Does church help you to become the sort of person you’d pick to be stuck on a desert island with?

When I first joined the Greek Orthodox Church in 1990 I argued the finer points of theology and church history with my long-suffering evangelical mother and sisters. (Dad was spared, having died in 1984.) I argued as if any church I happened to join was ipso-facto the gatekeeper to heaven. I argued in a way that implied that a human could find THE TRUTH and judge others by it. I argued in a way that denied that our brains process what we hear and see and touch and, therefore, all information is … [Read more...]

The Evangelical FAIL on Mental Health: 100+ of my FB Friends Tell Their Shockingly Poignant Stories

Pastors, teachers, mothers, fathers, grandparents, psychologists, counselors-- everyone: ignore these unedited shockingly poignant stories of the failure of Christians to address mental health issues at your peril. On December 23, I posted this question on my FB page. Please read the revealing responses that follow. Then "like" my FB page and join us in our many ongoing robust discussions you will only find on my page...Is Mental Illness Caused By "Unrepentant Sin"? How Did … [Read more...]

Is Mental Illness Caused By “Unrepentant Sin”? How Did Christians Help or Worsen Your Mental Health Problems?

Is mental illness caused by "Unrepentant Sin"? How did Christians help or worsen your mental health problems? This Christmastime share your story on my Facebook Page.My father Francis Schaeffer suffered from depression and I've also felt the dark night of the soul from time to time. How about you? Did anyone help you? In our evangelical family depression was treated as a "spiritual problem" or a "lack of faith." We didn't believe in professional mental health care. We were more likely to … [Read more...]

“I am waiting to die. I am not hopeless, just completely ignorant about what to do spiritually” 4 Ex-Fundamentalists Tell Me Their Stories

"I am waiting to die. I am not hopeless, just completely ignorant about what to do spiritually and existentially, living a life lived from my whole heart and in my sense of what it means to live in Christ." That's a quote from one of my readers. I asked my Facebook family for their stories of deliverance from fundamentalism. I told them they would be shared on my blog. Here are a few they posted on my FB Page. These stories move me deeply: ...Read more... Danna Baker W … [Read more...]

Embracing paradox helped me discover that religion is a neurological disorder for which faith is the only cure

My kaleidoscopic beliefs are fickle and motivated by desire, wishful thinking, and wanting to fit in with my family and community and to make my marriage work. My dogmatic declarations of faith once provided status, ego-stroking power over others and a much better income than I’ve ever earned since fleeing the evangelical machine. Certainty made things simple, gave me an answer to every question and paid the bills.With the acceptance of paradox came a new and blessed uncertainty that began t … [Read more...]

To Some Atheists and Christians Alike the Phrase “I’m an atheist who believes in God” is ‘Illogical’ and ‘Impossible’ because they are Narrow-Minded Literalists

Why do you think so many atheists seem so evangelistic? They even sometimes speak of their moment of “de-conversion” as a flip-side to the so-called born again experience. If life teaches us anything it's that certainty is overrated.The real life-lessons aren't found in intellectual theories much less in theology, but in seeing life through the lens of those we love most. For instance, I actually experienced brief and perfect instants when death lost its sting.Being with my granddaughter … [Read more...]

Ironically this authentic vibrant refuge was across the street from the hate factory “church” Mars Hill Church

Last night I sang children’s songs with a group of children and adults with Intellectual disability with significantly impaired cognitive functioning and deficits. In other words: I was in a real church helping outcasts. Ironically this authentic vibrant refuge was across the street from the hate factory “church” Mars Hill Church, that until recently was led by Mark Driscoll.We were gathered at the Open Gathering Church. Some of us were in wheelchairs and electric carts. The service reminded me o … [Read more...]

“This is what being raised in the southern Bible belt will do to you…If it is ok, I will share my head for the first time to anyone”

NOTE: If you come from an evangelical background and feel anguish you are not alone. Here's proof! I get 20-30 emails and FB messages a day from readers of my new book expressing anguish over their religious backgrounds. I answer all of them. I learn more from my readers than they learn from me. Here's one exchange I found very moving. (Printed here by permission, name changed.) Take hope. Sat, Aug 16, 2014 12:26 pmFrank: It is such a relief to get to share my head with someone. I am not … [Read more...]


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