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My letter to God

By True Anathema ~

I was raised in the Charismatic movement in the North during the "revival" of 1976. I gave my heart to Jesus and "Baptized in the Holy Spirit" before the age of 6. I moved in the gifts of the spirit and had several tangible experiences in my early childhood and teen years (which I now recognize as psychotic episodes because of bi-polar disorder). At the age of 31 I began questioning the inerrancy of the Word of God and the person-hood of Jesus Christ, along with the existence of hell. Most recently, I disposed of that faith altogether, but it is still a very hard journey. I have a family member that has given me permission to speak my doubts and the freedom I have experienced has been very liberating. However, the journey with my family is a difficult one as some made it very clear they are not willing to have me question, so I lead two lives and am being patient until I am able to be the person I believe I am. I have written a letter to God declaring our relationship over and it is below. I can at least be honest there.

Dear God,

We've never actually met, but there is not a memory of mine that you have not corrupted. From earliest years, I have desperately sought your approval. By approval I mean reprieve from an eternity of torturous damnation in your lake of everlasting fire.

Quite frankly, the boundaries of our relationship are all one sided, and are not working out in my favor. I can't possibly know your mind, but you are always in mine, ever seeing, ever knowing and ever speaking when I am trying to think, speak, play, work, eat and sleep. I often don't even remember what you've said.

You are not bound by space and time, but I am bound to operate within your will once I figure out what that is, because you get to speak in riddles while I must pray with enough clarity and with the right combination of words in order for you to hear and answer.

I must obey you immediately and without question and well...damnit, you get to move in your own sweet time. I realized something today: the grass IS greener on the other side. I need no shepherd to lead me. Please, don't leave the ninety and nine in search of me because I am not lost. I've packed up my intellect, my conscience, my money and the rest of my things. You'll find the place empty, except for the guilt which I've left smashed on the floor. I don't need that any more and you can keep it.

I have noticed you lurking around since I've decided to venture out on my own. I feel you in the shadows when I'm sleeping and the messages you've delivered through your "servants" leave much to be desired in the way of compassion and understanding. I would file a restraining order, but I believe they'd probably lock me up and throw away the key, which brings me to the purpose of this letter.

I thought you should know that the rumors of your existence have been greatly exaggerated. I'm going to ignore you from now on, in much the same way that a person with split personality disorder ignores their lifelong companions in the hope that one day they'll disappear all together.

You lied to me. You said you loved me unconditionally, but your love is NOT love. It is conditional. If I doubt you or your word, I am exiled to eternity in the fires of hell. That is not love. That is abuse, control and manipulation.

You are NOT all present and all knowing. You are glaringly absent and you know nothing. You have told me you walk beside me, but I look back and see only one set of footprints because you are a figment of my imagination.

You have taken time and talents from me and given me nothing in return. Where is my recompense which you promised me? Who will give back to me all the missed opportunities, the money I should have used to pay for education and vacations with my family. Who will retrieve from you the money and time I should have given to the poor and oppressed instead of to your "prophets" who line their own pockets with righteous money.

You are an ego-maniacal tyrant. You say that every knee must bow and every tongue confess that you are God. Rulers and kings like you kill entire generations. Why did I think you would be any different? I gave you beauty and you gave me ashes, I gave you joy and you gave me mourning. I thought it was supposed to be the other way around.

This is my last prayer.