Leaving Religion – MOVED – www.leavingreligion.com

Finding my own way…

Felt Jesus

I loved felt Jesus when I was growing up. I’d go to Sunday school, and the nice lady would put beautiful and clean felt Jesus on the felt board. He looked so nice and innocent… like he just wanted to be my friend. She told us that he loved us and would save us from our sins and give us a personal relationship with God. It all sounded pretty good to me.

I did wonder how I’d become so bad that I needed saving, but figured I’d gotten in trouble with my parents, so maybe that was bad enough. You know, felt Jesus left my world when I got a little older, and with that, he became a lot harder to figure out. He was no longer this nice easy felt piece sitting in front of me. He was now a more imaginary figure and didn’t make so much sense to me. I didn’t know how to talk to him, didn’t know how to hear him, and wasn’t sure what would happen to me if I couldn’t figure these two things out.

I did everything I knew to do to get in touch with Jesus. I read the Bible, went to Bible Study, went to Youth Group, went to Camp, sang songs, made good friends, memorized versus… you name it, I did it. I still wasn’t sure how everyone around me was hearing Jesus, when all I could hear was static. I finally started faking it by diving in as far as I could. Evangelizing, reading devotionals, becoming a Bible Study leader. For a brief time I did think I was finally hearing Jesus tell me what to do. Turns out, it was just my own voice… I believe my sub-conscious got sick of trying to hear Jesus, so it just became Jesus for me.

Finally, I gave up trying to hear Jesus. Then I realized, all that time, all that conviction, all that anger towards the ‘secular world’, all the feelings I’d had… we’re false. We’re just me trying to make it happen. Were just my subconscious and ego getting the best of me. In my mid 20’s, I left it… but it hasn’t been until now… in my mid 30’s that I’ve really let myself let go entirely. Let myself be honest about the fact that I don’t believe in the Christianity I grew up with. That’s not the easiest thing to do… but once I did, I felt lighter. No more fighting that internal battle that would not end.

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May 21, 2009 - Posted by | Growing Up, Leaving Religion | , ,

4 Comments »

  1. Hey Leaving Religion, I stumbled over from Cynical-C’s. I’m glad you came back from your hiatus. One of my favorites (looking back now) was “faith like a child”.

    About the separation of Church and State, I always want the people who want laws for the church to put themselves in the shoes of someone who believes in a different church, maybe a mosque, and see if they still want to live in a theocracy. Saudi Arabia does not seem like a fun place to live.

    Comment by Seth | May 21, 2009 | Reply

  2. My story is very similar to yours. I have fond memories of much of my church experience in meeting friends and playing music. But it became undeniably obvious that the foundation of Christianity is built on false folklore.

    The Bible is much too flawed to be a valid divine document. And with the fact that god does not speak to us, he does not answer prayer, allows bad things to happen to innocent people and allows Christians to justify evil behavior with their religion, I couldn’t be a blind sheep anymore.

    I too am enjoying the lifted weight of guilt and faith in the invisible. I am the same person, just much more in touch with reality.

    Comment by theBEattitude | May 26, 2009 | Reply

  3. Thanks for stopping by and commenting! It’s good to hear I’m not alone when it comes to my feelings about Jesus as a kid an how it changed as I got older (and wiser). I look forward to writng more on this and many other topics over time.

    Comment by LeavingReligion | May 28, 2009 | Reply

  4. Hey there, “Leaving Religion.” It is true that you are definitely not alone in your feelings. But, there are others of us (like me!) for whom Jesus (or perhaps you would prefer, the idea of Jesus) became MORE of a reality with age, rather than less.

    I’m certainly not arguing with your experience; I believe all you write here is what you have experienced, and I respect that! But my own experience has been different.

    Hope you are having a lovely day~

    Comment by Angela | June 10, 2009 | Reply


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