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11/15/2009                                                                                       View Comments

Finding God's Will

by Neal Stone

All my life as a Christian I was told to find God's will. I had no idea in the beginning what that was or how to do it. Any attempt to find out resulted in me being pushed aside so the more popular kids could find God's Will.

So for a time I fumbled around looking for his will.

As time went on I noticed some things that happened while in church.

I recall one family who son went in the back yard to play. They called him for dinner and he never came. So they went outside to find him and discovered him face down in the mud not breathing. As I recall the child died.

At the funeral and in the halls of the church I would hear that “God had his reasons” or “It was God's will and he has a purpose for this.”

Time went on. A man in our church spent every minute not at work at the church working. Sometimes he brought his wife and kids and sometimes he just went straight from work. They never went to the movies or go anywhere on vacation. All his spare time was spent at the church.

All my life as a Christian I was told to find God's will. I had no idea [...] what that was or how to do it. His wife left him for a single man in the church. He had lots of time on his hands and it wasn't spent in church. I remember the uproar it caused and how everyone rallied around the husband after his wife left him. Supporting him and say “God has a plan for you.” and “It must be what the Lord wants.” and of course being reminded he was free to spend all his time serving the Lord at the church.

I recall one family that let their son go to church. This family wasn't a church member but their kids went. One day they went rafting. All the adults were drunk and the raft was not properly inflated. They hit a rock and their oldest son, about 8 years old, went flying into the river. His body was found a few days later.

At the funeral it was reminded that “It was God's Will” and that he sometimes calls young ones home for a reason.

I recall people dying of cancer, families being divided, women living with violent abusive husbands, but it was all God's Will.

In 1997 I was living with my parents, my health was bad, my job was min. wage and a dead end, there were major problems with my family at home and my life was going nowhere. But it was ok, as long as I was doing God's will.

Is this what I was to look for in my life? This was it? This was God's Will? Constant suffering and agony is the best he can do for me?

I have found God's Will and I don't want it. Sorry God, got better things to do.

Oh look! A Cheetos shaped like Jesus....crunch!

27 comments:

webmdave said...

Thanks for sharing. I actually happened upon your blog on google image search looking for info on a sermon I am preaching on discovering God's will, and that's exactly what I was looking for. I'm sorry that this has been your experience with Christians, although I'm sure you've found the same kind of stupid sentiments given by non-Christians as well. The problems with the difficulties of life are not easily solved by pithy statements and sentiment, no matter where you have placed your faith (Jesus, yourself, etc). The amazing thing is--Jesus never gave pithy statements. He gave incredibly hard statements. I would say that most of those Christians who would say, "It's God's will that your child died" don't really know Jesus at all.

webmdave said...

It seems like everything would have to be God's will, else it wouldn't have happened to begin with. As awful as that idea is, it seems more believable than: there's a God up there feeling your pain-PLEASE!

I sincerely hope you aren't telling people that must discover God's will. If there is a God, why would he want you to have to struggle to find his will? Why would he hide it from you? Doesn't sound very loving to me.

I grew up on that "discovering God's will" mess-just another confusing and frustrating part of Chrisitianity. It's only those who don't take it all too seriously that can be happy in it, in my opinion.

webmdave said...

Xian guest: I would say that most of those Christians who would say, "It's God's will that your child died" don't really know Jesus at all.

Oh, I see. So, "most" of the Christians who would say, "It's God's will that [insert any adverse situation]", don't really know Jesus.

Okay, but what about the Christians who do supposedly "know Jesus", who say the same kind of incredibly cruel and insensitve things, since, when you say "most", that implies a majority, but not all.

Which "Christians" have it "right", and what kind of objective reference can you offer to support your answer? ' Listening.

webmdave said...

Hey, thanks for responding and listening. There are Christians who do say ridiculously insensitive and stupid things, and they are incredibly irresponsible with their mouths. That's why the Bible warns about how destructively powerful the mouth is (James 3:6 says that the tongue is a "world of evil", and a "fire").
That said, we all have moments of vast stupidity where we wish we could go back and either say something else, or say nothing at all. Nobody is perfect, not even "Christians" (James 3:2).
You want to know what a real Christian looks like? Galatians 5:22-23 tells you. Guess what? It's not the blow-hards on Fox News. It's not the political nay-sayers who are known more for what they are against than what they are for. Jesus said, "By their fruit you shall know them." Their lives will show whether they truly believe.

webmdave said...

Not everything that is God's will happens. According to 1 Thessalonians 4:3, it is God's will that we avoid sexual immorality. Whoops!
I understand that there are some people who talk about the "mystical" will of God; the unique plan that God has that we should be doing. I really don't believe it is that difficult at all to discover it. He's revealed so much of it already, and He's made us all distinct with different passions and talents. I'm sorry your experience was so awful--it is very distressing as a pastor to see so many who are turned off of church and Christianity because of bad teaching and modeling.

webmdave said...

God has a plan? How about this one:
God so loved the world...that he drowned it.

Unfortunately, that act merely made his incompetence all the more obvious, because the world is still filled with evil people.

As Glebealyth so wisely put it, "The most convincing evidence that there is no god, is that I treat my children better then he treats his!”

webmdave said...

Hmm. Not sure I remember that Scripture. Are you sure you are not a Christian? You seem to be able to rip things out of context with the best of them :)
The world is still filled with evil people because there are still people in the world.
The parent/child argument is really good. It actually proves God. Most moms & dads (I am a proud dad of 3) are really mean to their kids early on. No to this and that, not letting kids do whatever they want, whenever they want. Insisting they go to bed at a reasonable time, eat their vegetables, etc. Is that bad parenting, or good parenting that the child simply cannot understand?
Now, bring God into the equation. We have collectively given God the middle-finger and said we don't need Him. So, he has given us over to our own desires (Romans 1:18-32). We have reaped a world that we have created, and now blame Him for our mess.
BTW: There was a reason why God "drowned" the world. You should read it. Don't just listen to what someone else says about it. Read it for yourself.

webmdave said...

pastorjimmy,

Please do us all here a favor. I know I'm probably asking a lot. But please don't send your congregation here to show us "The Way", the error of our ways, or to shower us with xtian love. Remember the purpose of this website is to support those who have decided to leave religion behind, as the site disclaimer clearly states.

Thanking you in advance,
BP

webmdave said...

I would say that most of those Christians who would say, "It's God's will that your child died" don't really know Jesus at all.

I would say they are ignorant of science and were very superstitious, as well as primitive and barbaric in their thinking.

webmdave said...

You want to know what a real Christian looks like?

That's what they all ask and they all say different things. It is not different than my grandfather saying, "Wesley had it right. Calvin had it wrong." So there you go. Same old same old BS.

webmdave said...

BP,
I'm not going to send anyone your way. As I stated, I simply found this site on a google search, and I wanted to post a simple response to what I found (which, as I examined site disclaimer, is something I am allowed to do).
I don't believe I have tried to show someone "The Way", or show someone the error of their ways. I simply responded to that original post, and I was sorry that this was his experience of Christianity. That's all. I was also trying to point out that there are many who claim to be "Christians", but only because they think that being a Christian makes one happy,problem-free, health, wealthy, wise, better, fill-in-the-blank.
I have responded to those who challenged me as a believer; I don't believe that I was disrespectful to anyone. I simply wanted to answer their posts and challenge them to think through or read those things that they challenged me with. I apologize if I have overstepped the bounds of the disclaimer. If, by responding, I have violated that disclaimer, please let me know and I will stop responding. I am not trying to proselytize anyone, just challenging them to think through some of these issues.
Thanks for the response!

webmdave said...

It actually proves God.

ROFLMBO! You can't prove God. I feel sorry for those people who are mean to their children. However, you example of "mean" is not mean at all and is hardly in line with the Bible stories.

And just how does your analogy prove God? Sorry, but I don't see how it does that. Drowning people is really a cruel thing to do and is totally different then making sure your child gets their nutritional needs met. It is psychotic.

BTW, I've studied religion, many of them including Xianity, and I've read the Bible many times over. It is nothing more than rewritten mythology and has nothing to do with anything real.

webmdave said...

Jimy,

When my kids were young, I was mean to them. It meant that they survived to adulthood. I could have jut ignored them and allowed to die under the wheels of a bus. What I did was to chastise them so that they developed behaviour patterns that increased their chances of survival.

I also answered their prayers!

I did not leave them to starve, because it was in my power to feed them. The same cannot be said for our putative heavenly father.

"Give us this day, our daily bread" is prayed, in one form or another, all over the world. It is strange that those who really need it rarely find it being delivered, an the few that do must first accept and believe your mythology before the missionaries will deliver the bread.

When my kids asked for information, I gave it to them in a way they could understand, mediated by the stage of understanding they were at. Your heavenly father ignores requests for information. Were this not the case, there would be just the one xian sect, not the 30,000 or so, all of which believe the same holy spirit is teaching them different things.

I never blamed nor punished my children for my failures. Your HF did so to Adam and Eve, who, despite bring sinless at the time of its commission, were blamed for eating the fruit and unjustly labelled as sinners. Your HF blamed them for the design faults he introduced at creation as they only knew the difference between good and evil AFTER eating the fruit. The concept of Original Sin, on which the rest of your pyramid scheme is based, is only sustainable by a wilful ignorance of the shortcomings of the allegory of the fall and the logical convolutions needed to come to the doctrine.

He then, later, showed his inability to take the responsibility by drowning their descendants out of love for his creation. Were I to have gone down this route with my children, even if they had been a fault, I would have my door knocked on by social workers. A fine example he sets, though it would explain more recent atrocities committed by his followers, in his name. We have read the reasons claimed as justifications for the flood. Were all the newborns who died painfully be drowning ALSO guilty? They had not yet reached the age of accountability. Oh, I forgot the ever-so-certain doctrine of original sin. Sorry.

My children were never persecuted and punished for the fact that one of their ancestors listened to a snake. THEY did not listen to a snake, and if they had, the snake would have issued retribution there and then.

Your HF is an inadequate parent who, in Freud's terms, suffers badly from projection. He imbues us, in his mind, with the deficiencies he displays in abundance.

As an example for us to emulate - the Hague has hosted many a War Crimes tribunal. Were your HF to appear before one, I suspect that bashing babies to death on rocks MIGHT lead to his conviction and execution.

If god has given us over to our own desires and the resulting behaviour offensive to him, I humbly suggest that he was remiss in the testing phase of the creation process. Simple modelling would have thrown up the faults in his design. Once again, having screwed up, he expects us to carry the can.

I am so very glad that I shall never meet him, because an eternity, in either destination, knowing that such an entity exists would be hell.

Peace,

David

webmdave said...

Do you really believe that, having carefully read and studied the bible, none of us could have been put off church and xianity by a spiteful, quixotic, capricious, vengeful, immature, genocidal, murderous, irresponsible and, thankfully, non-existent god?

webmdave said...

Thanks for your quick respectful response. I don't see where you've violated the disclaimer. The reason for my comment is that we've had ministers visit us here previously. Shortly thereafter, we were inundated with people parroting the ministers' comments -- almost like the minister issued a "Sic 'em" on us. ;-)

Peace,
BP

webmdave said...

Hello, all. Thanks for your responses. I've been out shopping for shoes for my oldest son, and just got back. it's going to be kind of hard to respond to everyone, and I'm really not going to try. It won't be because I'm afraid, or you've backed me into a corner, or you really showed me. It's simply because even as I'm posting this, I just got another response!
I will say this, it takes faith to believe in a God. Yep, don't deny it. There are some days when I become so self-centered that I find it really hard to continue to believe. There are days I look at the world we live in and wonder why things are so bad. And yes, you cannot prove God. You are right, Mriana. There is evidence, but no proof. Just like you cannot disprove God, either. There is evidence, but no proof He doesn't exist as the Bible says.
That's when I do have to go back and read the Bible. And God doesn't promise to give us our daily bread. We are to pray for our daily bread. We (Americans) believe that in order to really live we need tvs, cars, ac, etc, but what we really need is daily bread--what it takes to get through each day. And God's promises are not that He's going to take care of us. I believe that Jesus (God's Son) was MURDERED. God's promises for us are because of Jesus' death there is hope for beyond this life, beyond this world, beyond everything that is broken and painful and hurtful and wrong.
But it comes down to faith. We all have faith in something. Many of you have chosen to have faith in yourselves and your own reasoning ability. I have chosen to put faith in the Bible. And I don't make that statement as one of superiority, just a statement that we all have faith in something.

webmdave said...

Jimmy,

You also only have faith in yourself and your reasoning ability. You have reasoned that your religion is more than a collection of Bronze Age and Dark Age myths. All we have is our brains, and how we use them determines our grasp of reality. Good luck with your choice.

webmdave said...

Where's the evidence? All the evidence points that Christ is just another Krishna, Mithra... all the way back to Amen Ra. Nothing more than another anthropomorphic version of the animistic sun worship. There is more evidence that Xianity is mere sun worship than there is evidence of an actual deity.

BTW, if your god concept can commit murder, what else can that concept do? Seem pretty barbaric, sadistic, a sociopathic to me.

I have chosen to put faith in the Bible.

Isn't that idol worship? Making an icon out of a book. What does a book do? Not much. I happen to like the Lorax better, but each his own.

webmdave said...

Xian guest: Not everything that is God's will happens

If we are talking about the same "God" i.e...the Xian biblegod, then said "God" is presumably "omniscient", and in which case, said "God" knows the future set of events, absolutely, in which case, it knew from the onset that its "will" would not be met.

'Sorry, but this puts ultimate responsibility on said "God".

Moreover, if said "God" knows the future, then this "God" also knows all of its *own* future choices, in which case, it cannot be the "personal" being that you and your bible insist it is. The "God" of the Christian philosophy can presumably exact its "mercy", "justice", and "blessings", etc., when/if it sees fit, yet, logic says that its "omniscience" makes this impossible, except for the cases in which it was predetermined.

IOW, you worship an automaton. Whoops!

He's revealed so much of it already, and He's made us all distinct with different passions and talents

Yes, yes!... we're all "made" distinct from one another, all having "different passions and talents", etc. It's just too bad that none of that matters in the end, as everyone falls into one of two categories: "saved" or "unsaved". People's intentions mean jack-sh*t to biblegod.

continues....I'm sorry your experience was so awful--it is very distressing as a pastor to see so many who are turned off of church and Christianity because of bad teaching and modeling

'Looks like you need to do more reading and less typing. That there are jerks associated with "Christianity" is only part of why most of us no longer believe.

webmdave said...

Xian guest: There was a reason why God "drowned" the world.

If you don't like the word "drowned", what word do you feel would better describe that act of ridding the planet of all human life, except for Captain Noah and his crew?

continues...You should read it.

Really? And just why do you assume that we haven't thought to do that already?

continues....Don't just listen to what someone else says about it. Read it for yourself.

I did. Hence my nonbelief.

webmdave said...

Xian guest....Just like you cannot disprove God, either

It's no one's job to "disprove" a negative. On the other hand, by employing some basic logic when analyzing the attributes that are assigned to the Christian biblegod, i.e.."omnibenevolent", "omnipresent", "omnipotent", "omniscient", etc., said "God" quickly becomes conceptually disproven....i.e..a philosophical contradiction. If you'd like some examples, I'll be happy to provide them.

webmdave said...

Can you disprove that Allah exists? What do think that proves?

webmdave said...

You know, Apollo, in the TOS episode of "Who Mourns For Adonis" was more merciful when his hand was about to crush the Enterprise. Of course whom did the gods destroy? No one, the humans destroyed the gods, even in Plato's Stepchildren. Not even Jack the Ripper defeated them. Then in TNG, the humans found the so-called god-head in "Justice". Picard was even said to be a god in "Who Watches the Watchers", yet he was more merciful and even admitted he was not a god. Oh and Lwaxana became a goddess herself in Q-In-Law and nearly chopped Q to pieces. It's all in the concept and it's all just stories. Some are better than others.

webmdave said...

Ack-Barf! Nope! Ah-yah hasn't struck me down dead and I've now said "Ack-barf!" three times tonight, make that four now- not all on this site. A human might before such a mythical being will.

webmdave said...

Alright, this is it, because it's late. For those who accuse me of not reading, let me remind you that I was posting about the original post, not the 100 plus comments after it, or the other posts on the website. I simply wanted to state my opinion on the matter, then let it go. I have since gotten 14 separate responses in the 6 hours or so since then (and a couple more while typing this). Some of these have been reasoned responses, some have been sarcastic mocking.
So here's what I'm going to do. I'm letting it go. I'm going to leave you guys to your website--it's what you want. For those who really want discussion, and not just hurling insults and sarcastic remarks, I can and will respond to them, when I have the time. But to all of you, the best of luck. I wish you well. Have a great night, and may all that you do find success. And I really mean that. Thanks for the discussion and the responses.

webmdave said...

Typical.

How DARE they challenge my authority! I am a PREACHER!!@!

If you wanted discussion, you got it. Sorry that discussion wasn't at pace you could handle nor seasoned just exactly the way your delicate discussion pallet desires.

May you find all the success you deserve in milking the deluded sheep while pretending that you are actually speaking on behalf of an fictional character from a poorly written, archaic storybook of myths.

And I sincerely mean that.

webmdave said...

Jim, you said,
"The parent/child argument is really good. It actually proves God. Most moms & dads (I am a proud dad of 3) are really mean to their kids early on. No to this and that, not letting kids do whatever they want, whenever they want."

The major weakness of your argument is that good parents do not drown all their children (except for one family). You do remember that flood story, don't you?

You also said, "BTW: There was a reason why God "drowned" the world. You should read it. " I have read it. They were evil, right? How the toddlers and babies were evil, however, escapes me. I cannot imagine what a small child could do that would convince me he/she was evil rather than simply immature. This is in fact why we don't try toddlers and babies in courts. We don't expect them to behave like responsible adults.

If your god exists, I'm afraid he is psychotic, and we are all in trouble. However, I don't see the slightest evidence beyond some ancient writings, and those writings are full of nonsense like 900 year-old men, magical trees, talking snakes, etc. That people actually believe in this stuff really blows me a way.