Skip to main content

I Give Up--Stop the planet and let me get off...

By Klym ~

Dear Ex-C,

I write this article with a heavy heart. I posted a comment on FaceBook that I knew would be controversial, but I never expected one of the replies I received. The reply was not posted on my FB page---my "friend" sent me a personal email this morning. I should have expected it---I don't know why I am so surprised and so deeply hurt. This friend was, after all, a Baptist missionary for many years in China. In our twenties, we were best friends---soulmates, really. He was the nearest thing to a brother that I ever had and he helped me through some horrible times in my life. I have a great deal of love and respect for this man, but his email made me cry. It seriously hurt me in the deepest part of my soul.

So, I post it here and welcome your insights; in fact, I need your insights. And keep in mind that my "friend" is not a bad guy---he just honestly believes that my post was "dangerous" to the message of Jesus. ME and my thoughts are DANGEROUS?? I can't even wrap my mind around that.

Here is the email I received that includes my FB post:

"I saw your post on Facebook recently, and I wanted to reply to you. I don't plan to unfriend you, because you have meant too much to me as a friend, I have loved you as a friend, for too many years to let a political difference be a wall between us. I disagree with several of your statements, and I do feel strongly enough about them to point them out. I've quoted your post below to make it easier for me to refer to it.


I'm going to get political & when I'm done, some of you may want to unfriend me. But that's OK because I am passionate about this "issue". I am a liberal progressive Unitarian Universalist & I can't logically understand how ultra-conservative Republican Christians can claim that their politics follow Jesus' teachings. The fact is that Jesus was a socialist. He told the rich man to sell everything & follow him. Jesus advocated for the marginalized in society--that's who he hung out with. He healed people's illnesses & did not ask to be paid for it. He was the furthest thing from a capitalist as is possible. He was anti-war, respected women, & said to love your neighbor as yourself. Immigrants are our neighbors; LGBTQ people are our neighbors; people of all religions or no religion at all are our neighbors, right? Jesus practiced a radical hospitality that got him crucified. So, how can true followers of Jesus be conservative capitalists?

It just isn't logical, to my thinking.


If Jesus had come for political purposes many of your conclusions would be right; but Jesus did not at all come for any secular reason. He told Pilate, "My kingdom is not of this world." [John 18]

The conversation with the rich young man was not about economics, it was about the heart. Jesus told him to sell everything, not because He wanted to redistribute wealth, but because it was a test of his heart. He had just asked Jesus how he could have eternal life, and claimed he had done all of the commandments in the law. (We know that was actually false, because the whole point of the law is that no one can keep the law in his own strength.) Jesus told him there was one thing he lacked. He told him to give up his possessions because He knew that was an idol to him, that it was more important to him than God; and the young man left sad, because he saw his own heart too. [Luke 18] Conversely, when Zaccheus said he would give half his wealth to the poor, Jesus was overjoyed, not because “socialism has come to this house,” but because “salvation has come to this house.” [Luke 19]

“Jesus advocated for the marginalized in society--that's who he hung out with.” He certainly hung out with them, but His reason for doing so was spiritual, not societal. “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” [Luke 5] In fact, on at least two occasions that I can find Jesus ate with very rich people [Levi the tax collector, Luke 5; Simon the Pharisee, Luke 7]. In both instances Jesus talked to them about forgiveness and repentance.

“Jesus practiced a radical hospitality that got him crucified.” Again, it wasn’t Jesus’ hospitality or politics or socio-economic policy that got Him killed. It was His claim to be equal with God that enraged the people in power so much that they wanted Him dead; and they stopped at nothing to make it happen. [Luke 20 - 22]

I don’t know about “ultra-conservative,” but I am a conservative, a Republican, and a Christian. I’d be glad to discuss with you how I reconcile those positions, but that’s outside the scope of what I wanted to say this time.

It’s really dangerous to take the words of Christ and make them say something He didn’t intend. Jesus came to earth in obedience to His Father’s will, to take the punishment for the sins of men and to give His own righteousness to them, and to demonstrate how one can live in obedience to God. To make His life about social causes cheapens His life and His death, and directs men’s attention away from issues of eternal significance in favor of things that will not last.

OK, I’ve had my say. If you want to dialog about these things, I’d be happy to do that; you know how I love to talk. If not, please know that we love you and hope to see you again next time we come down to Texas, whenever that may be."

Here is my reply to him:

Dear friend,

Thanks for your thoughtful response. You know I love you too, and always will.

You might as well know that I am no longer a Christian or a believer in Bible God. I have changed a lot through the years. Please don't think I stopped believing on a whim. Being a Christian was always difficult for me, but I hid it pretty well because I wanted so badly to fit in with my friends & with the culture around me.

As I have told my husband, who is still a Christian--I no longer believe in a God who would create a place of eternal torment for ANY of his creatures to spend an eternity in. I no longer believe in a god who requires a blood sacrifice to make us acceptable to him. The Bible is a translation of a translation of a translation--you know I have read & studied it all my life. I can no longer do the mental gymnastics required to reconcile all its contradictions, etc.

Even as a little girl it didn't make sense to me. When I asked probing questions, my Sunday School teachers would chastise me for thinking too much, not having enough faith, blah, blah, blah. I was demonized when I divorced my first husband, even though he abused me in every possible way. I was told I would go to hell for not staying with him & "suffering for righteousness sake."

Anyway, I am now a Unitarian Universalist, which means so much to me. My friends at church are atheists, agnostics, Buddhists, Pagans, Mystics, humanists, & liberal Christians, Jews, etc. There are many, many lesbians & gay men among my best & closest friends. You can google UU principles & sources to get an idea of what I believe & live out as my core values & principles.

One more thing-- it's always deeply disturbed me to think that millions of people who came before and after Jesus are going to hell. IF there IS an afterlife, which I highly doubt, based on my personal experiences (especially with the deaths of my parents), then I believe in UNIVERSAL salvation--that Jesus died for every living being--not just Christians.

I told my husband that him being a Christian, he must believe that I am now going to hell, based on fundamentalist Christian doctrine. He has a hard time with that because he loves me & thinks I am a good person. He thinks being "good" counts for something. He wasn't raised in a fundamental thinking church, BTW.

Anyway, I know all the above is probably a shock to you. I have no interest in further "debate" because I'm sure nothing you say will change my mind & nothing I say will change yours. We need not think alike to love alike.

One more thing--after 17 years of counseling abused & neglected children, & sometimes spending hours on my knees praying to God to protect them--& then watching as they continued to suffer year after year after year--I began to wonder if there really is a personal God watching over them. There didn't seem to be.

Ok, I'm done.

Love always,


After I wrote the above, and had a good cry, I felt like I wanted to move away---out of the USA and to someplace where religion no longer creates division among people. But, there doesn't seem to be a place like that on this earth, hence the title of this article. So stop the planet and let me off. I'm tired of all the hate spewed in the name of religion. Since the attacks in Paris, it seems people have gone off the deep end. I went to get my hair cut this morning and my hairdresser told me she had gotten her CHL license and had a loaded gun in her purse now. I almost walked out of the salon, and I'm debating whether to ever go back. I'm just altogether sick and tired of it all. (Cue the song "Imagine" now---John Lennon, you were a genius!)


Popular posts from this blog


By David Andrew Dugle ~ O ctober. Halloween. It's time to visit the haunted house I used to live in. When I was five my dad was able to build a big modern house. Moving in before it was complete, my younger brother and I were sleeping in a large unfinished area directly under the living room. It should have been too new to be a haunted house, but now and then I would wake up in the tiny, dark hours and see the blurry image of a face, or at least what I took to be a face, glowing, faintly yellow, high up on the wall near the ceiling. I'm not kidding! Most nights it didn’t appear at all. But when it did show itself, at first I thought it was a ghost and it scared me like nothing else I’d ever seen. But the face never did anything; unmoving, it just stayed in that one spot. Turning on the lights would make it disappear, making my fears difficult to explain, so I never told anyone. My Sunday School teachers had always told me to be good because God was just behind m

The Blame Game or Shit Happens

By Webmdave ~ A relative suffering from Type 1 diabetes was recently hospitalized for an emergency amputation. The physicians hoped to halt the spread of septic gangrene seeping from an incurable foot wound. Naturally, family and friends were very concerned. His wife was especially concerned. She bemoaned, “I just don’t want this (the advanced sepsis and the resultant amputation) to be my fault.” It may be that this couple didn’t fully comprehend the seriousness of the situation. It may be that their choice of treatment was less than ideal. Perhaps their home diabetes maintenance was inconsistent. Some Christians I know might say the culprit was a lack of spiritual faith. Others would credit it all to God’s mysterious will. Surely there is someone or something to blame. Someone to whom to ascribe credit. Isn’t there? A few days after the operation, I was talking to a man who had family members who had suffered similar diabetic experiences. Some of those also suffered ea

Christian TV presenter reads out Star Wars plot as story of salvation

An email prankster tricked the host of a Christian TV show into reading out the plots of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and Star Wars in the belief they were stories of personal salvation. The unsuspecting host read out most of the opening rap to The Fresh Prince, a 1990s US sitcom starring Will Smith , apparently unaware that it was not a genuine testimony of faith. The prankster had slightly adapted the lyrics but the references to a misspent youth playing basketball in West Philadelphia would have been instantly familiar to most viewers. The lines read out by the DJ included: "One day a couple of guys who were up to no good starting making trouble in my living area. I ended up getting into a fight, which terrified my mother." The presenter on Genesis TV , a British Christian channel, eventually realised that he was being pranked and cut the story short – only to move on to another spoof email based on the plot of the Star Wars films. It began: &quo

Are You an Atheist Success Story?

By Avangelism Project ~ F acts don’t spread. Stories do. It’s how (good) marketing works, it’s how elections (unfortunately) are won and lost, and it’s how (all) religion spreads. Proselytization isn’t accomplished with better arguments. It’s accomplished with better stories and it’s time we atheists catch up. It’s not like atheists don’t love a good story. Head over to the atheist reddit and take a look if you don’t believe me. We’re all over stories painting religion in a bad light. Nothing wrong with that, but we ignore the value of a story or a testimonial when we’re dealing with Christians. We can’t be so proud to argue the semantics of whether atheism is a belief or deconversion is actually proselytization. When we become more interested in defining our terms than in affecting people, we’ve relegated ourselves to irrelevance preferring to be smug in our minority, but semantically correct, nonbelief. Results Determine Reality The thing is when we opt to bury our

Reasons for my disbelief

By Rebekah ~ T here are many layers to the reasons for my disbelief, most of which I haven't even touched on here... When I think of Evangelical Christianity, two concepts come to mind: intense psychological traps, and the danger of glossing over and missing a true appreciation for the one life we know that we have. I am actually agnostic when it comes to a being who set creation in motion and remains separated from us in a different realm. If there is a deistic God, then he/she doesn't particularly care if I believe in them, so I won't force belief and instead I will focus on this one life that I know I have, with the people I can see and feel. But I do have a lot of experience with the ideas of God put forth by Evangelical Christianity, and am confident it isn't true. If it's the case god has indeed created both a physical and a heavenly spiritual realm, then why did God even need to create a physical realm? If the point of its existence is to evolve to pas

Why I left the Canadian Reformed Church

By Chuck Eelhart ~ I was born into a believing family. The denomination is called Canadian Reformed Church . It is a Dutch Calvinistic Christian Church. My parents were Dutch immigrants to Canada in 1951. They had come from two slightly differing factions of the same Reformed faith in the Netherlands . Arriving unmarried in Canada they joined the slightly more conservative of the factions. It was a small group at first. Being far from Holland and strangers in a new country these young families found a strong bonding point in their church. Deutsch: Heidelberger Katechismus, Druck 1563 (Photo credit: Wikipedia ) I was born in 1955 the third of eventually 9 children. We lived in a small southern Ontario farming community of Fergus. Being young conservative and industrious the community of immigrants prospered. While they did mix and work in the community almost all of the social bonding was within the church group. Being of the first generation born here we had a foot in two