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Old 12-26-2010, 10:36 PM  
Carolina Jeep Girl
Sarahdactyl's Avatar

Charlotte, North Carolina
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Sorry for the late replies guys! I appreciate y'alls posts very much. They are very encouraging.

Originally Posted by TDmaster View Post
Sarah, speaking as a new member to this thread, I feel you bring such a truth and honesty to your yearning to find answers. I think there are many, many people exactly like you! Other posters have touched upon looking at everything in this world with an open mind and I would second that.

I want to first say that I am a Christian, and I know what that means and it has nothing to do with religion - it simply means that I am a Christ Follower, a disciple of Jesus - that I have a personal relationship with God. It is not my intent to preach to or proselytize you in any way...but I do want to add to the thoughts that have been expressed in this thread for you or any other "seekers" that may be reading.

I completely agree with this! I wish my Mom could see t that way. Your believe it is your personal relationship with god that counts, not your relationship with a church.

God clearly states He has revealed Himself to mankind so that ALL may come to know Him:
His first revelation is in His very creation. As you have pointed out, you can't imagine the wonder and complexity of the human body, the galaxies, the atom, the earth, the sun. These things reveal God as a designer behind the design. I am a trained scientist, and I believe you can't be a real scientist and not see or experience the hand of God in any area of His creation that we can observe.

What kind of science did you study? The hand of God is just completely amazing. As I study and I am filled with wonder. How perfect are system works, yet fragile we are once one thing is slightly affected!

Secondly, God has revealed Himself in the written Word, the Bible, so reading His word is the best thing any true seeker could possible do. You seem to know this instinctively already.

Third, God revealed Himself in the Flesh, Jesus the Christ. Through these three Revelations man(woman) is without excuse to not know Him IF they truly want to know Him.

My final thought is to give you something that might help you in your endeavor to read the Bible and search for answers...The Bible is Unique in its Continuity throughout all 66 books (Old and New Testaments). There is one very good contemporary apologist, Josh McDowell, that offers these cogent points about the Bible:
1. Over a long period of time
a. About 1600 years
b. A span of 40 generations
2. By approximately 40 authors from every walk of life
a. Moses, political leader trained in the universities of Egypt
b. Peter, fisherman
c. Amos, herdsman
d. Joshua, military general
e. Nehemiah, cup bearer to the king of Persia
f. Daniel, prime minister in the courts of Babylon
g. Luke, physician
h. Solomon, philosopher king
i. Matthew, tax collector
j. Paul, rabbi and tentmaker
3. In different places
a. Moses in the wilderness
b. Jeremiah in a dungeon
c. Daniel on a hillside, and in a palace
d. Paul inside prison walls
e. Luke while traveling
f. John in exile on the isle of Patmos
g. Others in the rigors of a military campaign
4. At different times
a. David in times of war
b. Solomon in times of peace
5. During different moods
a. Some writing from the heights of joy
b. Others from the depths of sorrow and despair
6. On three continents: Asia, Africa, Europe
7. In three languages: Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek
8. With subject matter involving hundreds of controversial topics,
such as:
a. The origin of man and the universe
b. The nature of God
c. The nature of man, sin, and man's redemption

1. For example:
a. "The Paradise Lost of the book of Genesis becomes the
Paradise Regained of Revelation."
b. "Whereas the gate to the Tree of Life is closed in Genesis,
it is opened forevermore in Revelation."

I have taken this list from Josh's book, "Evidence that Demands a Verdict"

I would add that the main underlying theme throughout the entire Bible is Gods plan for the redemption of mankind.

I would encourage you to look for this theme and continuity in each and every book of the Bible you read. Here is a general guideline for what you might find or look for as you read, ask questions and explore God's written revelation: Jesus is in Every Book of the Bible

?In Genesis, Jesus Christ is the seed of the woman.
?In Exodus, He is the passover lamb.
?In Leviticus, He is our high priest.
?In Numbers, He is the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night.
?In Deuteronomy, He is the prophet like unto Moses.
?In Joshua, He is the captain of our salvation.
?In Judges, He is our judge and lawgiver.
?In Ruth, He is our kinsman redeemer.
?In 1st and 2nd Samuel, He is our trusted prophet.
?In Kings and Chronicles, He is our reigning king.
?In Ezra, He is the rebuilder of the broken down walls of human life.
?In Esther, He is our Mordecai.
?In Job, He is our ever-living redeemer.
?In Psalms, He is our shepherd.
?In Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, He is our wisdom.
?In the Song of Solomon, He is the loving bridegroom.
?In Isaiah, He is the prince of peace.
?In Jeremiah, He is the righteous branch.
?In Lamentations, He is our weeping prophet.
?In Ezekiel, He is the wonderful four-faced man.
?In Daniel, He is the forth man in life's "fiery furnace."
?In Hosea, He is the faithful husband, forever married to the backslider.
?In Joel, He is the baptizer with the Holy Ghost and fire.
?In Amos, He is our burden-bearer.
?In Obadiah, He is the mighty to save.
?In Jonah, He is our great foreign missionary.
?In Micah, He is the messenger of beautiful feet.
?In Nahum, He is the avenger of God's elect.
?In Habakkuk, he is God's evangelist, crying, "revive thy work in the midst of the years."
?In Zephaniah, He is our Saviour.
?In Haggai, He is the restorer of God's lost heritage.
?In Zechariah, He is the fountain opened up in the house of David for sin and uncleanness.
?In Malachi, He is the Sun of Righteousness, rising with healing in His wings.
?In Matthew, He is King of the Jews.
?In Mark, He is the Servant.
?In Luke, He is the Son of Man, feeling what you feel.
?In John, He is the Son of God.
?In Acts, He is the Savior of the world.
?In Romans, He is the righteousness of God.
?In I Corinthians, He is the Rock that followed Israel.
?In II Corinthians, He is the Triumphant One, giving victory.
?In Galatians, He is your liberty; He sets you free.
?In Ephesians, He is Head of the Church.
?In Philippians, He is your joy.
?In Colossians, He is your completeness.
?In 1st and 2nd Thessalonians, He is your hope.
?In I Timothy, He is your faith.
?In II Timothy, He is your stability.
?In Philemon, He is your Benefactor.
?In Titus, He is truth.
?In Hebrews, He is your perfection.
?In James, he is the Power behind your faith.
?In I Peter, He is your example.
?In II Peter, He is your purity.
?In I John, He is your life.
?In II John, He is your pattern.
?In III John, He is your motivation.
?In Jude, He is the foundation of your faith.
?In Revelation, He is your coming King.

Noted in my bible I now have more material to relate to.

So, God Bless you Sarah in the midst of your search for answers and may the Holy Spirt guide you to a real and lasting relationship with God through His Son, Jesus.
Thank you so much for your input and putting your time into a reply. I very much appreciate it. My bible is going to be filled with stick note tabs before I know it! Blessed be!

Originally Posted by gotmud
I have read all of this thread and I hope you realize you are not alone in this search for God. Several others have quoted the bible and are much more versed than I but I do know that if you are truely searching for God, you WILL find Him.

Thank you, I believe I will

Keep reading and studying your bible and keep an open mind and things will begin to make sense to you as God only puts on our shoulders no more than what we can stand and He is always there to catch us should we fall.
Thanks to y'all I know I am not alone. I know he challenges us and I will stand though it. I will keep reading and searching Thank you for taking the time to reply

Nothing is going to stop me unless it's Divine Intervention.
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Old 12-28-2010, 11:23 PM  
Junior Member

El Centro, CA
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 9 | Kudos: +10
A great read...

Hello Saradactyl,

This post caught my eye because I too had had some trouble or struggles with Christianity. I grew up going to church, my grandpa was a preacher at a baptist church and the only reasons that I had for being a Christian was that it "ran in the family" and I thought it was good morally. I started doubting my faith about 2 years ago and it began a rough time in my life. I would think about there even being a possibility of knowing if there even was a god at all. I pondered the idea of being in a situation where I knew of my impending death and the lack of certainty I would have of "what happens next?" At that time I was too scared to look into any of my questions forbear of having my world turned upside down and I did not want to tell anyone else for fear of *ruining* their faith. Finally, due to some events in my life I turned to a friend who told me that he had been through some similar doubts and he loaned me a book called, "I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist." I think that the title is a bit misleading at first but it applies to any person of any level of faith as well, as the title clearly states, as those without any faith at all. The book has truly changed my life by giving my answers to some very serious questions that are often unanswered in church. I would highly recommend that you give it a read if you want the facts about Christianity written by two proven Christian thinkers.

May God bless you through your struggles as much or more than I have been blessed by my period of doubt.

Most sincerely,

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Old 01-18-2011, 11:03 PM  
Junior Member

Tallahassee, Florida
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 6 | Kudos: +10
My advice is this: Ask questions and search for answers. If you do that, you will find what you're looking for.
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Old 01-19-2011, 05:40 AM  
Senior Member

Greenville, SC
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 1,141 | Kudos: +188
Sarah, Growing up, my family tried to get me to go to church and all that stuff. I got to be driving age and stopped going to church and I had never really found christ. I didn't really seek him either. I was partying and all that stuff. Got a little older, got married. All the while my parent's would drop hints every now and then. By the way, my wife was also a Christian brought up in a Christian household. She was struggling a little at this point in her life too. None of my friends were really Christian.

After getting married I sort of tried a little, but I was always very logical in my thaughts which I think made things difficult for me. "Logic" and "FAITH" don't seem to go together well. I felt that if there was a god I would be fine because of my values and ethics. My dad would say "you will know when.."

He was right. I went through a series of events in my life (including my fathers death) which left me quite devastated. I had a painful knot in my gut for like a week and a half that I could not get rid of. One day, on my way to drop off some trash in my truck, trying to deal with this pain in my gut. As a last resort I just said out loud that I couldn't take it anymore and if there is a god please help me. At that very second the pain was gone and at that point I was a changed person. It was pretty crazy stuff.
Just keep in mind if you need him he will be there but you will have to ask. Then commit.

I don't tell that story often.
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Old 02-23-2011, 08:41 AM  
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Hillman's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 318 | Kudos: +31

I've been following your thread and the responses.
Be comforted in the fact that you are asking valid and probing questions. That is evidence of the prevenient grace of the Holy Spirit working in you. No matter what you think or have been told, NO ONE immediately understandably believes all that they are going to eventually believe (in reference to their faith). Building a faith from facts is hard work!, although it can be done. Our worldly nature convinces us to not trust our hearts and to struggle with the truth. When it comes to one's faith, or lack of, everyone has a story and all of the stories are different. That in itself proves that faith is based in an individual relationship between a person and God. Everyone else's stories are just that....their stories. Your story, and relationship, is and will always be different. Use the "other" stories as guidance but rely on what you know is in your heart to establish and grow your relationship with God.

I am often confronted by others who doubt whether they have a "real and meaningful" relationship with God. When objectively considered there is a simple answer. Since we know, via scripture, that the ability or opportunity to believe is a gift of the Holy Spirit, that would mean ones desire to know God better is not of ones self but of the Spirit. Again, scripture being the guide, says that "no one, yes, no one" seeks God on their own. Simply stated, the existence of salient, probing questions, about God, by an individual, is proof of the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit. Without this "regenerative work" the flesh will only seek worldly satisfactions and rejection of God's truth. With that being said, a person can be intellectually curious about God and ask salient questions but the questions themselves will be telling. Do they reveal an origin of the heart and a genuine attempt to better understand or do they reveal a hardened heart that seeks to damage, convict, and reject truth?

You've gotten a lot of good responses to your questions but remember, in relationship to your growing faith, the past is never too bad and the present is never too good. It's not about what you do..it's about who you do it for. There's a point in every believers life where they just give up trying to figure everything out in reference to God. A true believer comes to a point where they say, "OK, God, I don't know what to do or how to do what I don't know, but I am going allow your Spirit to lead me as I struggle along this new path. Please affirm me when I doubt, lift me when I a fall, and lead me to an understanding that I can grow from and share.". Those aren't the exact words everyone will use but the simple act of giving in to the guidance of the Holy Spirit and accepting that you need the guidance is the beginning of a "walk" you'll never forget. Some of us do it differently, some of us do it better, some of us do it loudly, some of us do it quietly, some of us do it all of the time and some of us do it only some of the time. In essence, all believers do it differently, but we DO IT!

"Doing it" is a life long journey. We believers have the opportunity "do it" however we want to but once we "know" God we cannot not do it. Think of it this way. You are someones daughter....you will always be that person's daughter. You have the choice to be a good daughter or a bad daughter...either way it is your choice, but you are still their daughter. The same holds true for believers. We either choose to be good at it or we don't, but we remain believers. What God starts in us He finishes! All this leads to a discussion on sanctification but that'll have to be at another time.

Any way, you are in the company of believers. The question now is what are you going to do with it (the gift).

I'll be honored to help in any way you'll allow me to.

A nobody telling everybody about Somebody.
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Old 11-16-2012, 02:40 PM  
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teaberryeagle's Avatar

Richmond, VA
Join Date: Sep 2010
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this will give you chills:

after a few of the usual sunday evening hymns,

the church's pastor slowly stood up,

walked over to the pulpit and,

before he gave his sermon for the evening,

he briefly introduced a guest minister

who was in the service that evening.

in the introduction, the pastor told the congregation that the guest minister was

one of his dearest childhood friends and that he wanted him to have a few moments

to greet the church and share whatever he felt would be appropriate for the service .

with that, an elderly man stepped up to the pulpit and began to speak.

'a father, his son, and friend of his son were
sailing off
the pacific coast ' he began.
'when a fast approaching storm blocked any
attempt to get back to the shore....

the waves were so high, that even though the
father was an experienced sailor, he could not
keep the boat upright and the three were swept
into the ocean as the boat capsized.'

the old man hesitated for a moment,
making eye contact with two teenagers who were,
for the first time since the service began,
looking somewhat interested in his story.

the aged minister continued with his story,
'grabbing a rescue line, the father had to make the most excruciating decision of his life: To which boy would he
throw the other end of the life line.
He only had seconds to make the decision.
The father knew that his son was a christian and he ,
also, knew that his son's friend was not.
The agony of his decision could not be matched by the
torrent of waves.

as the father yelled out, 'i love you, son!'
he threw out the life line to his son's friend.
By the time the father had pulled the friend back to the capsized
boat, his son had disappeared beneath the raging swells
into the black of night.

His body was never recovered.

by this time, the two teenagers were sitting up
straight in the pew, anxiously waiting for the next words to come
out of the old minister's mouth.

'the father,' he continued, 'knew his son would
step into eternity with jesus and he could not
bear the thought of his son's friend stepping into an eternity without
jesus.. Therefore, he sacrificed his son to save the son's friend. '

how great is the love of god that he should do the same for us..
Our heavenly father sacrificed his only begotten son that we could be saved....
I urge you to accept his offer to rescue you and take a hold of the life line
he is throwing out to you in this service.'

with that, the old man turned and sat back down in his chair as silence
filled the room.

The pastor again walked slowly to the pulpit and
delivered a brief sermon with an invitation at the end. However, no one responded to the appeal.

within minutes after the service ended, the two
teenagers were at the old man's side.

'that was a nice story,' politely stated one of
them, 'but i don't think it was very realistic for a father to give up his
only son's life in hopes that the other boy would become a christian.'

'well, you've got a point there,' the old man replied,
glancing down at his worn bible. A big smile broadened his narrow face..
He once again looked up at the boys and said, 'it sure isn't very realistic,
is it? But, i'm standing here today to tell you that story gives me a
glimpse of what it must have been like for god to give up his son for me.

you see...

i was that father and your pastor is my son's friend.'

"In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." - A. Einstein

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