I was raised Christian, Assemblies of God actually. And I have been questioning Christianity for years. Started reading more and more about it. I found your website because I was looking up speaking in tongues and the scientific explanation for it. I have spent the last two hours reading about it on here. And it is indeed eye opening.
I was "slain in the spirit" probably about when I was 13-14 at church. It was not a huge spiritual experience like they boasted it would be. I faked it. I fell because I felt like I had to. Then laying on the floor with the cover they put over me I just laid there thinking "What just happened to me?" I was really confused and just brushed it off as it not being a real spiritual experience. And I thought "it just isn't my time, and my day will come". And it never did. As far as speaking in tongues... It is amazing the posts on here because I feel like they are writing them directly to me. I received the "gift of tongues" in almost the same way as being "slain in the holy spirit" I did it because I felt like I had to. And when I did it I noticed I was just repeating things over and over. I would always whisper because I didn't think I was doing it right and I didn't want other people to hear me and judge me. Sitting here I can still do it and its 4:19 am and I'm listening to music. Not having some strong spiritual experience.
I was in church as early as a month ago. I went because it was the only day of the week I got to spend with my parents. And they always go to church. Church to me was always family oriented. We would go to church then come home and just spend the whole day together, make dinner, play games and just hang out together. It was the only day people where not busy. The same deal with holidays. My most fond memories with my family are on the holidays -- not celebrating Jesus' birth or resurrection.
From an early age where I started being able to think for myself I always had a question in the back of my mind about Christianity... Jesus seemed a whole like Santa Clause... Meaning not real. But I was taught that Jesus was real. So I stopped believing in Santa and continued to try to believe in Jesus.
I still get emotional around Easter. I went to a passion play this year and cried. I can't think of the Easter story with out feeling some emotion. But I have always questioned the death and resurrection part... I always wonder "If Jesus knew he was going to resurrect. Why do people act like this is a huge sacrifice? Because it really isn't he came back." Then I started reading about Krishna, Mithra and Horus and how almost every element of Christianity was derived from those stories. And I feel like I have been lied to for 29 years and it breaks my heart.
I have an incredible guilt associated with non belief. I consider myself agnostic. Even saying that word out loud makes me scared of Hell... And I am sad that I have been taught to be fearful. And they don't even realize that is what they are teaching: fear. I feel guilty for even typing that. The Bible teaches that there is one unforgivable sin and that is to reject God. I am scared I have done that. It is the guilt... I can't shake it or get rid of it. I cant get rid of the voice in the back of my head saying "what if it is real?" even though I know it probably isn't. I feel so ingrained with Christianity. And I feel ingrained with bright eyed questions about the possibility of it not even being real. I feel very torn.
I have questions about the explanation of miracles. I have seen what I thought was to be miracles... I want to read more about that. Maybe you can recommend a book or a website?
Also about demon possession. I saw what was supposedly a demon possessed man dragged out in the middle of a church service. He stood up and started shouting obscenities at the Pastor. The Pastor was speaking on "The blood of Jesus" which, we where taught Satan and the Demons hate... Any recommendations of where I can read about that?
I have several more philosophical questions... Like the explanation of our universe and so on. I don't believe in Evolution nor do I believe in Creationism.
Thank you for your website. It was a pleasant surprise. And I am so thankful that I am not the only one that struggles with. It makes me really happy to know I am not alone :)
I am grateful for the revolutions I am having but it is also really hard for me to let go of things ingrained in me. I got a little emotional even writing this...
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