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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 1: Mon Sep 17, 2007 3:47 pm
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How Many Got Saved by Your Testimony and Lifestyle?

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JamesBrown wrote:
Right now I can think of ten people who became Christians because of my testimony and personal witness.


This quote gave me the idea for this thread. How many of y'all can relate to this? I lived a lifestyle free of drugs, alcohol, smoking, stealing, and violence in which many friends of mine that I grew up with later got saved. Many of them called me, or came and visited me to share the "great news". They would tell me how I was always someone that they could depend on, always someone that they could talk to, and that they thanked God for me being in their lives. That without me, they would have never seen the light.

I also remember this experience I had with this lady that lived across the street from me. After a life of alcoholism, frequent run-ins with the law, and treating you husband and step-son (one of my best friends at the time) like garbage, she eventually succumbed to cirrhosis of the liver and was on her death bed. I went and talked to her the morning right before she died, and witnessed to her. Telling her all about heaven and how she'll be able to walk again there. That she would have no more pain and suffering and be loved. We even bowed and said the lord's prayer, and accepted Jesus as her savior. I felt that the lord that day had used me in a powerful way.

To this day when these same friends call me, and find out that I'm now atheist, they really trip out. They start trying to quote scripture to me, and convince me of the same things I used to TELL THEM back in the day (ironic huh?).

Now in retrospect, I feel kind of guilty, but I guess we live and learn huh?

How many others on here, have similar experiences? Do you also feel the same guilt that I am experiencing?

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 2: Mon Sep 17, 2007 5:57 pm
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It's hard to say how many lives I have influenced in my 30+ years as a Christian. I attended many children's camps as a leader, I taught Sunday School, I also led cell groups. I talked to people at work about my beliefs from time to time. I got my friends to come along to church events. But all those kids and workmates I have never seen again, so who knows whether they are Christians or not and whether any thing I ever said made a difference. It's also possible some might have left the faith because of me. Who knows.

It's my two kids I have had the most influence on. They have both become Christians, although my daughter (13) has her doubts. My son (11) seems to have a very strong faith. It does trouble me when I think that the beliefs I passed on to them are false. That I have indoctronated them since birth and they are completely immersed in the Christian culture (well when they're at their mother's place anyway). But yet, I do not want to risk destroying their faith by telling them what I now believe (or should I say don't believe). I know how hard it is to lose your faith and my son has such a strong faith. I don't want to put him in the position I was in. Maybe when he's older and has more doubts, yes, but not right now. What do you do? Neutral

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 3: Mon Sep 17, 2007 7:34 pm
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I used to run a ministry to the deaf. Fortunately, it was not very successful, so I have little to feel guilty about on that account. I baptized others who were friends and acquaintances, and some I know are still strong in the faith. It is, however, their decision to stay. I in no way coerced them or hoodwinked them into Christianity, so I cannot feel bad that they do not leave.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 4: Tue Sep 18, 2007 5:40 am
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OnceConvinced wrote:

It's my two kids I have had the most influence on. They have both become Christians, although my daughter (13) has her doubts. My son (11) seems to have a very strong faith. It does trouble me when I think that the beliefs I passed on to them are false. That I have indoctronated them since birth and they are completely immersed in the Christian culture (well when they're at their mother's place anyway). But yet, I do not want to risk destroying their faith by telling them what I now believe (or should I say don't believe). I know how hard it is to lose your faith and my son has such a strong faith. I don't want to put him in the position I was in. Maybe when he's older and has more doubts, yes, but not right now. What do you do? Neutral


That is an interesting one. All my children have grown up with little religious indoctrination and an encouragement to think critically. My son, now 16, is not shy about professing his atheism yet is volubly defensive of his friends who are christian. He describes Dawkins as 'intolerant' and 'insulting'.

Your children are still in the 'mythic' stage of concious development (or at least the 11 year old is). Early teen sees the next fulchrum to 'vision/logic' where the ability to 'think about thinking' emerges. It is then when the questions will come. I can only suggest honesty. Talk to him about the journey you have travelled so far and that your are still travelling.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 5: Tue Sep 18, 2007 3:32 pm
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I Have been a Christian and a recovering Christian.
I do remember my atheist days but the concepts I now hold made me realize many years ago that I wasn't even aware of most of the problems and was an atheist because of the concept drilled in from childhood that God exists.
I remember having an experience that God was present and so natural that we didn't realized it.
It was the early 70's and I might have been stoned.
Telling someone on their death bed that they are ready for a journey doesn't seem a lie.
Even if there is no God they had peace. If there is a judgement then God should understand. He/She should be pretty bright.
I found in Christianity the same thing I found in Hebrew thinking.
Loving God and loving others were the same thing.
The rest is commentary?
I have been told by people that I have and do influence them but I am not sure how it always goes.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 6: Tue Sep 18, 2007 4:23 pm
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bernee51 wrote:
That is an interesting one. All my children have grown up with little religious indoctrination and an encouragement to think critically. My son, now 16, is not shy about professing his atheism yet is volubly defensive of his friends who are christian. He describes Dawkins as 'intolerant' and 'insulting'.

Your children are still in the 'mythic' stage of concious development (or at least the 11 year old is). Early teen sees the next fulchrum to 'vision/logic' where the ability to 'think about thinking' emerges. It is then when the questions will come. I can only suggest honesty. Talk to him about the journey you have travelled so far and that your are still travelling.


Yes, I definitely don't want to lie to them and claim I'm still a Christian. My son asked me the other day why I didn't go to church any more. I didn't want to say I was no longer a Christian, so told him other reasons instead (which were valid reasons). One of them being I was too lazy to get up on a Sunday morning (which was also true).

One reason I haven't just come out and said "I'm a ex-christian now" is that it would create a whole lot of sadness and worry for my elderly parents. It would also have my mother continually nagging and trying to get me to come to church, and my dad continually preaching. I'd rather avoid the aggravation. Also my ex-wife may try to create difficulties when it comes to me seeing the kids. At the moment I'm playing it by ear.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 7: Tue Sep 18, 2007 6:23 pm
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OnceConvinced wrote:
Yes, I definitely don't want to lie to them and claim I'm still a Christian. My son asked me the other day why I didn't go to church any more. I didn't want to say I was no longer a Christian, so told him other reasons instead (which were valid reasons). One of them being I was too lazy to get up on a Sunday morning (which was also true).
You may not be telling a direct untruth, but you are trying to deceive them. Your kids will see through it soon enough, if they have not already. They know that your reasons are not valid, if examined. If you were a genuine Christian, would you be too lazy to get up on Sunday morning? Would you skip Sunday morning and go Sunday evening instead? Wouldn't you have Bible reading and prayer at home too? By not being honest with them, they will just see you as a hypocrite.

OnceConvinced wrote:
One reason I haven't just come out and said "I'm a ex-christian now" is that it would create a whole lot of sadness and worry for my elderly parents. It would also have my mother continually nagging and trying to get me to come to church, and my dad continually preaching. I'd rather avoid the aggravation.
Some Christians can be a real pain about these things can't they? Do you think that your children would understand that your parents are closed minded, so it might be best not to discuss your lack of faith with them?

OnceConvinced wrote:
Also my ex-wife may try to create difficulties when it comes to me seeing the kids. At the moment I'm playing it by ear.
Anti-atheist bigotry can be a problem.
Have a look at [urlhttp://www.positiveatheism.org/]Positive Atheism[/url].

Here is an editorial, Anti-Atheist Bigotry: Atheists Can't Be Singled Out in a Crowd

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 8: Fri Jul 02, 2010 5:56 pm
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None I would say. I wasnt particularly the type to hand out my religion and label myself like the common cold.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 9: Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:07 pm
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Re: How Many Got Saved by Your Testimony and Lifestyle?

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wrekk wrote:
JamesBrown wrote:
Right now I can think of ten people who became Christians because of my testimony and personal witness.


This quote gave me the idea for this thread. How many of y'all can relate to this? I lived a lifestyle free of drugs, alcohol, smoking, stealing, and violence in which many friends of mine that I grew up with later got saved. Many of them called me, or came and visited me to share the "great news". They would tell me how I was always someone that they could depend on, always someone that they could talk to, and that they thanked God for me being in their lives. That without me, they would have never seen the light.

I also remember this experience I had with this lady that lived across the street from me. After a life of alcoholism, frequent run-ins with the law, and treating you husband and step-son (one of my best friends at the time) like garbage, she eventually succumbed to cirrhosis of the liver and was on her death bed. I went and talked to her the morning right before she died, and witnessed to her. Telling her all about heaven and how she'll be able to walk again there. That she would have no more pain and suffering and be loved. We even bowed and said the lord's prayer, and accepted Jesus as her savior. I felt that the lord that day had used me in a powerful way.

To this day when these same friends call me, and find out that I'm now atheist, they really trip out. They start trying to quote scripture to me, and convince me of the same things I used to TELL THEM back in the day (ironic huh?).

Now in retrospect, I feel kind of guilty, but I guess we live and learn huh?

How many others on here, have similar experiences? Do you also feel the same guilt that I am experiencing?


Since perception is reality your perception that it was Jesus who would help you became your reality so there's nothing to feel guilty about.

I remember when I was a Christian how intimidated I felt by this guy who had overcome drug addiction when he became a Muslim. Jesus is the only one who can deliver, I thought. So the idea of Islam delivering someone from drugs, well, as a christian I had to find fault with that. But even though I could find fault with it, ridicule it, dismiss it and even deny it, I could not change the reality in that man's life.

What you needed then was what you needed then and what you have now is what you have now. And that's that.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 10: Thu Jan 06, 2011 4:34 pm
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McCulloch wrote:
OnceConvinced wrote:
Yes, I definitely don't want to lie to them and claim I'm still a Christian. My son asked me the other day why I didn't go to church any more. I didn't want to say I was no longer a Christian, so told him other reasons instead (which were valid reasons). One of them being I was too lazy to get up on a Sunday morning (which was also true).
You may not be telling a direct untruth, but you are trying to deceive them. Your kids will see through it soon enough, if they have not already. They know that your reasons are not valid, if examined. If you were a genuine Christian, would you be too lazy to get up on Sunday morning? Would you skip Sunday morning and go Sunday evening instead? Wouldn't you have Bible reading and prayer at home too? By not being honest with them, they will just see you as a hypocrite.

OnceConvinced wrote:
One reason I haven't just come out and said "I'm a ex-christian now" is that it would create a whole lot of sadness and worry for my elderly parents. It would also have my mother continually nagging and trying to get me to come to church, and my dad continually preaching. I'd rather avoid the aggravation.
Some Christians can be a real pain about these things can't they? Do you think that your children would understand that your parents are closed minded, so it might be best not to discuss your lack of faith with them?

OnceConvinced wrote:
Also my ex-wife may try to create difficulties when it comes to me seeing the kids. At the moment I'm playing it by ear.
Anti-atheist bigotry can be a problem.
Have a look at [urlhttp://www.positiveatheism.org/]Positive Atheism[/url].

Here is an editorial, Anti-Atheist Bigotry: Atheists Can't Be Singled Out in a Crowd


Yes, honesty is the best policy.Yes, you have your reasons for not going to church but no, you are not ready to discuss them. Nothing else really needs to be said.

Being an atheist doesn't mean you can't look deep within your mind for serenity. You have to take the stress off yourself and let go of worrying about what other people will think. You can't stop people from thinking so why stress yourself out trying to control what you cannot control?

Relax. Make peace with yourself and the decisions you have made for yourself. Then you will be better equipped to help your children deal with the decisions they will one day have to make. Think about it. what led you from Christianity to atheism? Was it because somebody came up with the magical words or was it because in your own mind you came to see Christianity for what it really is?

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