I was thinking about some things today. My faith is a constant. Tonight, we went to a good friend's house. His uncle and aunt and cousins were there, too. They're so nice. So nice! Very hospitable and caring and loving. Great people. What do I believe? Well, I believe that love is the most important feeling that we can experience as humans. I believe that Jesus gave us a perfect example of love. But, somehow, I believe that (more than likely) my good friend and his family are going to be tormented forever in Hell because they don't believe Jesus to be the only way to salvation. How can this be? They just showed us sincere love and kindness. I don't understand... And why should I? I'm a mere human. I don't understand God's ways. I can't. I want to understand some things. But I just don't.
I was also thinking about something I read recently in Genesis. There's a scene when Abraham is challenging God when God was going to destroy Sodom. I don't know what I was thinking... Maybe my question was if I could challenge God in the same way. And I know I was thinking about Atheism today. Today's Festivus and that's the secular holiday that a lot of Atheists celebrate in leu of Christmas. What would I challenge God on? I'm only a human, I know. Maybe, why is it that God made us all knowing that some are not going to love him back. I mean, this is the question that everyone asks. Why doesn't God just come down to Earth and say, "Hey! Here I am! I'm real!". I know he did do that with Jesus. Is it all up to us and our faith? Really, I think it is wise for me to seriously challenge my faith. I don't want to believe something that's fake. I want it to be real. And if it's real, I want my faith to be 100%, not this half-way shit that I've been doing. There's some questions that will always be there. Like, why are there some people that have really shitty lives? Or why are kids born in houses with really shitty parents? Pain. Suffering. Both are huge. Pain sucks. Suffering sucks. Heartache sucks. Yet, people still go through those things. And God loves them. Why doesn't he heal them? I don't know...
I'll read the Bible. Seriously and critically. The Bible should be able to answer my questions. I should be able to tell if it's divine. God's word. Or bullshit. Really, I've been conditioned not to question anything about my faith. I was brought up with the saying, "God said it, that settles it". The statement was born from the original statement, "God said it, I believe it, that settles it". That wasn't good enough. The logic is that, it doesn't matter if I believe it or not, it's still true. It's also assuming that the Bible is God's word, that it's inspired, holy, perfect and should be taken completely literal. "God said it, that settles it".
I shouldn't question it. Because God said it and that settles it. I'm going to Hell if I don't believe it. I don't want Hell. I really don't. I'm still scared about Hell.
Here's what I think now. I think that if God is real, and God loves, and I was made in his image, then he made me a thinking person. He made me knowing that I would have curiosity in me. He made me knowing that I have a brain that is aware. I exist. I can make decisions. If God made us, and placed us in this existence because he longs for love just like I do, then he wants my love just like I want love. He doesn't want someone programed to love. He wants real love. Love from someone who knows him. Love that's real. If God exists, then that's what I think he wants. Right now, my love is programed. I'm 32 years old and I have an inherited faith.
I have so many issues that I'm working out with my faith, but I have to start somewhere. I think the Bible is a good place to begin. The church claims it's inerrant, it's perfect, it's literal. I disagree. I think it's with errors. It's a compilation of a bunch of books written by a bunch of different people. Key word, "people". it's going to have errors. It's going to be flawed. Also, God didn't decide what's in the Bible, people did. People who probably had an agenda. People who were probably more concerned about money and power than they were about God. That's an assumption on my side. I wasn't there (obviously) when the early church decided what goes in the Bible and what doesn't. I really don't know much about how the Bible was put together--something I do want to study.
Anyway, I'll read. I'll look. I'll keep my ears open. I'll have an open mind, as open as I can.