Losing It is a series detailing real accounts of people who have transitioned away from faith, particularly Christianity. The author of the following story in the Losing It series wishes to remain anonymous. It has been edited only for syntax and flow.
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If Only My Mom Knew My Truth.
I am a 30 year old black woman. I have a Master of Divinity and currently volunteer at my white Christian megachurch every Sunday. I don’t know that I wish to be labeled anything, but I know that I no longer wish to be labeled Christian. Just please don’t tell my saved ass mama.
I grew up in the church, have always had questions and have always felt this pull to something that transcends Christianity. I went to seminary because I wanted to learn for myself. I walked away with more questions about the faith but with a certainty about my spiritual identity.
But, according to my mom, I was brainwashed and lost my Jesus in “Cemetery.” She cries out, in what sounds like sheer distress, “What happened to my baby girl?!” She cannot see why I am okay with drinking, okay with sexual freedom, and worst of all, why I am in love with an agnostic man. After meeting my beau, my mom came out her mouth to tell me that she is now okay with me dating him because “you know the Lord, you can bring him to Jesus.” Before she hung up on me for irritating her, I responded, “I will not do that because I accept him how he is and value that he knows God for himself.” And I mean that.
Finding God in Losing Religion
I hear often, “you have to be equally yoked” and well, we are. Because I’m agnostic. More specifically, I’ve accepted that I’m an agnostic theist (define). And I probably have been for quite some time, even before I met my “wayward” boyfriend. I have always had issues with men who are Christian and want to oppress me. They believe that I am supposed to submit to them, answer to them, and that they are my leader. Wrong! Hell to the nah! I am a free thinker and something about inequality in a relationship feels so binding. There is no power struggle between my current beau. He does not vy to control me through religious dogma of masculinity. I can’t think of a more equal yoke than that.
To be clear, it’s not that I think Christianity was designed to oppress women. It’s just that the way it has been used certainly does limit the life choices of women. I think many Christian women find themselves struggling to be both a good disciple and to find freedom in her existence. I know that I certainly did.
Something about Christianity feels so binding. Something about following specific rules with a specific religion feels so damned binding. Quite frankly, I’m no longer about that life. I am free. In my freedom, I have finally found God. You see, it’s not that I don’t believe in Jesus, I just don’t believe that the only way to God is through Jesus. I don’t think Christianity is the end all be all and I honestly believe that when we die, we go back to God because we all come from God. For a rational person, this isn’t hard to fathom. But oh Lord, don’t tell my mama! To her, I may as well be an apostate.
A New Approach to Faith
Because I know people will wonder, no I have not had a bad experience in the church. No one hurt me. I simply wanted to know God for myself, I wanted to know God outside of doctrine and rules that say women are to be subordinate. I don’t doubt the existence of God, I just do not ascribe to any particular religion at this time. I learned the bible in context and that was the best thing I could have done for myself spiritually.
If you’re questioning and curious, honor that; wrestle with it. Ask questions! Don’t believe the hype that you can’t question God. Aren’t relationships about dialogue?
Just don’t tell my mama. I don’t feel like arguing at Thanksgiving.
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