingly strong. Your strength inspires me.

You obviously know exactly of what I speak. My ex and I married very young, both from a small town where his father is very prominant so no one ever expected or looked at him to be a bad seed.....and he hasn't been in anyone's eyes.

My ex was a coke addict, when I was pregnant with our first child (she is almost 11) he confessed to me that everything we had was gone....snorted up his nose. We had to file bankruptcy and all was lost. But I stood by him. He's a white collar criminal. His crimes are with money and decieving people. He can talk anyone into anything (the con) and it's scary. Meanwhile, back in this tiny town that we come from (we moved to the Chicago area 15 years ago) everyone sees this rich, successful guy who has really done well for himself. God, if they only knew how. By lying and cheating everyone he could....even his own father.

That's just the tip of the ice berg....I could write books about the type of person he his. He now makes me out to be the big bad oger that cheated on him and broke up our family. Oh I know how people look at it from the outside, but no one else was there and no one else knows what I went thru and why I turned to someone else.

My father was an alcoholic, my mother, the saint that stood by him until the day he died. She pretended life was normal. I think I was looking for someone to take care of me and he did. Or so I thought.

My ex now uses my co-dependency and my issues with my fathers death and everything else I can think of against me. He has told me I was "mental" since the day we got together and to this day tells me I live in a fantasy world. The most difficult part of all of that is that HE is living the lies. Pretending to be a saint, pretending to be a great father and friend.

He does not keep long term friends, people think he is great at the first impression, once they get to know him, his controlling, his lies....they tend to leave. I never noticed this until once I was on the outside looking in. I was a fool, I was niave.

He looks down his nose at anyone who drinks, does drugs, or isn't what he thinks they should be. He judges, he ridicules and he preaches. He starts going to church, taking his kids and putting on that front of goddliness. Our kids had to spend the summer with him because I could not afford care for them since I wasn't getting child support. I told him that until he started working again and I started getting support, the kids would have to stay there while I go to work. He made it out like he was "super dad" staying home for the summer with his kids. Uggggg. Makes me want to puke.

Everytime I worry about things people tell me that any honest person could see thru him. I don't agree. He is a con, he can con anyone, he can con a judge I'm sure......

Venting, venting, venting, this is getting longer than I thought. You sparked a trigger in me too I guess. I just hate the self righteous I am holy thing. God can't be an escape, what kind of person uses it as an escape, as a cover up. It's sickening. People are sick.

September 24, 2002
8:10 pm
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It's the M.O. of a pure narcissist with strong psychopathic tendencies. They feel nothing for anyone and they use every human weakness like it was toilet paper for their precious bum. And yet YOU who cry Wolf and freaking mean it - are the bad guy...yea, yea, would know about that one. Makes you want to vomit, doesn't it? Well, as crazy as it sounds, just me no realizing that people hold hands with people, make an honest decision to cover this butt because they are of like character and mind - helps me somewhat....it gives me an answer to a very difficult question. And as always - it is the few - that really turn out by walking through this fiery gauntlet a true warrior. Tried by fire sort of thing. I can only encourage you because I know what comes at you is fueled mainly by "fear"...and that's a good sign actually. Because they do know - where the real power is and they know you possess it. But IF they can side track you make you doubt yourself, get you to sit and spin, engage with them become weak from their endless mindgames then they can defeat you....are you following me here? What I am here to tell you quite simply is - see above the commotion, get to a higher place and see what's really up here in the way of strategy adn outfox him. I know you can do this and you have to do this but it will be with your mind and your will involved and your emotions - in tow, disciplined and under wraps. (smile) You bleed for no one, especially the likes of this piece of crap! And even if you are the only one standing - STAND anyway.

September 25, 2002
11:47 am
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Big sigh, ahhhhhhhhhhh!

Thank you Ladeska.

I know of what you say. I wrote the same things to Mossrose only last week. Stay strong, never let him see you weak, blah, blah blah. I know all of it and I can tell everyone else. Just gets hard sometimes when I see him in his "glory" with his neighbors and church buddies. He is such a con. I guess just talking it out here makes me realize it just that much more. Most of the time I see it, then he'll start being Mr nicey nice for a while and I forget just how he can be.

God Ladeska, that's exactly what he does. Plays on my weakness, on our kids weaknesses and everyone elses but then he likes to play the victim. Poor me, my wife left me, I've lost my big house, fancy car, poor, poor me and people buy into it.

Yes, makes me want to vomit. Right on his front steps!!!

Thanks for your support. It helps.

Be well

September 25, 2002
11:54 am
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What they do is almost boring... It's just such an easy read - once you know the M.O. I think when you can get to the point that you project that boredom in his direction with a large dose of apathy - you'll feel better and he'll just be confused. They never do quite understand why people don't worship them or fall apart because of their mindgames!

Ah yes, the life of a narissist - the constant soap opera with them as the only STAR! Gag me. Borrriiinnggg....

Well, you just talk it out all you need to because sometimes you just get to feeling like - you're the only one who knows.........and that gets a little be freaky. Been there, done that. No, you're not alone and you have a good mind and you do see - exactly what's up here.

September 25, 2002
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My personal view of God is that it isn't a white haired old man sitting on a throne up on high . . . more a greater spirit. And I feel we all have a spirit - you know, the body dies but the spirit still lives. My theory is that since EVERYTHING you can name can be recycled, then the soul must also be recyclable.

I don't believe in pushing religion down peoples' throats and hate it when people try to do it to me (particularly Jehovah's Witnesses). I try to be kind and to do nice things for other people with the hope that they won't see me as weak and foolish.

I know some of the bible, and know we share many of the Old Testament stories with both the Jews and the Muslims. Guess that means it must stack as an historic document, at least. And I think many of the teachings are good, too - charity, forgiveness and so on.

I have beliefs that are odd to many and downright wicked to a few (though less so these days, 25 years ago I was considered quite bizzare) . . . but I'm very comfortable with those beliefs and believe the best beliefs for you are those that you are comfortable with. And if your beliefs are not the same as the next man's, it really doesn't matter so long as they're right for you.

September 25, 2002
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UK~

Yes, I agree, we are spiritual beings having a human experience. That is a quote by Robert Burney, the author of Codependency: Dance of the Wounded Soul.

I too don't have the picture as most do of God. I think more of a higher power and of mother earth and I thank them daily for the gifts that they bring.

I have yet to find a church that doesn't cram it down your throught. "Be a good Christian and go to church every Sunday and live a Christian live and you will be Saved" "Don't, and you will go to hell" I don't want anyone preaching to my children or myself that we will go to hell if we do not follow their rules. Find me a church or religion that doesn't and I'll go to that one. Hummmm, maybe I'll just start my own and only allow us wicked woman!!!

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