My Faith In God

My Faith In God

And My Lack of Faith In His Followers

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Growing up in a non-Christian household, I knew nothing about church until I was in sixth grade. When a friend of mine requested that I attend church with his family, I accepted. I enjoyed it. I liked the pastor. I liked the people. I loved the food. And I even learned about this guy named Jesus.

Growing up in a Jewish household, I was not raised religious. We would attend the synagogue to make it look good in front of the other family members who were very active. My parents did not practice regularly. They maintained a good image when it was required. So going to church wasn't something out of the ordinary. It was just something I did as a way to hang out with my friend and his family.

However, as I grew older, I enjoyed going more and more. Later in life, I was involved in a serious relationship with a girl who's family was very heavily involved in church. It was the first time I experienced two-faced hypocritical Christian behavior. Her dad would smack her mom around. Mom would typically walk around with bruises on her face and arms. But in front of the families, friends, neighbors, and coworkers, they had a great relationship. On Sunday, they would attend church, be the perfect Christian family, hang out at a bible study after, typically do lunch or brunch with several families, and Sunday evening dad would go home, go into his garage, work on his cars, drink, and start slapping mom around that night.

The girl I dated was very abusive, psychologically unfit and emotionally unstable. I found this out in our short relationship. I saw a lot of things about "Christians" that was a significant reason why I didn't step foot in a church for two years after I walked out of the relationship.

When I did start attending church, I would see the same people at bible studies in the bar on weekends. The ones preaching about not engaging in premarital sex would be sleeping with their girlfriends and multiple others. The same people who would preach about not drinking, doing drugs or engaging in "non-Christian" behavior would be doing just the opposite. I learned about the do as I say and not as I do behavior very early in life. I found it entertaining that someone could spend the whole week acting like a whore, sleeping around like a pig, and then go to church and preach about people doing that and how they shouldn't do it.

As I grew older, I saw more that I was disgusted by. I'd stop attending service for a couple of weeks for one simple reason - I would be tired after hanging out at the bar with my friends, drinking, playing music and having a good time. The ironic part is, the entire next week, I would typically not hear a word from the "Good practicing Christians" - They were too busy conforming to their social circles, hanging out with their bible thumping friends, and making sure nobody knew they'd been drunk at that very same bar the weekend before, flirting with and trying to pick up some girl in the bar they weren't dating or married to, and then would go about their lives, telling people what to not do. The ironic part? They'd spent the previous weekend doing just the opposite.

And as I learned the behavior of Christians, I would continue to see the same thing regardless of what church I went to, what service I attended (or didn't), what pastor was preaching, and who was telling the gospel according to the Bible. The minute a member stopped going? They stopped existing. Nobody would call. Nobody would talk about them (Unless to mention backsliding, them not being a devoted follower, or them being a "fly by night" Christian). And I've experienced the same behavior.

I've heard the excuses. "People are busy" and "People have a life too" but I've seen that the minute people go back to Church, they once again belong. They once again fit in. They once again find themselves with more friends than they know what to do with.

It's one reason among many why I have faith in God but I've lost faith in many of His followers.

For years, I have attended church, read my bible, prayed to God, had a one-on-one relationship with Him, and have been utterly disgusted with people I've met at church that I've once called friends. When I go? I'm part of who they are, what they do and how they live. When I stop going? I stop existing. It's the way church runs. It's the way that religion works. Religion is not the root of all evil. The people that follow it, practice it, and preach it are.

I have faith in God. I"ve just simply lost faith in many of His followers. He never leaves. He never fails. But the minute I stop attending church? His followers disappear like the blink of an eye.

I have attended church since I was 18 on a regular basis. Whether it's a holiday service. Whether it's a Sunday service. Whether it's just on an occasional day that I have a free moment. But one thing I've noticed that doesn't change, regardless of who I meet, where I go, or what building the church is in - As long as I go? I fit in. The minute I stop going?

I stop existing.

I know people are busy. I know people have a life. I know people have families. But what I find is most ironic is that the ones that don't attend church are the ones that never stop talking to me. The ones that don't practice or preach religion are the ones that keep calling. The ones that have children still manage to find time to talk to me. The ones who work three jobs still reach out to me and ask me how I'm doing. The ones that have a mental illness, disabilities and other things that they don't want to talk about managing to be my friend. It's one reason among many why I have faith in God but I've lost faith in many of His followers.

God has given me a good life. Many of His followers, including people I can't even call friends have given me nothing but heartache and pain.

I love God. I am just disgusted at many of His followers. And I've accepted it's time to move on. It's one reason why I don't make friends at church anymore. It's one reason why I don't take the time to attempt to talk to people I once knew. I know when they reach out every few weeks or months, it's to make them feel good about themselves, put on a good friend and tell their friends, "Yep. I talked to him. I checked up on him" and it makes them look good.

And that's one reason among many why I have my faith in God and I've lost faith in many of His followers.

Be real. Not fake. And if you can't do that? Disappear. Just like so many Christians have.

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48 Of The Best Catholic Mass Songs

Check out this list of some of my favorites!
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I love to sing.

But, I am very bad at singing. One thing I love about Mass is that I get to sing as loud and as terrible as I want, and that is a beautiful thing. I've compiled a list of what was originally going to be 10 of my favorite songs to sing at Mass, but as you can see, my list quickly became 5 times longer. Enjoy!


1. "All are Welcome"

A great reminder that we are to love our neighbors, no matter how different we are.

2. "All is Well With My Soul"

A refreshing reminder that God forgives our sins, and we are in good hands.

3."Amazing Grace"

A classic, powerful song that shows just how much grace means to us.

4. "Ave Maria"

A beautiful song honoring the Virgin Mary, a role model for all women.

5. "Be Not Afraid"

A reminder that no matter what we're going through, God is with us through it all.

6. "Blest Are They"

A guide on how to live out the Beatitudes.

7. "Canticle of the Sun"

A joyful tribute to God's Creation.

8. "Center of My Life"

A reminder to put God first, a reminder which is always necessary in this materialistic and egocentric world.

9. "Change Our Hearts"

An uplifting song reminding us that God saves even the most disobedient of his people if they give their hearts to Him.

10. "Christ Be Our Light"

A classic song that reminds us even in our darkest of days, Christ will light the path.

11. "City of God"

A song inspiring the building of God's Kingdom- something we should strive to do as Christians.

12. "Come Back to Me"

A song all about repentance and forgiveness- God is waiting for us with open arms every time we fail him.

13. "Companions on the Journey"

A reminder that we are not alone in our journey to spread the Good News, and we can work together to spread His Word.

14. "Eye Has Not Seen"

A reminder of the joy and happiness that awaits us in Heaven.

15. "Fly Like a Bird"

A comforting song reminding us that we will always be in God's care.

16. "For the Beauty of the Earth"

A song that captures the essence of how wondrous Creation is.

17. "Glory and Praise to Our God"

A song full of thanksgiving and praise to God who showers us with blessings every day.

18. "Go Out Go Out"

One of the favorites at my school- essentially a "pump up" song to go spread the Gospel.

19. "Here I am Lord"

A encouraging song, inspiring us to serve the Lord with all the talents we have.

20. "Here I am to Worship"

One of my all time favorite gathering songs that inspire me to give all the glory to God.

21. "How Can I Keep From Singing"

A reminder that God's works are wondrous and He is deserving of all our praise.

22. "How Great Thou Art"

A classic song inspiring us to look around and see God in everything and everyone.

23. "I Am the Bread of Life"

A comforting song telling us that if we live our lives in Christ, we will be reunited with God when death comes.

24. "I Know That My Redeemer Lives"

A song that tells us Jesus is alive, and He has redeemed us by his death.

25. "I Will Choose Christ"

A song inspiring us to recommit ourselves to Christ each and every day.

26. "In Every Age"

A reminder of the timelessness of God- He has always been there, and He will always be there for us.

27. "Jesus Christ Is Risen Today"

An Easter song which joyfully celebrates the Resurrection and the defeat of death.

28. "Lead Me Lord"


A reminder that if we seek God, He will lead us.

29. "Let There Be Peace On Earth"

Always a song that inspires us to act for justice and peace among all people.

30. "Like a Shepherd"

A reminder that God cares for us as his own because we are his own.

31. "Litany of Saints"

A beautiful song, often sang on Easter, in which we ask the Saints to intercede for us.

32. "Lord of All Hopefulness"

A prayer asking God for the strength to get through the day.

33. "Loving and Forgiving"

A reminder that God is always wanting to forgive us of our wrongdoing and heal our pain.

34. "Only a Shadow"

A reminder that we have seen just a glimpse of the love God has for us, and there is much more in store for us.

35. "On Eagle's Wings"

One of the saddest, yet happiest songs of all time- although we die, we will be raised up and be with Him forever.

36. "Our God is Here"

A reminder of the true presence of God in all things.

37. "Prayer of St. Francis"

A beautiful song that makes the prayer feel even more powerful.

38. "Rain Down"

A reminder of the endless love of God.

39. "Roll Away the Stone"

My favorite Easter song of all time. HE IS RISEN!

40. "Shepherd Me O God"

A popular song serving as a reminder to put our wants aside and follow God's will.

41. "Sing to the Mountains"

A song of thanksgiving to God for the abounding gifts he has bestowed on us.

42. "The Summons"

A great song for those who are discerning their calling.

43. "Ubi Caritas"

A song all about the love of Christ.

44. "Unless a Grain of Wheat"

A reminder that without God we have no life.

44. "We Are Called"

A call to service and justice.

45. "We Are Many Parts"

A reminder that although we are many people, we are all part of the Body of Christ, and we all need to work toward peace together.

46. "You Alone"

A reminder of how although we are undeserving, God still loves us and should be praised.

47. "You Are Mine"

God has called us each by name- He knows YOUR name, and you belong to Him.

48. "Your Grace Is Enough"

A necessary reminder that God IS more than enough for us! We don't need to be consumed with this world because we have HIM, and an eternity of happiness awaits.


Singing, although I am terrible at it, has really improved my prayer life. It could do the same for you!

Cover Image Credit: Allie Daniel

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Calling People Hateful Is Not A Productive Dialogue

Universities have become a breeding ground for intolerance.

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The political climate is rough. I don't enjoy commenting on it because of how controversial it has become. Every once in a while, however, I come across something that rubs me the wrong way.

As I was walking through campus the other day, chalked on the side of a cement wall was a phrase claiming the College Republican club on campus was a hate group. I don't know anything about the person who wrote this statement or anything about the College Republican group on campus, but I do know one thing: this statement is false.

Universities have become a breeding ground for intolerance.

Just because someone has a different opinion from you doesn't mean they are hateful. There is room for disagreement.

A psychology professor of mine once said something that impacted my perspective toward both political parties: "Both sides think they're right, but both sides can't be right." Both sides make decisions based on what they think is right. A person's opinion is not "wrong" if it differs from yours. It's just different.

It's important to recognize that people won't always agree with you, and that's okay. That doesn't give you the right to call them mean or hateful. It allows an entrance into discussion. Besides, if you want to persuade someone that your belief is more accurate, name calling won't get you anywhere. It will only cause the other person to view you as inconsiderate and unwilling to understand.

How can you convince someone to believe you when you won't listen to their perspective? How can you expect people to listen to you when you won't do the same in return? Not only is it important to recognize a person's beliefs, it's important to understand why they believe what they do.

In order for people to engage in productive dialogue, both sides need to listen to each other and respect each other. Tossing labels around progresses nowhere and doesn't benefit anyone.

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