Sometimes I'm serious.
Jesus is a mythical creation like Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, or gay Republicans.
JESUS spent 30 of his 33 years of hanging out with his folks? Was this the best JESUS could do? Talk about having all the ability in the world and doing nothing.
Imagine if a guy today said:
“Hi, I’m a former carpenter who’s lived at home with my parents my whole life. Now I’m an unemployed thirty-year-old rolling around with my buddies who worship me as the Creator of the universe. You better worship me as GOD or you’ll be tortured for eternity after you die! You’re wicked. I’m GOD. Look! I can cast demons into pigs! I can walk on water! I can turn water into wine! My magic tricks prove I created and control the entire universe!”
No sane person would believe this.
Blaming Jews for the death of Christ is like blaming Matt Groening for the death of Maude Flanders. Nobody should be arrested for killing a fictional character.
If Jesus was GOD he was an idiot! If you make the rules you should AVOID being killed by a bunch of MORONS!
Jesus’ message is stupid: I need to share the truth about love, compassion, and eternal bliss with the world. I think the perfect way to do it is to kill myself!
Who would Jesus vote for? There are problems with this question:
1. The super bad, cheating death, leper healing version of Jesus never existed.
2. If Jesus existed he isn’t worth listening to now. Things have changed a bit since 30 A.D.
3. There are better sources to get voting opinions from than an ancient, jobless mystic.
4. Jesus would never have voted. Jesus was killed by the rulers! Jesus wasn’t into politics.
I question a lot of things about Jesus.
Jesus could raise the dead but he couldn’t take some nails out?
What’s more likely? Did Jesus perform miracles that can’t be done by anyone now with the benefit of 2000 additional years of scientific improvements? Or did some Jewish guys lie?
What would Jesus do? Demand people obey him or go to hell. I guess many Christians are Christ-like.
Having faith with no evidence is the only miracle most Christians perform.
If they believed what they claim to Christians would all be extreme daredevils.
If Jesus was a perfect example, Christians should do nothing until they’re thirty, hang out with friends who worship them, piss off Jews, and get killed by Italian morons.
Many of the most popular teachings of Jesus are beyond ridiculous.
The meek inherit the earth? The meek barely inherit the trailer park.
I don’t think the churchgoers of today have any special powers. Many of them have eyeglasses and are defeated by common colds.
How much do I think Christianity is wrong? I’m willing to bet what I’m told is my eternal soul against it. Pretty heavy stakes if you ask me.
Fundamentalist Baha’is demand that others be tolerant.
I wonder if a Mormon comic ever created a bit called “Take my fourth wife please.”
Do you think Republicans would let a Mormon be president? No. Ideas created in the 19th century are too progressive for them.
Why do churches ever show pictures of Jesus or God? Nobody knows what they look like. Somehow, the pictures almost always end up looking like the locals who give money to the church. Could it be a coincidence?
Many followers of the supposedly pacifist Jesus will not vote for a pro-choice candidate. But these same people have no problem voting for pro-war men. Being angry about beings not yet born instead of caring for those who definitely are is as sensible as being a Christian.
The famous evangelist Billy Sunday often challenged Satan to a fight and when he didn't show would raise his arms up in victory. I wonder how society would feel today about someone trying the same stunt today with God or Jesus?
IF I WAS POPE
Hey. I’m Mr. Pope now, but I’m just some guy. I don’t have any special connection to any God. Neither did any of the other Popes. Neither do any of you.
There’s no evidence that proves the existence of the Christian God or any other God.
The church has been lying to almost everyone about almost everything for its entire history.
The dumber and more trusting people have been, the better the church has done financially.
Hating people as Christians makes no sense. Stop it.
There’s a great deal of horrible, immoral content in The Bible
People shouldn’t kill, rape, torture, or mistreat others due to divine commands.
God doesn’t guarantee that all of his followers will be wealthy and get whatever they want if they just pray for it. God isn’t a giant genie who grants everybody wishes.
Go ahead and use condoms. We have more than enough people now.
All consenting ADULTS, including priests, can have sex with other consenting ADULTS any time.
People shouldn’t be abused for refusing to believe in God.
Church officials who molest young boys or girls should be shot and hung simultaneously.
Don’t get politics involved with the church. Politics are a different type of lies.
Eat whatever you want on Friday’s during lent. It isn’t a sacrifice to eat fried fish. A sacrifice would be giving away money to feed hungry people.
If you’re coming to church only a few times a year, come when it’s not Easter or Christmas. The crowds are crazy and there are a lot more opportunities to get good seats on less prime weekends.
Instead of maintaining magnificent structures of stone and stained glass we should HELP NEEDY PEOPLE.
Quit worrying about stupid issues like whether or not Halloween is evil. It is kids putting on costumes, having a bit of sweet candy, and a celebration of the dark Lord Satan. No big deal.
Transubstantiation is a lie. If for some weird reason you feel better about eating actual human flesh and drinking actual blood, you may do so within the range of local laws- but you are a freak.
Let’s just scrap The Old Testament.
Let’s do the same with the New Testament and Apocrypha too.
The new 10 Commandments
1. Try not to harm others.
2. Do what you believe is right.
3. Enjoy life.
4. Be kind to people who deserve it.
5. Don’t try to save others souls. It’s impossible.
6. Don’t pray.
It’s a waste of time.
7. There’s no need to sell everything you have to follow
Jesus. Follow your instincts instead of
a 2000-year-old wandering mystic.
8. No confessing sins to priests. They sin too.
9. Make your own life worth living.
10. Ignore rules if they don’t make sense to you. Even something as “good” as these
commandments might be wrong for you.
Make New Ten Commandments
I’d like to see a list of 10 commandments about some of God’s loonier laws. I wonder how fundamentalist Christians would feel about it.
1. Kill a man who has sex with another guy. Show him no mercy.
2. God commands you to kill enemies of God.
3. You shall dash enemy babies against stones and be happy about it.
4. Rebellious children should die.
5. Those who work on the Sabbath should die.
6. Non-believers in God should die.
7. Obey the God who makes bets with Satan about destroying human lives.
8. Men must have fully intact penises to be among God’s people.
9. Don’t look at God’s stuff. If you look into God’s holy items you die.
10. Know you may be commanded to eat bread cooked over dung.
1. Kill a man who has sex with another guy. Show him no mercy.
Not too sure about the lesbians. It’s a bit unclear on that one. I guess God’s into that. What guy wouldn’t be? Apparently any who aren’t should be slaughtered anyway, according to Leviticus 20:13.
2. God commands you to kill enemies of God.
God is quite a guy!
Joshua 6:20, 21 is a fine example of the massive slaughter of God’s
enemies. God’s flock slaughtered men,
women, young, old, and even the wicked ANIMALS for being against God. Exodus 32: 27-29 provides an even more bizarre
murder case. In this version, the
Levites (God’s priest clan) killed thousands of their Jewish brothers, friends,
and neighbors for their wrongdoings.
Anyone may go at any time!
3. You shall dash enemy babies against stones and be happy about it. Young children are revered in many cultures. Somehow, the holy words of The Bible contain words about dashing babies against rocks. Psalm 137: 8, 9 seems like an extremely heinous passage to have in the words of a loving God. Slaughtering adult heathens for not believing in an invisible god is one thing, but killing innocent babies is taking senseless death to another level of sadistic evil.
4. Rebellious children should die. That’s right. Any kids who curse their parents should DIE.
Parents today are soft.
They almost never kill their kids like God tells them to in Leviticus
5. Those who work on the Sabbath should die. God’s people are really slacking! Many Christians work on the Sabbath. Should they place the death sentence on themselves? It’s almost like this commandment does not exist in America. There’s never a time when 7-11, Waffle House, or even several Christian owned businesses close. Many church folks eat at buffet restaurants and go shopping at malls on the Sabbath. Supporting local businesses is a far cry from murdering them for violation of divine code. Exodus 31: 14, 15 might be 0% enforced in the present day.
6. Non-believers in God should die. In Deuteronomy 13:1-5, God commands His followers to kill people who worship other Gods. Most of the people alive today should be killed. In theory this type of command might lead God’s followers into some type of “holy war” against other faiths.
7. Obey the God who can make bets with Satan about destroying human lives. God rewarded the strong virtues of Job by allowing Satan to destroy Job’s life. This entire incident began with dialogue that sounds like teenagers making a ridiculous bet instead of conversing in the manner of grand divine beings. Examine Job 1:8-12 to see how a good man experienced torture so God could make a point to Satan. God made up to Job in the end (Job 42:12) by giving him fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, a thousand yoke of oxen, and one thousand donkeys. What a consolation to a man who watched his whole family die: His own personal zoo as an apology gift.
8. Men must have fully intact penises to be among God’s people. This is just downright laughable. Any man who has their testicles crushed or their penis cut off can’t be part of the assembly of the Lord. Deuteronomy 23:1 makes this a plain fact. Why would the Creator of the universe be so worried about a guy’s penis? If anything, I think God should have a TREMENDOUS amount of sympathy for these poor guys. Apparently not.
9. Don’t look at God’s stuff. If you look into God’s holy items, you’ll die. Although this law may no longer apply, it’s still a weird rule. Who wouldn’t look at something holy from God if they had the chance? The arc must have been full of some pretty frightening stuff to kill 70 guys as reported in 1 Samuel 6:19. It must have been even worse than a horror movie.
10. Know that you may be commanded to eat bread cooked over dung. Ezekiel Chapter 4 is bizarre from start to finish. Poor Ezekiel is commanded to lie on his side for more than a year to cleanse the sins of God’s people. Ezekiel 4:12-15 is one of the stranger sequences of events in the entire Bible. It’s an exchange between God and Ezekiel that begins with God ordering Ezekiel to eat bread baked with human fecal matter. Even for the Bible this is bizarre.
Ezekiel had to make sure that the baking of this dung bread was done in front of others. Ezekiel rightly protests and says he doesn’t eat unclean things. God changes his orders by allowing Ezekiel to eat bread baked from cow manure instead of human waste.
It doesn’t seem like an improvement to go from eating dung bread to eating dung bread of a slightly different type. But who am I to understand the ways of the Lord? It seems cruel and unusual to make a guy lay on his side eating dung bread for more than one year. There’s no rational reason for the Creator of the universe’s dung bread trials for Ezekiel.
If I’d been in charge during the Crusades I would’ve said “Let’s forget about attacking pagan heathens for a while. I don’t know about you but I don’t like the thought of being killed by an infidel. I think we should go after the original problem of original sin. Let’s get those fucking snakes.”
Jesus refused to let his disciples fight even when Romans had him killed! This is a lot different than bombing supposed terrorists with preemptive strikes because they MIGHT have dangerous weapons.
Imagine how different the world would be if Judas had said “Screw you pal! I want Jesus to live.”
The cornier the hymns, the more evil the church group.
Typical Christian youth ministry message: Jesus wants you to have a rocking good time while threatening non-Christians with eternal damnation!
I had Christian friends who believed God was calling them to ask certain girls out. As if the same God who ignored mass third world starvation willed them personally to go have a nice dinner date.
Only Christians find it a good idea to show respect to the all-powerful ruler of the universe by singing terrible songs for an hour.
I think a good tagline for a Christian Diet Business would be “Blessed are the sleek, for they shall not inherit the girth.”
Primitive people easily killed God in Jesus form but apparently nobody can touch the Devil.
If any of you Christians can perform miracles, make my ball club win more games.
It’s tough to know who to trust, but never believe people who say it is blessed to be meek while they control the Vatican.
My favorite Japanese Bible translation is John 3:16- “A mythical invisible man loved Earth so much he sent his wizard son there, and whoever believes this can’t be killed.”
Jesus is not my savior. I prefer the ER.
Anyone who worships their creator should treasure when their Dad orgasms.
Quick sermon: In the beginning, God created the heavens and the Earth. In the end, Jesus comes back.
I wonder if they’ll ever market an antacid tablet for those suffering from symptoms of transubstantiation.
It’d be awesome if Jesus came back and admitted that he was gay, but it was no big deal.
Jesus is the subject of few good songs coming from white people.
Thanks for the “gift” of salvation. Way to weasel out of a real present again this year Jesus.
Preachers aren’t always the salt of the earth. For me preachers are the salt in the eye wound.
A FEW SERMONS I’D LIKE TO HEAR
Leviticus: Special rights of the priest class
Numbers 31: Destroy heathen babies and take care of conquered virgins
Deuteronomy: Would Jesus stone folks on the Sabbath?
Hosea: God commands his servant to bag a prostitute
Jonah in the great fish: Relevance to the 21st Century
Song of Solomon: Sex is cool with God
Mark: Jesus threatens hell
Luke: Magical Jesus healing powers
John: Threatening Pharisees?
Acts: How to kill people who lie to the Holy Spirit
Revelation: Goodbye wicked humanity, hello faithful believers
LORD’S PRAYER, WITH COMMENTARY
Our Father, who art in heaven…
If there is one, which I see no evidence for
Hallowed be thy name…
But people call you by thousands of different names. They can’t all be right! Oh well.
Thy kingdom come…
Unless you keep us waiting two thousand more years.
Thy will be done...
Except for it is unclear what you want people to do specifically.
On Earth as it is in heaven…
But we don’t know what heaven is like. So we’ll just stick to how it’s done on Earth.
Give us this day, our daily bread…
Call me selfish, I want more than one more day. And I want to eat more than just bread.
And forgive us our trespasses…
I think I’m innocent on this one. I don’t go places I don’t belong.
As we forgive those who trespass against us…
Cool, nobody breaks into my place.
And lead us not into temptation…
Duh! What kind of God would tempt mortals with evil?
But deliver us from every evil…
Funny, I’ve never heard of anyone avoiding all evil.
For thine is the kingdom…
Well, if it actually exists.
And the power…
Except for everywhere I’ve been.
And the glory…
Why does God need human praise?
Forever and ever…
Seems like a long time.
Shit, I’m glad that’s over.
Giving a sermon
Most preachers are expected to give sermons. Holy men follow a standard speech format.
1. Begin service by blessing people. Utter some vague positive phrase like: “May the Lord thy God look after all who serve and obey Him.” It makes people feel good.
2. Pass the church collection plate.
3. Face the audience with a serious facial expression while the rest of the folks sing boring hymns.
4. Have someone read a Bible verse. Something like:
“1st Michael, Chapter 7, verse 18-20. The prophets of God began making predictions
and having visions. They were filled with visions of colors, people, and
objects for several minutes. Predictions
of a future filled with evil and corruption.
And the prophets did cry out “Oh Lord what doth these visions mean?”
5. Pass the church money collection plate, ideally right after reading a spooky
6. Pray. Something like:
“Oh Lord. May you open the eyes of the wretched sinners in the audience today who desperately need to be saved from the eternal flames of hell. Amen.”
7. Wing a threatening, non-sense speech.
8. Emphasize a need to act and get saved now before it’s too late.
9. Save any souls that need to be saved.
10. Encourage more praise to the Lord.
11. After an emotional high point, pass the church collection plate.
12. Give the masses a thought to carry with them throughout the week.
“And as you go into your places of business and unemployment lines go with God!
13. Sit quietly while the people sing a few more tunes.
14. End service with vague comforting words.
“Call on His name to receive blessings. Amen.”
15. Celebrate the end of a grueling 1 hour work week.
16. Start planning for next week. Or take 167 hours off until the next preaching.
Why The Bible (or any other book) Can’t Tell You
What to Do
There’s no book in The Bible labeled The Book of Doug Jones, or whatever your name is. The Bible is about people who may not have actually existed thousands of years ago. Just about every book is produced for a massive general audience. The Bible is no exception.
One can try to emulate Jesus, Winnie the Pooh, or any
other specific character. This doesn’t
make it a moral action. There’s no book
that lays out every single action a person should take.
No book provides specific information such as “You should eat breakfast at 6:57 A.M. everyday. You should eat two pieces of toast that are held over a fire for ten seconds a side. This toast should have half an ounce of homemade jelly as a topping. You must eat the crust of the bread first. Consuming the toast should be done in a series of 57 bites that takes no longer than five minutes to consume, but no less than four minutes. “
These instructions, although specific, could be carried out in a number of different ways. There could be toast of various sizes. Thin pita bread vs. a thick focaccia would result in different cooking styles. What type of jelly should be used as a topping? Why 57 bites? How can one best ensure they have the right amount of bites?
A Christian influenced comedy sketch
OPEN ON: A SECRET CIA PRISON
We nabbed another one chief!
Thank God for Homeland Security! America needs us Johnson. What’s the story on this terrorist?
Arab male, initially picked up for infiltrating our nation without a passport.
None. Says he answers to no government, hates capitalism, and thinks Western Civilization has no morality.
Sounds serious. How’s his psych test?
Disturbing. He apparently has delusions of grandeur, suicidal tendencies, and is clinically insane.
That’s not a combination to be taken lightly.
It gets worse sir. Turns out he is the leader of a radical sect.
He demands that his every command is rigidly obeyed, or his followers will suffer brutal torture.
His rap sheet isn’t though. He’s had run-ins with the law in every place he’s ever been.
Yes. And he’s known to escape even the tightest of security sir.
He’s been caught before and he got into our country?
His network is impossible to find sir. It’s almost as if he can disappear at will.
What crimes has he committed?
He defiled holy sites of his enemies. He fully supported a leader that wiped out entire tribes. He even promised that he’ll rule the world after a great bloodbath.
Psychotic. Guards! Bring him to me!
GUARDS THROW JESUS TO THE GROUND
All right boys; let’s get this rag-head terrorist for America!
THOU SHALL NOT KILL WHO EXACTLY?
Thou shall not kill. Except for plants. And animals that you eat. And humans I deem evil. Which technically is all of you wicked sinners. So thou shall only kill whenever I arbitrarily approve, but you don’t get to know when that is.
Let’s try this again. Thou shall not kill. But go ahead, eat plants. That doesn’t count. Go ahead and eat meat. Animals don’t count either. Kill all bacteria and other cells that can harm you personally.
Forget about the fact that Jesus committed suicide. You shouldn’t do it! You should just emulate the version of Jesus your local religious leaders approve.
Some evil people need to die. Your local political leaders can interpret The Bible to figure out who.
Kill the long list of people I command you to in the Old Testament. Kill the tribes of people who own land you want as I instruct in The Bible. Kill people who serve other gods. Kill people who serve no gods. And worship me, the one who kills all of you.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE CHRISTIAN TO BE FULL OF SHIT!
PROS AND CONS OF RELIGIONS
1. Start your own religion
Pro- You make up the rules. A lot of potential holidays.
Con- Hard to get tax breaks. A lot of people act like your wacky religion is somehow crazier than others.
Pro- Possible eternal salvation in paradise. Some really beautiful churches on this team!
Con- Serving as a slave of Christ makes this life suck. Jesus tends to answer a lot less prayers than The Bible says. Possible eternal hellfire if you screw up.
Pro- Possible eternal salvation in paradise. Rules often warped in your favor if you’re a dude.
Con- Being a woman. Possible eternal hellfire if you screw up.
Pro- You don’t have to push outsiders to join the flock. You can deny every single truth of the religious claims, but still be in the tribe just because you were born.
Con- Tons of weird stuff encouraged. Lots of people persecute you.
Pro- Lots of gods to pick and choose from. A lot of different rules you can choose to play by.
Con- Caste system is rough if you’re not in a winning bracket at birth.
Pro- No one can judge you if you get a little heavy. You look good in orange saffron.
Con- Meditating not as good as having nice stuff.
Pro- Wide range of turbans thought to be “cool.” Due to Westerners being almost entirely ignorant of your faith, you have almost no chance of being mocked on comedy programs.
Con- People in most of the world think you’re Muslims.
Pro- Not a religion. No mystery man watching you at all times, judging you, deciding whether to let you into the Playboy Mansion or the gas chambers for eternity.
Con- No easy excuses for bad behavior.
Pro- You can do whatever you want. No flag waving.
Con- Somehow, people sometimes still get mad at you for admitting your lack of knowledge.
10. Cult group
Pro- A unique experience. You could be the start of something big.
Con- Brainwashing. Occasional cyanide Kool Aid, government raid, or end times everyone dies party.
Hindus have more gods than Baskin Robbins flavors! Hindus could repeatedly piss off a god and go to a new one until they mess up again for several reincarnations.
The Caste system: Poor people are treated like a dirty tissue throughout most of the world. At least it isn’t due to screwing up in past lives! Talk about guilty until proven innocent. Not even a day old and destined to be a plumber for life.
Any religion that lets millions of people go to bed hungry while treating a cow as a sacred being is odd.
Hinduism is wrong! And may I be reincarnated as Jessica Alba if I’m wrong!
Buddha was a ridiculously wealthy prince who left all he had to hang out with some penniless monks. Eventually Buddha realized that it sucked to be poor, and founded a religion that allowed him to get fat while sitting on his lazy butt in “meditation.”
I think Buddha invented a religion just so he could sell little statues of himself. Buddhists claim it is essential to end all desires to achieve enlightenment. But isn’t the desire to achieve enlightenment still a desire?
Buddha died because he ate some bad food. I don’t think he would’ve made it in the age of fast food long enough to be a prophet in the first place.
No matter what you call it, The Old Testament, The Hebrew Bible, or The Silly Fake God Diaries, the holy book of the Jews makes no sense.
What’s more likely? An unsubstantiated, jealous, and vengeful Yahweh who ordered the killing of large groups of humans multiple times in his own book is the author of the most perfect and holy scriptures of all time? Or that The Bible was written by imperfect humans?
Noah’s Lesson: Being the best guy on Earth may lead to chilling on a boat with lots of animals.
Father Abraham was called by God to kill his own son. Lesson: Being willing to commit child homicide is the foundation of family values.
God loved Jacob and hated Esau. Lesson from Esau: God hates some people.
Joseph was his father Jacob’s favorite, wore nice clothes, and constantly reminded his older brothers that they were wrong. As a result, Joseph was sold by his own brothers into slavery. Lesson: Being a smug prick may lead to being sold into slavery. But hard work and skills in dream interpretation can get you to a place where you rise to the top and forgive your psychotic brothers.
Joshua’s army destroyed the city of Jericho by playing musical instruments. Lesson: God will let you kill your enemy in creative ways if it is his will. I wonder how bad the tune they played was, or how loud. It would be ironic if the tune was “We Built This City.”
David killed Goliath and became a king. Lesson: Kill bullies who oppose God. It’s lucrative.
Jonah was swallowed up by a great fish after he tried to disobey orders from God. Lesson: God might have you live inside a great fish if you try to bolt on his plans.
Daniel’s lion’s den miracle can be explained rationally. I’ll bet he had the bright idea to jump in a pile of lion turds. I’ve never been around lions much, but I bet they don’t eat vittles covered in their own feces either.
I’m examining some of the passages of The Bible that could be considered less than flattering to believers. There are some wonderful parts of The Bible too. For example, nothing is better than the feeling of power one gets when they beat their slaves as instructed in the Biblical book of Exodus.
Moderate Muslims rarely speak out publicly against powerful rulers in the Arab world. Why? I have a theory. I believe it’s possible that they’re quiet because if they weren’t they’d be imprisoned, tortured, or killed.
If I have Islamophobia, it’s because I’ve seen what they might do to people who aren’t on their team.
Islam promises 72 virgins to holy warriors who die for the honor of Islam. I can think of worse things, but what if you want a girl with experience? Do they remain perpetual virgins? Or do they get looser with use?
It’d be cruel if they were mandated to remain virgins because you couldn’t have sex with any of them. Imagine spending eternity with a bunch of hot chicks you couldn’t have sex with. What about obedient Muslim chicks? Do they get 72 virgin dudes after death? Would that be considered pleasurable? Or does misogyny in Islam continue into the after life?
The Koran has less useful truth than a Waffle House menu.
Praying five times a day? I don’t even jerk off five times a day anymore. You think I’m going to bother praying five times a day?
Things the United States Criticizes Muslims For:
Muslims United States
Stoning to death We still kill criminals
Women’s rights Women still make less
Violence Thousands of murders!
Nuclear weapons in Iran We have the MOST
Dressing chicks in beekeeper suits No nude public women
Religious fanatics No liquor on Sunday
Being anti-science Block stem cell research
Royalty system Bushes? Clintons?
People kill our soldiers People kill when invaded
I’m a fundamentalist agnostic. I refuse to believe anything other than I have no clue about reality.
I don’t get people who claim to know God personally. I think they’re as accurate as people who believe Warren Buffet made his money at the track.
The lie about babies being born believing in God can easily be proved wrong. Babies are born agnostics. There’s no way they can form an opinion about God. They haven’t even figured out how to avoid pissing their pants for God’s sake! They can’t talk. They can’t comprehend concepts like God.
The agnostic’s prayer: Dear unknown God or gods that may or may not exist- If you could give us some more reliable information about what you are, that would be great. Otherwise, a lot of people are going to suspend judgment. All right, take it easy, mystical unknown spirit thing.
Hell isn’t real. Not even the devil could find a way to cover the heating costs.
Hell isn’t likely to exist, because all that weeping and gnashing of teeth would result in serious productivity setbacks due to skin and oral hygiene problems.
Anyone who tried to capture evidence of hell would be burned alive.
DREAM CLIENT FOR A MISSIONARY, PRAYER, AND FAITH
DREAM CLIENT FOR A MISSIONARY
You know, all that the greatest minds in human history have ever thought of, all the experiences I’ve ever had, all the things the people I’ve loved have told me, and everything that seemed true to me up to this point must have all been lies. I now completely believe exactly what you’re telling me. Here’s one billion dollars.
How was human life created? After years of study I’ve combined the best of all theories so I think I’ve got the answer. God big banged a monkey.
If there’s anyone who can prove the existence of God to me in less than one second, go!
I love the question I get from religious folks on occasion: “If you don’t believe in God, what do you believe in?”
“I believe taking the risk of drinking water is better than being dehydrated.”
I don’t think many of them find that to be a theologically satisfying answer. But it helps me sleep at night.
Is it better to believe in a false god or nothing at all?
If humans are made in god’s image, why are humans so cruel and weak?
God given rights? No God, nothing’s given, there are no rights!
If God is just, why did I get pulled over for speeding when I was just keeping with the flow of traffic?
To Intelligent Design advocates: What intelligent being designed your God?
God speaks to you personally? Then why are you an insurance salesman? If God was talking to me, I’d be a gazillionaire who saved humanity. If God talks to you and this is what you do, you must have one boring and powerless God.
You want to find God? Spin around in a circle a bunch of times until you feel dizzy and fall down. Then write down your visions in a book. That’s as accurate as anything we’ve got so far.
I hope that if there’s a divine being, it is more moral than the kids I went to junior high with.
Children are a godsend sent by a God that’s a sadist.
Anyone in a relationship with God must get tired of being constantly stood up.
Thou shall not kill. Let God do it.
Bad things happen to good people because God likes naps.
Bad things happen to good people because God hates kiss ass rule respecters.
People who act as if they are God’s gift to humanity are often the worst evidence for their argument.
If science can ever find a way to save everyone, billions of people will still say it was God.
If God appoints political and religious leaders, God appears to favor incompetent pricks.
The best thing I’ve ever heard uttered by a human about God: "She was not on the shitter when God was handing out tits."
God isn’t watching us. Statistically speaking, if God is watching anything it’s Chinese sitcoms.
If there’s anyone from above looking out for me it’s probably a government spy.
If you have to know your enemy to beat them, queer literature should be mandatory in Bible schools.
I think a fun way to prove the existence of God would be on an Etch a Sketch.
Why do so many people suffer? It turns out God isn’t a people person.
If God’s watching us, it has poor taste in entertainment.
If there’s a God watching us, perhaps we should put on a more entertaining show before we get cancelled.
I think a good name for a Jewish gay rights group would be Schlomos for Homos.
Dear Monotheistic Parent,
You’re lying to your children. Some of you just don’t know it.
Sure, I hate everything about your false religion and phony God. I think your faith was created by corrupt men who took advantage of weak-minded, simple people. I think your current leaders are deceitful pricks. I don’t think it’s ethical to imprint the wicked threat of eternal torture for disobedience to God into the minds of your trusting children. But that’s no reason why we can’t get along.
MISC. RELIGIOUS BITS
Anyone who gives up this life in hopes of rewards in the afterlife should still remember to take a bath.
Guilt is a part of religion like pig is a part of bacon.
Creationism as science is as useful as using Bazooka Joe Comics to piece together all of human history.
If hell is eternal torment, do you ever get used to it
even a little bit? You know how running
sucks? But if you run everyday for a
month straight it still sucks, but not as much as it did before. Same thing with the devils torment maybe?
I wonder if work in hell could be dodged temporarily like people dodge work in this realm. A person trying to knock off early from the fire pits or from having their nuts crushed repeatedly is a funny thought to me.
Imagine talking over hell. How could you run the place worse than the
previous rulers? Wouldn’t you be
considered kind no matter what you did?
Even if you tried to imitate the devil, could you?
Purgatory is like being stuck at your weird Uncle’s house. What type of God would postpone judgment while making souls wait around like some incompetent doctor?
This supposedly all-powerful God acts like a spoiled brat. He demands psychotic levels of attention. You can’t see me but think about me all the time! Like a nagging girlfriend when you’re on a road trip.
RELIGIOUSLY INFLUENCED SKETCHES
HOW HELPFUL- Djibouti, Tim
OPEN ON: SOMALIA
We live in danger Tim.
It’s your fault for being born in Somalia.
That’s harsh Tim.
Hey, Djibouti, I don’t want to sugar coat things for you. I hate all that cultural sensitivity crap going around.
But that’s offensive to people in my land who aren’t violent.
Oh, you mean the babies and THE DEAD PEOPLE.
Very funny. Look, I didn’t ask to be born in Mogadishu.
You’re 16 now tough guy. You don’t like it, move to New York.
I can’t afford to move to New York.
That’s bullshit. You’ve never even had a job.
Men aren’t able to get jobs. There are no jobs.
You just need to pick up the want ads and start at the bottom.
There are no want ads. There are no newspapers.
Boy your country really sucks.
Why are you here anyway Tim?
BUDDHA WAS FUNNY- Ty, Jill
OPEN ON: A BUDDHIST TEMPLE
Welcome to the Buddhist temple. I’m Ty.
JILL LOOKS SURPRISED
Ty isn’t a very Buddhist sounding name.
I converted from Wicca.
Please, feel free to join the meditation session or go to the snack bar at any time.
Nice. What kind of snacks do Buddhists have anyway?
Vegetarian delights: Fresh mangoes, juicy berries, freshly cut carrots, and skittles.
Wait, skittles don’t seem to fit with the rest.
You should try them. They’re absolutely wonderful.
Yeah, but they’re hardly health food.
The Buddha allows experiencing ethical earthly delights.
I guess he was a fat guy.
TY GIVES JILL A STERN LOOK
We encourage you to study Buddha but we think of him as much more than just a fat guy.
He’s no Chris Farley I’ll tell you that.
Actually, in his time, Buddha was quite a comedian.
OPEN ON: THE BUDDHA COMEDY HOUR
Okay people. What’s the deal with monasteries? I mean, you’ve achieved nirvana, the extinguishment of the meaningless pursuit of suffering, and you still choose to sit around in those tacky orange saffron robes?
Oh Buddha, you crack me up.
And what’s the deal with the 4 Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path?
Corporate Karma- Lama/Jill/Amy/Sara/Voice Over/Kevin/Richard
OPEN ON: THE DALAI LAMA IN A MEETING WITH ADVERTISING EXECUTIVES IN THE LOOP
The violence in Tibet is a great weight on my soul. Can your company help?
Mr. Lama, I don’t know what to believe about God or Tibet. But I have total faith in Radical Yo Advertising.
Your sincere belief is just what we need for a major commercial endorsement!
This is not about money. There are people dying!
And we’re sensitive to that. But you have to realize that you are the face of this issue!
We understand your goal is to win Tibet through peaceful means.
Nothing is more peaceful than working with Radical Yo.
Advertisers and major corporations only exist to eliminate suffering.
But we have to be careful about our ads. There is no bigger market than China.
We don’t want to step on more than ten billion toes.
All I want to do is end suffering and save lives.
I love that! Hero with heart wants to save lives!
As long as we don’t get too political it can’t miss!
Mr. Lama, imagine a single fantastic product uniting enemies and creating peace.
We want to do a campaign with the Coke people.
Sure, media coverage and sales will go through the roof.
But more importantly Mr. Lama, your message of peace can be seen worldwide.
I realize even great leaders must compromise to be on TV. Let’s do it.
One hour later.
JILL, AMY, AND SARA ARE SEATED. KEVIN SMITH ENTERS.
Hey Mr. Lama, I’m the director, Kevin Smith. I’m a fan of your work. Maybe I’ll use one of your lines in my next flick, Super Boob Fest.
I’m glad I have inspired you young man. Can we please begin?
Oh yeah, sure. Roll it.
KEVIN IS SEATED. RICHARD GERE ENTERS AND STANDS NEXT TO LAMA.
Hello, I’m Richard Gere. Our world is facing unique challenges. We need heroes to help. Now two of my greatest heroes, The Holy Dalai Lama and Coca Cola are buying the world a coke in a whole new way.
Thanks Richard. Coca Cola and I want to help the victims of tragedy in Lhasa.
But what can a regular guy like me do to help people so far away?
Anyone can help save the world. Just buy special edition Karma Coke products!
That sounds too good to be true!
As one of the great spiritual leaders of the world, I assure you this is a heavenly deal.
RICHARD DRINKS A BIT OF KARMA COKE
Wow! That is delicious! My conscience and my taste buds have never felt so good!
I hope everyone is cool and refreshed like Richard. Support Coke. Experience transcendent flavors. Buy the world a Karma Coke and sing in harmony! Thank you.
Vote Anti- Christ! - Anti-Christ/Ruth Magdalene/Fred Jones/Senior Sexy/Pepper Jackson/Trudy Smith
Massive change will come. I will unite all people of the world. I implore all who can to vote for me, The Anti- Christ, for president!
Statements of shock come from the group of gathered reporters. After a few moments one reporter stands up.
Surely you don’t believe this Christ centered nation would vote for the Anti-Christ!
Polls show the American people are tired of ugly religious labels. My private beliefs should have no bearing on the results of this election.
What do you say to critics that claim you want to bring on the end of the world?
Unless you want me to bring up your end of the world parties back in your college days Freaky Freddie, I think it’s time to move on.
I withdraw my question.
What is your official stance on Britney Spears?
The troubled Ms. Spears is going through a tough time right now. Don’t worry; she is one of my helpers. I wish her all the best for years of media coverage to come.
How tough do you plan to get with enemies of America?
Terrible pain will come to any that oppose order. My plans will create a system where the entire world will live in peace, or else!
That is the kind of tough response we need from a real man of today. Boo-yah!
It’s nice to see some journalists are enthusiastic about their work. Yes, you over there.
Are you running as a Democrat or a Republican?
I’m an independent, but the Republican agenda is quite similar to mine. Remember, politics are too complicated to understand. Forget about problems. Watch TV. Listen to pop music. Work and let me handle the rest. The Anti-Christ will give em’ hell in DC!
The Anti-Christ salutes the crowd with a double fisted “devil horns” salute and exits the stage
UNIQUE JOB OPPORTUNITY- Imran, Ahmed
OPEN ON: A CHEAP TV AD
IMRAN AND AHMED WEAR SUITS
Having trouble with the ladies?
Our program guarantees you’ll have as many beautiful women as you can handle!
Worried about your mediocre past?
Our program guarantees your slate will be wiped completely clean.
Worried about being stuck at a dead end job?
Our program guarantees you’ll find meaningful work.
Are you suffering poor health?
Our program guarantees you’ll no longer be worried about health problems.
Are you worried about global recession?
AHMED WAVES A HANFDUL OF CASH
Our program guarantees you’ll no longer have money woes.
Are you worried about living a purposeless life?
Our program guarantees you’ll serve your community and the world.
Are you worried about the future?
Our program maps out a solid long-term plan for everyone.
Quit the grind and get the life you know is your destiny.
Stop living for no good reason.
Do something truly meaningful for once in your life.
Join the suicide bomb squad!
Be a revolutionary hero and solve all of your problems!
No more relationship problems!
Only heavenly bliss with more women than you can count!
No more worrying about eternal damnation!
The one true God wipes the slate clean when you complete your mission!
No more job problems.
You only have to do one gig for eternal rewards!
No more health problems.
You get full afterlife coverage.
No more money problems.
You’re rewarded with everlasting riches!
No more hollow living.
You’re guaranteed to serve Allah!
No more worries about the future.
AHMED GIVES A “THUMBS UP” GESTURE AND A SMILE
You get eternal paradise!
You’re going to die someday anyway. Why not guarantee a free pass to heaven? Sign up for yourself and Allah. You’ll never stop thanking yourself for it!
SOME FUNNY COMEDY BITS ABOUT RELIGION
Check out any of the following on YouTube, or another place if you can:
Doug Stanhope- His stand-up bit “On Jews” is one of the funniest things I’ve ever heard.
Lewis Black- His stand-up bit on The Old Testament is classic.
Ricky Gervais- HIs stand-up bit on The Bible and the talking snake are delightful.
Bill Cosby- His stand-up bit on Noah is rather tame compared to most of the rest of the list, but it’s humorous and is worth hearing.
George Carlin- His stand-up bits “religion is bullshit” “the 10 Commandments” and “life after death” are all fantastic.
Dennis Miller- He has a great bit on The Off White album about how some kids on a plane sing religious songs and seem to be looking forward to death as he’s just going into a mountain.
Lenny Bruce- His stand-up bit “Religions Inc.” is funny for its era.
Pat Condell- He’s solid on just about everything he discusses.
Bill Maher- Religulous is a great film; he has numerous anti-religion stand-up bits, and frequently criticizes religion on Real Time.
Bill Hicks- Nearly all of his work is amazing, and his stand-up bit on “Fundamentalist Christians” is highly recommended.
Sam Kinison- He has many stand-up bits about Jesus, but I particularly enjoy his bits about Jesus never being married and his potential comeback.
Mr. Show- The “Swear to God” sketch is a clever play on the theatrical mannerisms of Christianity.
Woody Allen- Frequently proclaims atheistic statements and also discusses his fear of death in his films.
Kevin Smith is a Catholic, but his film Dogma satirizes Catholicism well.
David Cross- His stand-up bit about the roads in heaven is priceless.
The Chasers –A top shelf Australian comedy troupe who did wonderful sketches mocking the music of Hillsong, and confronted Christians about some bizarre Biblical commandments.
The movie Saved is a funny fictional portrayal of sanctimonious religious folks.
Monty Python- They lampoon religion in creative ways. Oddly, I didn’t think their work in The Life of Brian, often hailed by secularists, was their best. But the group is one of the all-time greats in comedy. I worship their Holy Grail and Flying Circus.
Penn and Teller Bullshit! - The episode focused on The Bible being bullshit is funny.
Adam Carolla- He has numerous radio bits about how foolish he finds religion.
Larry David- Curb Your Enthusiasm frequently mocks religion. The episodes where Larry pretends to be an Orthodox Jew, fights an actor playing Joseph, and hosts a disastrous Seder dinner are all well done.
Edward Current- He’s made some hysterically funny internet bits. But none are funnier to me than “Checkmate Atheists.”
The Simpsons often mocks religion. The episode when Homer abandons religion titled “Homer the Heretic” is a gem.
4/29/99 SELF ASSESSMENT
I wrote this for a college assignment when I was 20 years old in 1999.
Section 1 Current Assessment of Self
Role 1- son
1. obedient- I attempt to make every effort to obey my mother’s desires unless they are immoral or illegal.
2. independent- Despite the fact that I am obedient, I have learned that I must depend on myself to make things happen in my life.
3. respectful- I treat my mother in a manner in which she deserves to be treated, regardless of what circumstances we may be going through with each other.
4. loving- I tell my mother I love her often, and attempt to back up my words with loving actions.
5. advising- In many ways, I believe I give my mother as much advice as she gives me. She asks me often about my opinions on spiritual, financial, and theoretical information.
6. talkative- My mother and I chat often, typically for lengthy periods of time.
7. exciting- It is my firm belief that I provide a great deal of enthusiasm and hope for my mother. I believe I feed a youthful and exuberant force in her life.
8. listener- When my mother has struggles that are complex, I am probably the first person she discusses them with.
9. fun- I enjoy doing things with my mother, and we have common interests in many leisurely aspects.
10. honest- I do not have the ability to lie to my mother, and I have no motivation to destroy our trust.
Role 2 Friend
1. random- In friendship I feel it is almost my duty to be unpredictable and provide off the wall antics at certain moments.
2. loyal- If you have established a bond with someone, you should maintain good standing with that person.
3. unique- I feel that I look at the world and its contents in a different way than most do, and I feel I have various interactions with friends as well.
4. adjustable- If I am with a loud and obnoxious friend I can sit back and laugh at them quietly, while if I am around a quiet friend I can get them to open up.
5. spontaneous- I am not an advocate of tiresome monotony, and I try to come up with spur of the moment things to do with my friends.
6. interesting- I hope that I stimulate people to want to become better people, and also enjoy my company.
7. dependable- If at all possible, I try to be there for my friends both physically and in support of their decisions.
8. trustworthy- Trusting people takes time, and I feel that I give my friends an opportunity to share personal information with me in a non-judgmental environment.
9. Negotiator- In the past I discovered that I am a good guy to go to as a representative for your desires if you need to bargain with someone else.
10. diplomat- I have also acquired skill in defending the actions of my friends to various groups of people.
Role 3- sibling
1. servant- Through the years I have sacrificed a great deal for both my brother and my sister
2. educator- I have provided a great deal of practical advice on how to get through problems, wisdom of being the oldest child, and general information to my siblings.
3. Initiator- My siblings are both introverted, and it is often my duty to get them started in doing social things.
4. illogical- It is my responsibility to introduce silly concepts to my siblings.
5. strange- It is also my responsibility to ensure that my siblings are exposed to odd things in my plain hometown.
6. witty- My siblings and I often exchange in intellectual battles or disputes. I must be my sharpest at all times.
7. calm- I try to remain laid back in my interactions with my siblings and let them learn their own lessons.
8. cool- As the oldest sibling it is my responsibility to inform the young ones of what is “jive” and “hip” in the world.
9. collected- When tragedy strikes our family, I deal with it in a composed manner so that my siblings will hopefully have less fear.
10. comfortable- I almost never get into horrible fights with my siblings, and we do not quarrel about things much. We generally get along well.
Section 3- Personal Balance Sheet
1. God is on my side- I have peace of mind, joy, and love because of my Lord and savior Jesus Christ.
2. sense of humor- My ability to laugh at, and make fun of almost everything has given me much enjoyment in life.
3. ability to be personally offended by broad social trends- A quote from The Simpsons, and relevant to me due to the fact that I do not keep up with trends and could not care less about conforming to them.
4. passion for things I enjoy- When I truly love what I am doing I get into it, and have fun in life.
5. do not worry much about others judging me- Life is too short to worry about others who dislike tiny things about me.
6. have many friends but only a few close ones- Most people feel comfortable around me, and I also have deep relationships with my closest friends.
7. ability to eat a lot at buffet meals- I do not waste funds like many do at all you can eat events, and I also feel personal satisfaction.
8. curiosity about nearly all things in life- In the future I will continue to be amazed and baffled by the seemingly infiniteness of life.
9. ability to look at issues from different perspectives- I have a firm refusal to believe that most things must be done a certain way, and I believe that many options should be explored with many matters.
10. The gift of argumentation- My motives are typically pure when I dispute, and my ability to look at different angles combines with my eccentric logic.
11. knowledge of bizarre and trivial information- I love weird and lengthy fact books about random topics. This may come in handy if I ever land a spot on Jeopardy!
12. Listening to people who have suffered- The testimonies of those who have felt intense mental pain intrigue me, and I tend to base my response to them more upon logic than crying with them.
13. dealing with girls who were just dumped by one of my guy friends- I have a great deal of experience in this area, and I try to remind the girls that their relationship was not meant to be.
14. ability to sympathize- I have been through a lot and have the ability to see how I could easily be in the same situation as those who suffer.
15. decent communication skills- Can stumble through getting my thoughts out clearly most of the time.
16. not afraid to try new things within my moral boundaries- There are many on the edge things I would be willing to try if given the opportunity.
17. Desire to travel- It is a rather large world and I strongly feel that I could benefit by seeing as much of it as possible.
18. Content with few possessions- You cannot lose what you cannot have, and I feel I have less to worry about when I own less.
19. always seeking to improve myself- Life is a never ending challenge, and in order to have motivation I must seek to become a better person constantly.
20. priorities- I feel that I have my priorities straight, those being God, gold, then glory. God is first in my life and guides all of my decisions, gold is representative of whatever things in life are good, and glory is the exciting achievements I have and will accomplish.
1. pride- I am far too concerned with how good I am at things, how good I am compared to others, and doing what I want to do all the time. I also care too much about myself to sacrifice for others far too often. Pride is my biggest sin, and leads me to commit virtually all of the other errors I commit.
2. take sense of humor too far- It is easy to forget that the entire point of my sense of humor is to lift people up and make them laugh. Many times I catch myself demeaning others in my joking, and that is unacceptable.
3. hygiene- This is the liability that nearly all of my friends accuse me of being guilty of. I almost never clean, confess to being a slob, do not shower daily, do not cut my hair unless forced, and appear rather shabby and “hermit-looking” most of the time.
4. dealing with romantic relationships- In all my years I have only had one girlfriend. I did not love her and she did not love me. She cheated on me with one of my best friends two months into our relationship, and we broke up. That was three years ago and I have not had a date/relationship since. I never saw my parents as having a loving relationship. Needless to say, I struggle to comprehend the meaning of romantic love, and I do not wish to play the games I see in relationships.
5. refusal to work at things I see little to no point to- My experiences in math classes illustrate this point well. I test well in math and I have been told I have exceptional abilities in the area. Despite this, I have been close to failing in almost every math class I have had since seventh grade because I hate doing it and do not see any relevance it has to my life.
6. unwilling to discuss my biggest problems with anyone but God- I am told that this is unhealthy by many, but I am reluctant to count it as a negative trait. God understands more than people do, and provides me with better answers than others. I do not like burdening others with my problems, and feel uncomfortable around most.
7. negative image of fathers- Most of the fathers I grew up around were either overbearing, pushy, and obnoxious jerks or non-existent in their children’s lives. I learned to depend on myself to solve my own problems.
8. sometimes I wrongly judge others- It’s not up to me to look at the minor imperfections of people, yet I too often focus on negative traits of people that bother me on a personal level.
9. extremely poor handwriting- My penmanship is awful, and it helps to give people one more false reason to label me as a slacker.
10. forgetful of priorities- I feel I have excellent priorities, yet I fail to live up to the benefits of my priorities could bring me by disregarding them.
Section 4- Personal Strategies Assessment
1. Look to God to provide for the questions I have in life- I place my faith in God the father, Jesus Christ the son, and the Holy Spirit. God has provided me with more peace than any other thing in life, and I feel as if I have meaning and purpose in life knowing there is a God who made humans for a reason. Through all of my experiences God has never failed me, and saved me from a lifestyle I believe would have killed me in high school. My God is a personal God, who cares about what I am doing at all times. I feel I can do all things with God on my side, and feel as if I have no pressure to worry about the trivial matters of life.
2. be a part of things where I feel I serve a purpose- This includes both formal and informal organizations that serve my spiritual, mental, and physical needs and desires. Church, soccer, and Jeopardy! are some examples in my life.
3. enjoy the things I do- This is a simple, yet effective strategy. I am typically less happy doing things such as making my bed that I hate to do in order to “improve” my life. Life is too short to do silly chores.
4. Do not get overly comfortable in life- Nothing in life is guaranteed, at any given moment we can lose everything we have for no reason that we are able to comprehend. Getting comfortable also lets us lose our perspective in exploring the vast mysteries of life, and caring for others in some cases.
5. stay focused on positive things- When I feel as if I am doing well in life, that I serve a purpose, and I do exciting things I feel encouraged. When I think about how blessed I am and how lucky I am to have learned lessons from the bad things I have experienced, I feel my life has been positive.
6. Do not forget about the past or future, but do not dwell upon them- Life is meant to be lived for the moment. Worrying about the past is silly because we cannot change it. Worrying about the future has its place, but it can be unhealthy to focus on it. I want to be the best Mike Nesteruk I can be today!
7. never stop learning- I must constantly seek ways to improve myself through increased knowledge and wisdom.
8. enjoy the simple things in life- Some of the best things in life are cheap, such as candy, cake, and ice cream. Do not let life get too complex, or stress will come. I must seek simple truths and pleasures.
9. keep priorities straight- If I remember my priorities and live by them I feel I will accomplish great things.
10. live life with as few regrets as possible- I want to feel as if I did the best I could in life. I want first and foremost, to feel I have led a life that is pleasing to God. I want to experience as much as possible in life, and have good times.
Strategies to Sooth Pain
1. Seek God in times when I hurt- God has much greater wisdom than I do, and provides comfort and solace that cannot be found elsewhere.
2. Keep in mind how much worse others have it- I have a small picture from a magazine that has a group of seven African children with pain filled eyes. The caption on it reads “Every six seconds, a child dies because of hunger. “ Reminders such as this help me keep in mind that I have it really good in life, and my struggles are tiny compared to those who watch innocent and precious life suffer constantly.
3. Keep in mind the grand scheme of things- In the overall lifetime, most negative incidents seem trivial when you think about much worse times you have experienced previously.
4. think about something absolutely ridiculous and have a chuckle- When I am down, it always helps to think of the time when I went to see if one of my friends was sick. He was in his bed, eating nachos, and playing Nintendo. When he saw me he casually got out of bed and was wearing nothing but a bright green sequined G-string! Ridiculous!
5. vent feelings of frustration through positive activity- Getting involved in exploring what benefits you and others.
6. temporarily leave your situation of pain if possible- Cruise to a place as far as Australia, or walk down the street and get a slushee. If you cannot leave the physical place, think about a movie like The Naked Gun or something else you enjoy.
7. unload burdens on best friend available- Simply shout, scream, or yodel your complaints to your friend.
8. Repeat inspirational phrase- State something such as “I’m not going to jail for you or anybody!” It helps to promote peace and tranquility.
9. Remember that all humans fail- Nobody is perfect, and I do not plan on it either. Think about successful people that have failed too.
10. Remember that failure teaches valuable lessons- Some of the most important events that have occurred in my life have been my failures, because I have seen my limits and what is evil.
Section 6- Personal Plan for Improvement
1. Depend less on myself and more on God- Whenever I attempt to do things without God I end up failing miserably. I lose sight of what is important, and why I do the things I do. I will depend on God more by attempting to spend my entire life serving God’s will. By doing this I hope to remember the way people may view Christianity, increase peace of mind, and live life so that I will have no regrets.
2. seek God’s will in prayer- God wills different people to do different things in different ways. It is a huge world with nearly infinite possibilities, and I desire to have guidance in making the best possible decisions for my life. Prayer has not ever failed me, I have always received some type of solution for my problem. In fact, I have prayed for some things, and I have been guided in a different direction than the solution I was praying in favor of. When God’s will is made clear to me, I know it is to my benefit if I obey it.
3. motivation to do good works- It is obvious to me that most people see that there is something positive about performing acts which will benefit humanity. For me, God is the source that provides my motivation to do good things.
4. motivation for being kind to others- Before I had a personal relationship with God, I did not see the point to treating people in a respectful manner, unless it better served my own needs. It is easier to dwell upon the errors, mistakes, and blunders of people around us than it is for us to build them up unless we have some motivation to be kind to people. God has shown me that I must be kind to others, because God is kind to others. (myself included)
5. motivation to love others- The world is full of hatred, and it is extremely difficult to love those who hate me and what I stand for. Yet I feel it is my obligation to love everyone regardless of circumstances due to the fact that I believe God loves all even though we fall short of perfection.
6. read a minimum of two Bible chapters a day- I believe that The Bible is the infallible word of God. (This sounds like a church bulletin statement, but it is what I believe.) I feel it is my privilege to be able to live in a land where I am not persecuted by the government or citizens because of my beliefs. I believe that I should exercise my rights, and enjoy the benefits of being allowed to read the truth of The Bible when I get up and when I go to bed as a routine. Reading The Bible helps me to have questions to ponder throughout the day, find answers to questions I had previously, and helps me to get in better touch with myself and others.
7. do not judge others- Everyone should be able to judge what is right and wrong in their opinion at a basic level, yet it is not my responsibility to judge people. When people judge others they are at fault due to the fact that they are imperfect and deserve to be judged as well. Almost every single thing that I consider wrong I have done at one point or another. If I have not personally committed a particular sin I can usually think of someone who I know and love who has. I would not want my friends who did wrong to be judged, and almost everyone has friends. To err is to be human indeed.
8. Do not be cult-like, but be available to people- One of the issues I have struggled the most with in Christianity has been determining the best way to effect other people in the world. I do believe many people have incorrect views about God, but I also believe that some people who have correct beliefs make others feel inferior and give people a reason to hate the correct beliefs. Cults frighten me, and I could see how somebody could view me as a cultist if they did not know me. I believe it is my duty as a Christian to do all I can to help a suffering world, but I believe being overzealous turns people off to me and my God. I should have desire for God in my life, but I should be willing to meet with people on their terms in discussing my God. It is my hope that people will see the value of my Christianity when they see that I care about God for the right reasons, and understand that I will share my knowledge and experiences with them in a down to Earth manner. I hope others will do the same for me.
9. feel as if I have a life that serves a purpose that benefits myself, others I interact with, and God- I admit that it is a rather lofty goal, yet I feel it is possible to achieve with God working with me.
Section 5- Assessment of Past Factors Influencing Self-perception
1. growing up around Ohio State University ages 1-5- I still have faint memories from what I assume to be the later years of my Ohio State experience. At a young age I know that I was exposed to a wide variety of different cultures, city life, and a bunch of people in public at all times. I still enjoy cultural diversity, the city, and crowds today. Ohio State made me wise to the ways of the world, sparked curiosity, and inspired me to enjoy activity in my opinion. I was aware of danger at a young age, learned a great deal about many different things, and allowed me to see the value of living in the fast lane. Most of these are memories of my beliefs, not hard facts, but I believe they are quite logical in explaining many of my personality traits today.
2. family ages o- present- This factor was so key I almost forgot about it due to the fact that it has always been here. My parents and siblings have been critical to my life in different ways. My mother has done more to shape the person I am today than anyone else. I love her, she taught me life long lessons about God, proper priorities, and sacrifice. She has either directly or indirectly provided me with almost everything I have.
I have learned that treating people well is better than providing for them. I have learned to admit when I am wrong and seek help in defeating my problems. I learned that tragedies can be blessings, and that compassion for others can be gained through painful experiences.
My extended family on my mother’s side has also meant a great deal to me. My grandparents have always been there for me, would provide me with anything they have if I needed it, and have given me strong moral guidance by example. They have allowed me to see that there is good in preserving family ties in a loving family, and they have a great deal of personal experience living in times I can only read about. My aunt’s family had been critical in defining what a family structure should operate like. They are strong Christians who attempt to live for God. They are respectful to each others and guests, and encourage positive activity in each other. My cousin has been one of the most important people in my life since we were children, and has identified with my struggles more than anyone else. He has understood my feelings and opinions dealing with spiritual issues better than anyone else, and has consistently challenged me to become a better man in all walks of life. My family has probably influenced who I am even more than I can imagine.
3. My best friend at age 13- he has been the person I have spent the most time with since I have been old enough to be allowed to hang out in social settings unsupervised. He is the funniest person I have ever known, and has influenced my sense of humor more than anybody else. (Even Mike Myers!) He taught me about the friendship, and what it means to be a loyal friend through hard times. He taught me new rebellious things, but also kept me in check morally. He taught me pranks like peeing in a bag and sticking it in a neighbor’s mailbox.
He showed me pornography and the beauty of video games when I was 13 as well. Yet in later years he would hold me accountable for my moral wrongs, such as my inappropriate hatred and prejudice. We did nearly everything together for years, and I doubt I will ever have a friend I depend as much on as I have for him. I perceive myself and the entire world differently just from getting to know him.
4. trip to Midwest/worst brief time of life age 14- I was 14 and I hated my family to begin with. We were planning on a three week vacation in a van driving throughout the Midwest of the U.S. to eventually see Oregon. I had low expectations going in, and returned a bitter boy. I had a broken arm, and I spent nearly three weeks straight in a hot van with my family on the road. We broke down in a nowhere town in Kansas and had nothing to do for three straight days. We drove for entire days seeing nothing but corn to get to places like the Corn Palace! These places like the Corn Palace (i.e. - Wall Drug, wax museums, Montana, etc.) all “sucked” badly in my opinion. My entire family was miserable and bickering most of the time and on the way home my batteries for my gameboy and headphones ran out and I was not allowed to buy new ones. Facing the reality of driving almost non-stop for days while in the Midwest nearly drove me to madness. It made me realize I could tolerate just about anything.
5. my parent’s divorce- It was a long and painful process for them. It sucked and made me realize how foolish marriage is. I believe I can help others deal with their pain more effectively as a result of being in a less than ideal living situation.
6. High school soccer- age 14-18- Some of the best times I had were playing soccer in high school. Nearly all of my closest friends played, and we had a blast while we talked trash to each other and went to war on the field. My first varsity goal still sticks out in my mind as my favorite athletic accomplishment, and I feel I have become better prepared for everything due to my experiences dealing with the team. I realized that group organizations can be extremely enjoyable, but they should be enjoyed first and not taken too seriously.
7. became a Christian- age 15- I was watching a TV program called ancient prophecies with some friends. I realized that if I died that night that I would go to hell under my own belief system. One of my friends had just become a Christian and asked me that same night how often I prayed. I told him I prayed nightly for forgiveness and he told me I was a Christian. I saw that night that I did believe the claims of the Christian God on an intellectual basis, but I only went through the external motions of serving God due to the traditions of what I had been taught. I realized that when I prayed to God I only did it because that is what I had been taught to do. I did what I wanted to do and what I felt was good doing and did not worry about heaven or hell. I sincerely prayed that God would save me from going to hell because I realized I was unable to save myself. Since that day I have called myself a Christian. This created an entirely different perception of my eternal self.
8.began attempting to live complete life for Jesus-age 17- I knew that I was saved by my faith and the grace of God, but it hit me one Sunday that in church that my everyday lifestyle was just the same as it would be if I were not a Christian. I realized I hated life and was hurting others and myself. I made a commitment to learn more about God and began to live life according to God’s will. This made me realize that I could not do right because of self motivation, but I could do anything if I turned to God.
9. first and only girlfriend- age 17- She was younger than I was and more experienced with relationships. We had a decent time together. We were more like friends than a dating couple. Two months into our relationship, she cheated on me with one of my best friends. I was angry, but did not explode in dealing with either of them. To this day I still have low self-esteem in dealing with women in romantic relationships, and have not had a date/relationship since. I was also reminded not to trust anybody completely, because even close friends can stab you in the back.
10. college- age 18-present- I have had numerous happenings, events, and lessons occur in college. I love this time of my life, and I feel as if God has richly blessed me and has formed me into a pretty cool guy who is still striving to become a better man.
COMMENTARY ON MY 1999 SELF-ASSESSMENT
I can’t believe that I wrote that. It’s comical to see the difference between me in 2010 and the kid who wrote that paper in 1999. I believe my intentions were noble at the time, but I clearly had little clue about a lot of things in the universe. I’m glad that I did my best to write a great paper. It gives me a genuine impression of the way I thought at the time. I don’t deny that a lot of the events I selected were important in my life. But I can’t believe I was foolish enough to believe such obvious religious non-sense for such a long time.
I don’t regret doing my best to follow my sincere convictions. I regret being so easily led by religious thought. I regret not doing something more productive with my time instead of praying and seeking answers from a deity. But I can take the lessons I learned from that era of my life, and appreciate the ways I’ve become a more fully developed human being since that time.
I can also appreciate some of the good parts that I wrote about. It seems that I cared a great deal for my family and friends. I’d like to think that I’ve continued to wish for the best to all of my loved ones. I’m still grateful for the good times I was able to have with wonderful people in my past life, and some of my past lives I’ve had since I wrote this paper.
Some parts of it were even intentionally funny. I love my Simpsons references and use of words like jive. Even when I was caught up in religious fervor, humor found a way to break into my life at times. I suppose that I’ve always been able to see there are many absurdities in the world, and I’ve managed to laugh at some of them most of my adult life.
When I was younger and even less responsible, I still thought about serious social problems like world hunger and mental illness. I remember that my largest goal at that time was to serve God and do his will. As I read, questioned, and prayed more, I came to realize that God doesn’t tend to directly speak to anyone anymore. I don’t regret trying to do what I believed was best. I regret not realizing that there was no deity that would ever speak to me sooner.
I can laugh about some of my ridiculous opinions that were so misguided then. Makes me wonder what irrational things I still believe…
EXCERPTS FROM MY OLD COLLEGE DIARIES- Age 18-20, 1997-1999
Note- I don’t believe most of this anymore in 2010. I can’t believe I wrote some of this. ENJOY!
I didn’t do anything to make myself have better morals, beliefs, or knowledge than anybody else. God does it and did it all for me. Wherever you go you’ll more than likely find people like you, but it is tough to find a true soul mate anywhere and the majority of people will almost assuredly be indifferent to you. Is it possible that all of this stress I’ve been puzzled about is simply because I’ve never been baptized? I know I want to ascend to a higher level, it’s either a lack of sincerity, commitment, preparation, or (what I truly believe it to be) too strong a connection to the world and esp. wanting to do my own thing- I’ve got to fight it.
I’ve battled through so much (my latest battle was worrying about what others think of me) and God is going to get me through this. My dreams mean little to nothing without God. I don’t understand why many things happen.
All I can depend on is God, everything else, including myself, falters.
Ignorance of sin is not a valid excuse for it.
You can take a sabbatical anywhere.
God has taken all of my problems I lifted up to him- eventually.
I personally am involved in a spiritual battle every day.
Christianity is the only world religion in which salvation is based on faith instead of obedience to law or works.
I would be dead and in hell if I would not have gone back to God in high school.
God is one of the only things that will never change in your life.
I have more in common with a Christian than I do with any pagan regardless of their personality and interests.
Even when I deny God he is working in me, or at least is exposing my foolishness.
In certain situations God has willed people to kill, sleep with relatives, preach to the most horrible and hated people on Earth. At times his tactics may seem odd to us, yet there is nothing greater than having God’s plan for you revealed.
We are supposed to be as Christ like as possible. Jesus never baptized anyone and instead ate with Pharisees, sinners, and tax collectors.
The 12 tribes of Israel began with a man who has multiple wives.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always believed in God.
Jesus did not always do what was considered right in the eyes of the religious leaders of his time. I will and must fight against accepted practices that I believe are foolish.
If God wills me to do something, it will be done.
Sometimes I feel like no matter what I’m doing I’m really just waiting for my time to end so I can die and get to where I truly belong- but then I remember I’m here for a reason.
My mother has told me that God has great plans for my life, but her purpose in life was to raise children who had great purpose in serving God’s kingdom. Time will tell.
God is already teaching me to be a more effective witness.
I truly do not believe I will ever stray far from my faith again.
God has answered all of my prayers, and for that reason I’m very careful about what I pray for.
Why would we not do our best to serve God when He’s given us eternal salvation?
At one point every Christian was lost, and had to be born again.
God is bigger than any obstacle I face in the real world.
I have not met a single minor who was strong in a faith they were not brought up in, or with the help of a church or by parents strong in the faith.
My Mom made me promise not to give up my faith in college!
If you’re confused, God will tell you what to do.
My plans fail most of the time, but God’s plan never fails.
Anyone who reads this and isn’t a Christian will think I’m crazy, but the Christians will have mixed reactions.
Even when I don’t take initiative and go meet other Christians, God leads them to me.
Even though I have nothing, I’m guaranteed that God will provide.
Making decisions in life is awesome, especially when I let God do it for me.
I thank Jesus for making me a Bible study leader and pray that he will make all of the sessions worthwhile. My first Bible study was awesome. God provided us with an in depth spontaneous discussion about The Bible- everything from the role of men and women to whether those who have heard of Jesus can go to hell to hermaphrodites. We got through the first five verses of Ruth! We barely talked about our planned text.
My year in the Christian frat house was strange. It’s been mostly good, but bad in a few ways. Spiritually, as a unit, we seem unified. I’ve been disappointed in the group at times, but each guy has given me something to remember individually.
May God continually keep me on an exciting and unpredictable path.
Jesus at Calvary, resurrection, clear cut salvation, and the existence of hell are essential to setting apart Christianity apart from other religions.
The God of the Jews was the first unseen God that nobody knew what it looked like.
I believe Christians are the only ones who let people believe what they want when in power. Most Muslim states are total and hardcore Islamic.
God guided me to tell him to seek God’s will.
Have you ever crapped and had it be the same size of what you just ate? I just did it with a bratwurst. Only a permissive God would allow me to write about my toilet experiences like this.
I’ve noticed that only God gets people unpissed off at me when I’m in trouble.
God convicted me of speeding, one more thing that will make me a relic at age 19.
I noticed a Bible translation in King James that I believe could be taken as an erroneous statement that was wrongly added. (Romans 8:11) I don’t know what this means to me. I grew up reading King James. I’m left to wonder how that could happen to GOD’S word. I know it’s GOD’S WORD but why would God let it have even the SLIGHTEST blemish? I pray that God will inform me of why this type of thing could occur.
I really do need a day alone with God.
God loves, lives, and forgives.
To this day, nobody has outgiven God.
God saved me from skating off a hill. Thank God!
Today I got my government book back after I prayed for it, a real life lesson of “ask and ye shall receive that your joy be made full.”
I can rest on the fact that if my plans are God’s will, they truly will happen.
As long as I remain humble, I will always do great things.
It’s amazing how God places us in and out of the situations and places we’ve been in.
God told me to write about why Christianity is the supreme religion of the world with my English paper, but my roommate erased my almost done paper entirely. Perhaps that’s why nothing I planned that day worked out at all. However I forgot on accident. The power of God is amazing. I don’t even know the full power God has, but I take it for granted every day.
Many people are turned off by fire and brimstone preaching, but that doesn’t mean it’s not effective or it’s wrong to preach like that. God has commanded me to be somewhat different after all God has commanded me to start taking notes/recording my thoughts on Bible studies and church. This is the solution to me as silly as it sounds singing very little to none, and receiving no joy from it. This happened when I unintentionally prayed for a solution.
I can feel the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in my writing. God frequently calls people to be bolder.
How ignorant I am to believe that I know pretty much everything about The Bible. (which I do at times) every time I do I learn something totally new in places I’ve totally overlooked. College is working out great because I have peace with God. God has told me this is how the rest of my life will be. I believe that once someone is saved they will have salvation because of their faith forever. From that point on, I believe that their obedience to the law is what gives them happiness, and the level of peace they have in their lives from that point on is based on doing the will of God.
There are many people who have lived who have done great things, had charisma, and were better people than most Christians. Gandhi is a good example. However I am forced to believe that even after all of his great deeds Gandhi is in hell unless he somehow came to know Jesus as his savior before he died. He was not perfect and therefore was not worthy of heaven unless he had Jesus to pay for the penalty of his sins.
I forget at times, but God has already led me to do some great things.
In reality, being a good person is truly obeying Christian law, since Christian law is the one true standard of what is right and wrong.
God has a purpose for everything that happens. I never knew that until tonight at a Chi Alpha meeting that I could potentially do greater things than Christ himself (John 14:12) although it makes some sense if you really analyze it. Jesus, is, was, and always will be the only son of God and sinless person, however look at how many people he himself actually reached. He preached for 3 years (age 30-33) in the tiny modern day country of Palestine only, and most if not all of his miracles (aside from being the sinless son of God) have been duplicated by others filled with the Holy Spirit.
It scares me when I think of how much I have unconsciously conformed to society, for example by the way I write. Is it possible to completely ignore the physical world and live in a reality of the spiritual realm at every moment of your life? Yes
God does not call all of us to do “great” things for him, but that does not give us an excuse not to want to.
There will always be evil on the earth, or rather until the end of the world as we know it.
I will only be happy doing what God wants me to do and where he wants me to do it. Theory- Even the people who mean the most to you will mean nothing in the afterlife. In the end it’s between you and God, nobody else. A weekend can change so much or so little at the exact same time. My first Christian retreat was cool. I had almost everything I could want at OSU, but realize I would have been unhappy there and thank God that I’m here at UC.
I thank God for letting me live a life of more joy than sorrow. Simpsons had a TV rating 666. Is it wrong for me to watch that episode, the entire show, or just a bad joke? Is this the subtle way of getting people used to the evil system? Am I wrong in watching it?
New rule- spend time with God before I can watch TV or any other leisure.
I believe my calling may be the things that I received as a child: God first 2. Education 3. Everything else
I really love books, but realize that no matter how hard I try to know it all I will only touch the surface of the grand scheme of things, and that’s okay.
It’s okay to be warped if you’re warped for God even though nobody will likely believe it.
I think it’s possible that God wills people to kill others, but I’m not positive. He did command Israel to take arms many times. We’re a greedy species, no matter what we have at the same time even if it’s exactly what we wanted 2 minutes ago we’ll want more soon.
God has been basking the Holy Spirit on me even when I haven’t realized it.
I thank God for giving me the patience he has. It’s so obvious to me that God is making me patient because so many people say so many stupid things it makes ME angry, but not when God is working in me. Even in the dullest of situations in our society we have options and we have to make choices to get to the most exciting things.
Other than God, everyone I know is just one of those corners of my mind. I refuse to be part of the “real world.” When it comes right down to it, Columbus and Cincinnati are exactly the same.
You can be a Christian without The Holy Spirit, but why would you want to? The Holy Spirit is what gives you joy. The rest is just obedience to law.
I’ve only had a minor impact in the world so far and I believe the only thing I’ve ever done that could have a huge impact on the world is this book.
The first step is recognizing a higher power, 2 determining which one it is, then 3 serving your God. Why does tragedy make one question the existence of an all knowing wrathful God?
Worldly government is almost as mysterious as religion.
Hell is NOT going to be a huge party.
Adam. Noah, Moses, Paul, Peter, David, and Solomon all committed great sins, EVERYONE BUT JESUS
We never know the fate of another man’s soul but it’s okay to believe someone went to heaven or hell but they CANNOT be prayed out.
How do Jews get to heaven?
Let the Holy Spirit guide you to in how to interpret parts of The Bible.
All that truly matters is serving God.
Why do I question God when he tells me what to do?
Is doing nothing evil?
Is it wrong to engage in worldly activities that give me pleasure but are not spiritually enhancing at all, but not spiritually harmful either?
Lukewarm is worst be on fire for Christ or in fire of hell
Christ usually leads ME to do things I like.
If I’m ever called to minister, I’d rather be a common man soapbox preacher than a suit and tie smoothie. If I have trouble discussing God with a Christian relative, how can I reach an unknown pagan?
God wants me to have confidence in everything I do.
I do so much better when I give the glory to God, but I can’t let that be my motivation for doing so.
Lukewarm Christians are by far the most harmful people to the body of Christ- bad for everyone
You will know God better if you know your covenant better
My crazy Catholic friends and their amazing beliefs towards Christ
The story of Jonah has a lot to it, and it teaches many great Biblical lessons
Why is it bad to believe Jonah lived in a fish/whale’s belly when we live in our mother’s for 9 months?
Satan is powerful but not omniscient, and NOT equal with God.
There are many excellent and helpful books about Christianity, but none of them are better than The Bible
God is controlling it all.
All fall short of the glory of God. I must remember I’m better than nobody. God has just led me onto a better path theft- signs destruction and desecration- toilet papered Catholic school, swearing problem, hateful attitude, hated life, gave Gunther beer, constant party goer my junior year, into pornography, hated many, racist, tried to be someone I wasn’t, lust, pride, anger, sexual sins, gossiper, strived to do what I wanted to do, deliberately disobeyed parents, mowed on Sabbath, shoved my own brother, put excessive guilt on people, badmouthed the people who have meant the most to me, threw mystery bags at moving vehicles and moving persons, social snob, tried to be different and controversial, didn’t know when to stop with my humor, only kind to friends and not enemies, not joyful in my tribulations, disrespected man’s laws, entertained notions of false religions, speeding, sneaking out, cruel to people, hated Jews and I sort of am one, tried to gain possessions, hung out with a bad crowd, lied to coach, didn’t do all I could to help people with spiritual and unspiritual matters, rode with drunk and high people in cars, questioned the will of God, went back on promises to God, wanted to die
Sometimes it’s okay to judge, if some guy is wearing a satanic t-shirt it’s probably safe to assume he’s not a Christian, although he could be experimenting
The will of God is not always going out to preach Jesus witnessed for 3 of 33 years
God does not want us to stress out too much about problems, he wants us to live life righteously ahead of acquiring knowledge of what is righteous
Does God want us to have excessive wealth and share it or have no wealth and spread Godly knowledge? I don’t know what God is telling other to do or not do
When I turn away from God I become bored easily, not the other way around
Is it a sin to be fat?
Is the downfall of man woman?
How can so many people have the knowledge they do about Jesus and not obey the law?
God often punishes the children of the wicked.
Man is born with a sinful nature. I’ve never seen a baby who didn’t destroy everything in sight.
God intends for most of us to be unknown in the grand scheme of things.
Involvement with church or alone with God?
I have been many different things and been many different people- loser to big winner, unknown to all ladies to associated with beautiful ladies, known and loved, totally unknown and unloved, faithful to God, unfaithful to God, lazy, diligent worker, attempting to gain knowledge, attempting to reduce knowledge, hated the world, loved the world, sensible and studious, crazy and lazy, many friends, no friends, close to family, dissed family, laid back, panicked, ready to move, ready to stay, thought nothing mattered, thought I could change the world, made friends, made enemies, picky eater, experimental eater, sports obsessed, indifferent to sports, hard rears to pacifist, intimidated by many, intimidated by none, respected, disrespected, good boy, troublemaker, high aspirations, no aspirations, rugged, conformist, bored, busy, proud, humble, arrogant prep, common man, relatively wealthy, broke
90% of men like women. How can we have a desire for them that isn’t at least partially lustful?
Are we possessed by demons or Satan every time we sin?
Are we filled with Christ when doing evil?
I am being called to that party at the Christian frat tonight.
I knew I was truly at college when I found myself playing video games next door with a black gangster, an Asian kid originally from Vietnam, my Jewish roommate, and two guys from Van Wert.
I do not understand how a person can come to the conclusion that they’re gay.
Life without God seems so blah, the best is kind of cool, but gets old after a while no matter how good it is. Life is almost always so-so.
THE THINGS I KNOW- WRITTEN BY ME IN 1998
Nothing on earth is permanent. We are made of dust and fade to dust. When we are born we bring nothing into the world, and surely we can take nothing out.
Jesus is the only prophet who claimed to be a God.
Jesus was seen by hundreds after the Resurrection. Buddha was seen by 1.
Jesus is the Alpha and Omega, completed the Old Testament prophecies, and said “It is done.”
Calvary and the Resurrection clearly set Jesus apart from other religious figures.
I can only know the state of condition my soul is in for sure.
God has given me plentiful amounts of money since I have tithed 10%. I had financial problems before.
There is so much I don’t know and so much I’ll probably never know.
There are many great inspirational religious books, but none of them can touch The Bible.
You cannot escape God’s plan for you.
It is fortunate for us that God does not totally annihilate the wicked. We are all sinners and would have to be destroyed.
If you can please God and glory in your tribulations you can handle anything.
I am a hypocrite.
All Christians are hypocrites.
All humans are hypocrites.
I believe a humble look is a “Jesus look” as opposed to the suit and tie clean shaven bit.
All of my prayers have been answered eventually.
The best times I’ve had doing earthly things pale in comparison to the joy of knowing I’m living my life right.
I have so much more time to do things just because I serve God.
All the acts in the world cannot achieve salvation.
God does not want us to be afraid of anything but him.
God is always the same, we just get closer to him or stray further.
Jonah lived in a fish. If a baby can live in a mother womb mysteriously for 9 months, a man can survive 3 days in a great fish.
God is very patient and forgiving with me and the rest of the human race.
There will always be rich and poor.
There will always be unsaved people.
I don’t know why God called me and not my friends. I was once like them and now they’re all drunken pleasure seekers.
God called my Mom to divorce.
My Mom prayed for a best friend for me and it was given. My Mom did not pray for my brother and it has not been given so far.
Different Christians are led to do different and unapproved things by other Christians, and that’s ok.
A relationship with Christ is the key to Christianity and salvation, not the trivial issues that too often divide Christians.
We must love nothing in the world and love all others.
I have not been able to quit any addiction without God and prayer.
I am somewhat accountable for the actions of others.
God wants us to know our covenant.
Every time I exalt myself I am humbled, and when I humble myself I am exalted.
Even when we totally do not understand, everything has a purpose.
The world does not need another star athlete, ace lawyer, wealthy businessman, or stellar scientists as much as it needs a man in any walk of life who knows God.
Democracy, education, and fun are not the solution to life’s problems.
It is amazing how much or how little one man can accomplish in one day and one lifetime.
No matter where you go, the familiar will always call.
Money is the root of all evil, and it is what most of us depend upon.
You can only have a few really close friends.
Things are constantly very slowly changing.
Even though rebelling carousing, promiscuity and other evils are the things to do when young, most regret these things in later years.
Sometimes things that mean so much to you in life quickly mean nothing.
There are always at least two sides to a story.
Many of the things which taught me the most in life were my greatest failures.
The lukewarm hypocrite Christians hurt the reputations of Christians more than anything else, including enemies.
Temptation alone is not a sin.
You cannot fully trust anybody but God.
We become old, senile, and “useless” for a reason.
I have taken many things for granted that were automatically provided for me.
Relationships are confusing.
Being forgiven does not always free us from guilt. Many scars last a lifetime.
God is with me even when I forsake him.
It is good and a gift to have sense of humor.
God does not always want us to do the best we can do. God would rather have me read my Bible than do extra credit work in a class I already have an A in.
What appears to be evil can be right. Farmer tears down birds nest three times because it’s about to be bulldozed.
What appears to be good can be evil.
God is much greater than my problems.
Satan is a powerful force, but powerless compared to God.
Sometimes we please God by not sinning and basically doing nothing.
Attitude is more important than skill.
Salvation cannot be lost. God does not allow people to be “tricked” into thinking that they’re saved.
Spiritual growth is what will lead you to lose some friendships, activities, and “fun.”
I am a totally different person than I was 5 years ago.
I must remember that there is a purpose for me, I just don’t always know what it is.
God does not always make Christians the best and doesn’t always want Christians to be the best.
God can grant me the power to do or not do whatever He wants.
I don’t want to live a life full of regrets.
It is very difficult to be a true “original.”
It is better to have respect than fear. Quite often they achieve the same result until someone gets bold enough to stand up to fear.
Repenting is realizing change is needed.
My future is always uncertain, no matter how much I try to plan ahead.
No matter how great the past was people need to keep doing things to fully enjoy life.
Hate only hurts you, not the person you’re hating.
Be careful for nothing, some of the most unhappy people in life are the ones who settled for a practical life in a safe place.
It is east to mistake friends, jobs, success and a million other things as your purpose in life for being alive.
Jesus, Elijah, and Enoch never died and Indians on reservations don’t pay taxes. Nothing in life is guaranteed.
People will always fear the unfamiliar and the unknown.
It’s very tough for people of different religions to become close friends.
Although millions are a lot like me, nobody is quite just like me.
It’s tough, but not impossible to beat the system.
Friends often change together or drift further apart.
The past is gone forever.
Forgiving someone does not mean you have to continue to have a relationship with them.
It’s tough to watch a friend wasting their life away.
Don’t regret long past events too often or strongly. They happened for a reason and can haunt you for life if you let them.
Nobody likes to diet.
I don’t like horror movies. Real life is scary enough.
At times my life has been stranger than anything I could have imagined.
There is definitely more to life than what is on Earth, and it is too good to be hell and too awful to be heaven. It is a testing ground.
COMMENTARY ON THE ACCURACY OF THE THINGS I “KNEW” IN 1998
THE THINGS I KNOW- I thought I knew, but in retrospect, a lot of the things I thought I knew turned out to be completely wrong or unknowable. Ha!
Nothing on earth is permanent. This might be true. I don’t think I’ll be around long enough to test it.
We are made of dust and fade to dust. Maybe not literally, but sounds poetic.
When we are born we bring nothing into the world. Other than our bodies, this is true. But I hardly think it’s a profound revelation that newborn babies don’t bring material gifts out of the womb.
Surely we can take nothing out. It’d be hard for a dead person to take something out of life with them. Unless they take other living beings out with them, this seems true.
Jesus is the only prophet who claimed to be a God. This is OBVIOUSLY false. I guess I hadn’t read much about non-Christian faiths at this point in my life. Sorry.
Jesus was seen by hundreds after the Resurrection. This is shaky, at best. This is only true if you believe the New Testament- and there are many reasons to find its claims suspect. No reliable evidence shows that Jesus was seen by anyone after he died, if he existed at all.
Buddha was seen by 1. I meant Buddha was seen by 1 person after he died. This is suspect, at best. I believe my claim for this was based entirely from one Christian sermon I heard one time. There’s no reliable evidence that proves Buddha defeated death.
Jesus is the Alpha and Omega, completed the Old Testament prophecies, and said “It is done.” This is highly likely to be false. The existence of a supernatural miracle worker named Jesus is highly suspect. Even if there was an actual prophet named Jesus, he was not the beginning of the universe, and will not be the end of everything either. The Old Testament prophecies Jesus supposedly completed aren’t enough evidence to convince millions of Jews to convert. There is no reliable evidence that Jesus completed a single Old Testament prophecy. If Jesus existed, he may have said “It is done.” That’s a vague statement. Saying it doesn’t mean he’s right, even if he actually lived and said it.
Calvary and the Resurrection clearly set Jesus apart from other religious figures. Clearly it doesn’t to the majority of people in the world today. There’s no rational reason to believe that Jesus overcame death and ascended magically to heaven a short time after coming back to life after having been dead for three days. There are several other supernatural claims that resemble the Jesus myth, but no evidence that any of them are true.
I can only know the state of condition my soul is in for sure. The existence of the soul is speculative. There’s no evidence that souls exist.
God has given me plentiful amounts of money since I have tithed 10%. I had financial problems before. God never gave me anything. I lost 10% of my money at this time of my life to the church. Fortunately, I made no more than $7.50 per hour working part-time in those days. My “financial problems” merely meant that I didn’t get more pizza with buddies at that stage of my life.
There is so much I don’t know and so much I’ll probably never know. This was true then, remains true now, and will almost assuredly remain true as long as I live.
There are many great inspirational religious books, but none of them can touch The Bible. While The Bible is the most popular choice for a religious text among humanity, there is no way to prove The Bible is superior to any other holy text. I believe there’s no reliable evidence to support the truth claims of any holy text that makes supernatural claims. This makes The Bible and every other supposedly holy book equally worthless.
You cannot escape God’s plan for you. There’s no evidence for God. Even people who believe in God have no way to prove that God has a plan for their life.
It is fortunate for us that God does not totally annihilate the wicked. We are all sinners and would have to be destroyed. Humans aren’t inherently wicked or inherently good. Morality is a concept that’s initially taught to children. It isn’t an inborn trait. Various cultures and individuals teach different moral concepts to their children. Mentally capable adults are able to choose their own code of morality, but there isn’t a way to prove that one code of morals is 100% accurate. While most humans seem to display traits that others would define as imperfections, wicked is a subjective term that can apply to everyone or nobody, depending on how the word is defined.
If you can please God and glory in your tribulations you can handle anything. There’s no way to know how we can please God. It’s rather difficult, or possibly insane, to feel glory in the midst of serious tragedies. There’s no evidence that proves pleasing God or glorying can allow people to cope with pain effectively.
I am a hypocrite. I was at times, even though I tried not to be. I still am at times, even though I try not to be. This is true.
All Christians are hypocrites. Not necessarily. I don’t know every Christian. Even some of the ones I know genuinely seem to be good people who do their best to live according to the morality they proclaim they believe in.
All humans are hypocrites. Not necessarily. I find few babies hypocritical.
I believe a humble look is a “Jesus look” as opposed to the suit and tie clean shaven bit. There are a lot more humble looks than just the “Jesus look.” Not that there are any existing photos of Jesus, but at the time I envisioned Jesus as a guy with long hair, a beard, and clothes that were rugged.
All of my prayers have been answered eventually. This was false, even at the time. But I was able to write off unanswered prayers as “God is just waiting for the right time.” God never fully healed many potentially life threatening illness. Some of the people my brothers and I prayed for died despite our prayers. Many hungry people still exist, despite my genuine prayers to eliminate starvation. I eventually realized that prayer simply doesn’t work, but it took me years to admit it.
The best times I’ve had doing earthly things pale in comparison to the joy of knowing I’m living my life right. I was always doing “earthly things.” I never left Earth. I would’ve classified what I saw as “spiritual” in a different category at this time of my life. But there’s no evidence of a spiritual realm. It’s fine for people to have a conceptual reality they enjoy experiencing. But there’s no way to accurately prove the value of subjective personal experiences to others. But I still see value in living my life in right ways. I’m glad I tried to then too, even though my judgment was questionable at times.
I have so much more time to do things just because I serve God. I genuinely believed this at the time, but there’s no evidence that any particular God exists. Even if there was one, there’s no way to prove that one is serving God. Each person can make up their own definition of what it means to serve God, but it’s much more honest just to say that you try to live well and do what you believe is right without referencing a deity.
All the acts in the world cannot achieve salvation. This may be true. It may not be possible for humans to achieve eternal salvation. But at the time I was referring to salvation in heaven with Jesus. I see no evidence to believe that salvation with Jesus in heaven actually exists. Even if I’m wrong and there somehow is a heavenly eternal Jesus party, there’s no clear cut way to get an invitation. A lot of different people make up a lot of different rules about Jesus and his eternal party requirements.
God does not want us to be afraid of anything but him. There’s no proof of the existence of a god. Even if there is a God, there’s no evidence that proves humanity should fear it.
God is always the same, we just get closer to him or stray further. There’s no proof of the existence of a God. Even if there is a God, there’s no evidence of it changing or remaining the same. Nearly everything in the observable universe tends to gradually change.
Jonah lived in a fish. If a baby can live in a mother womb mysteriously for 9 months, a man can survive 3 days in a great fish. This is ridiculous! It’s highly improbable that a guy lived in a fish for days just because a book says so. The existence of quite common cases of childbirth is an inappropriate way to justify a belief in an unconfirmed, never been repeated supernatural claim.
God is very patient and forgiving with me and the rest of the human race. There’s no evidence to prove that God is patient or forgiving.
There will always be rich and poor. This isn’t necessarily true. But it probably will be in my lifetime.
There will always be unsaved people. According to Evangelical Christian truth claims, this could be considered true. But there’s no good reason to believe that Evangelical Christian truth claims are accurate.
I don’t know why God called me and not my friends. I was once like them and now they’re all drunken pleasure seekers. God never actually called me to do or be anything. I was a lot like my friends at times. I wish I had been a drunken pleasure seeker earlier in life. I had to do a lot of catching up to my pals for a while.
God called my Mom to divorce. My Mom believes so. I don’t. But I’m still glad she got divorced.
My Mom prayed for a best friend for me and it was given. My Mom did not pray for my brother and it has not been given so far. This is ridiculous. If I made more than one friend in life, by definition I’d have to have a best friend. If my brother had more than one friend, he also had a best friend. If this were true and my Mom wanted my brother to have a best friend, all she would’ve had to do was pray for him to have one too!
Different Christians are led to do different and unapproved things by other Christians, and that’s ok. Christians are compelled to do various things that other Christians don’t like. It’s fine that there are disagreements about how to act within Christianity. But the actions Christians take may be awful.
A relationship with Christ is the key to Christianity and salvation, not the trivial issues that too often divide Christians. This could be considered true or false. It depends on how the individual interprets Christianity. It is true that trivial issues too often divide Christians. But I now believe that all theological issues are trivial in light of much better options, such as science.
We must love nothing in the world and love all others. This is false. It’s logical to love lots of things in the world. Food, clothing, shelter, and oxygen are pretty easy to love for many humans. I don’t think we should love all people. Do you love child rapists, people who harm your family, or psychos who attack innocent people for no logical reason? I don’t and don’t think others should either.
I have not been able to quit any addiction without God and prayer. This is false, although I didn’t know it at the time. Any addiction I had, I was in fact able to quit without supernatural help. I may have thought prayer helped me quit addictions, but there’s no evidence that proves that prayer is any more effective than any other form of “positive thinking” to overcome unhealthy dependencies.
I am somewhat accountable for the actions of others. I’m not sure if this is true or not. I can have a small amount of influence on people in my immediate environment. But I don’t think I can help that a kid in China chose to skip school today.
God wants us to know our covenant. There’s no evidence of any specific God, and there’s no evidence that any one particular “covenant” belongs to God.
Every time I exalt myself I am humbled, and when I humble myself I am exalted. I’m not generally exalted when I act humble. I’m almost always ignored by nearly all of humanity, whether I act proud or humble. But I’m usually humbled when I try to act mighty, because I believe I look ridiculous when I try to act like someone who has high status.
Even when we totally do not understand, everything has a purpose. I have no way to know if this is true or not. My belief is that life has no inherent purpose, but each individual can choose to create their own.
The world does not need another star athlete, ace lawyer, wealthy businessman, or stellar scientists as much as it needs a man in any walk of life who knows God. This is false. There’s no evidence that anyone knows God. Even if someone “knew God” there’s no proof that this person would have superior achievements compared to a lawyer, businessman, or scientist.
Democracy, education, and fun are not the solution to life’s problems. This may technically be true, but only because there are no solutions to many of life’s problems. Everyone experiences some pain and eventual death. If democracy actually exists, it can be considered negative or positive. Education is generally a highly beneficial force in the world. Fun is a positive experience for nearly everyone. Problems aren’t universally solved by anything. Each problem must be examined individually and taken for what it is.
It is amazing how much or how little one man can accomplish in one day and one lifetime. This may be true or false, depending on the man.
No matter where you go, the familiar will always call. This may be true or false. Some broad elements of life, such as water and food, tend to exist in some form in every culture on Earth. But being among an Amazonian village society produces few similarities to the living environment of an upper middle class British accountant who lives in London.
Money is the root of all evil, and it is what most of us depend upon. This is false. Evil is a concept, not something that can be proven to exist. Negative things took place in the world before the human invention of money. Money may have several unpleasant aspects in the present, but it’s not the root of evil. It’s true that many people depend on money to live well.
You can only have a few really close friends. This is false. Some people have hundreds of people they consider close friends. Others may have none at all.
Things are constantly very slowly changing. This is true.
Even though rebelling, carousing, promiscuity and other evils are the things to do when young, most regret these things in later years. This may be true or false. I believe it’s more false than true. Not all young people are rebellious, partying, sex fiends. Not all young folks regret making the choice to rebel, party, or have sex. I’m in my early 30’s and I wish I’d done a lot more rebelling and carousing in youth. I’m glad I never got a girl pregnant, but I wish I’d had more oral and anal sex with women when I was younger.
Sometimes things that mean so much to you in life quickly mean nothing. This is true. Putting sometimes at the beginning of a sentence is a nice way to be right about anything that isn’t 100% false.
There are always at least two sides to a story. This is false. Sometimes people have stories based on things that happened to them when they’re alone.
Many of the things which taught me the most in life were my greatest failures. This is true. But I’ve also learned from successes I’ve had too.
The lukewarm hypocrite Christians hurt the reputations of Christians more than anything else, including enemies. This has no way to be proven. I believe that an irrational system of beliefs hurts Christians more than anything else.
Temptation alone is not a sin. This is true. I don’t believe in the concept of sin, but being tempted is a natural part of life. Sometimes it’s fine to give into temptation, like the temptation to eat dinner. But some temptations are best to avoid, like killing people who annoy us.
You cannot fully trust anybody but God. This is false. There’s no reason to trust a supernatural being that has no evidence of existing. Many people have reasons to trust others. Whether they decide to “fully” is up to them.
We become old, senile, and “useless” for a reason. This is technically true. We become old if we survive long enough. People become senile for medical reasons. Whether one ever becomes useless in life is subject to debate, but I think we all become useless in day to day affairs after death.
I have taken many things for granted that were automatically provided for me. This was true then. Although I’ve tried to be grateful for what I’ve been given, I still probably take some things for granted.
Relationships are confusing. This is often true. But some people are able to simplify their relationships and make them as easy to understand as possible.
Being forgiven does not always free us from guilt. Many scars last a lifetime. This is true.
God is with me even when I forsake him. This is false. There never was any supernatural power with me. There isn’t now. Labeling God as a “him” is comical.
It is good and a gift to have sense of humor. I have no way to prove it, but I believe this is true.
God does not always want us to do the best we can do. God would rather have me read my Bible than do extra credit work in a class I already have an A in. This is false. God does not want anything from us. If there is a God, I don’t think it cares about what books humans read or what grades they get in school.
What appears to be evil can be right. Farmer tears down birds nest three times because it’s about to be bulldozed. The first sentence is true. The second sentence is non-sense as written. I was referring to a sermon I heard where a farmer tears down a bird’s nest multiple times to prevent the birds from being demolished by a bulldozer.
What appears to be good can be evil. This is true.
God is much greater than my problems. This is false. There’s no proof that God exists. I don’t like my problems, but I don’t think a supernatural being is greater than them.
Satan is a powerful force, but powerless compared to God. This is false. There’s no evidence that Satan exists. Satan and God appear to be equally powerless according to evidence.
Sometimes we please God by not sinning and basically doing nothing. This is false. There’s no way to accurately prove we can please God.
Attitude is more important than skill. This is often false. Being able to demonstrate competence is usually more useful than controlling how one projects their emotional state. But there are exceptions.
Salvation cannot be lost. God does not allow people to be “tricked” into thinking that they’re saved. This is false. Eternal salvation may be impossible for all humans. There’s no evidence that can prove whether or not God permits individuals to believe false things about salvation.
Spiritual growth will lead you to lose some friendships, activities, and “fun.” This is false. There’s no way to accurately measure spiritual growth. What people perceive to be spiritual growth may lead to loss, but it can also lead to gain.
I am a totally different person than I was 5 years ago. This was somewhat true and somewhat false. I retained some personality traits, but changed in many significant ways.
I must remember that there is a purpose for me, I just don’t always know what it is. This is false. There’s no evidence that any of us have a purpose unless we choose or create one.
God does not always make Christians the best and doesn’t always want Christians to be the best. This is false. There’s no evidence that God makes anyone win or lose at anything. It is true that Christians aren’t always best at everything, but it has nothing to do with God.
God can grant me the power to do or not do whatever He wants. This is false. There’s no evidence that God grants anyone anything.
I don’t want to live a life full of regrets. This is true and was true then too.
It is very difficult to be a true “original.” This may be impossible to prove, but I believe this is true and believe it was true when I wrote it too.
It is better to have respect than fear. Quite often they achieve the same result until someone gets bold enough to stand up to fear. This may or may not be true. It depends on the specific situation.
Repenting is realizing change is needed. This is mostly true. But a few folks repent foolishly to make a lame effort to get things to remain the same.
My future is always uncertain, no matter how much I try to plan ahead. This is true. Nobody is capable of fully controlling events that haven’t yet taken place.
No matter how great the past was people need to keep doing things to fully enjoy life. There is a high probability that this is true. While I can’t prove it, I believe most people understand that being an active participant in present affairs is important for people to feel that their life is enjoyable.
Hate only hurts you, not the person you’re hating. This is false. Hate may not hurt you. It may help you to hate things that are unjust. Some types of hate hurt other people a great deal.
Be careful for nothing, some of the most unhappy people in life are the ones who settled for a practical life in a safe place. This can be true or false. It is wise to be careful when in a highly unstable or dangerous place. Some people who settle for a practical life are miserable, but some are quite happy.
It is easy to mistake friends, jobs, success and a million other things as your purpose in life for being alive. This may be true or false. Some people may be fooled into falsely thinking one of these things is their purpose for being alive. But others may consciously choose to select one of these things as their purpose. Others may choose to have them be elements in their life, but not their entire purpose for living.
Jesus, Elijah, and Enoch never died and Indians on reservations don’t pay taxes. Nothing in life is guaranteed. This is false, but funny. There’s no evidence that proves that these Biblical figures never experienced death. It’s quite possible that some Indians on reservations pay taxes. But I think this was meant as a sort of comic relief from the rest of the list. It’s true that in a universe filled with uncertainties where any of us can die at any time, nothing in life, not even death or taxes, is absolutely guaranteed.
People will always fear the unfamiliar and the unknown. This is false. Some people fear the unknown or the unfamiliar, but some accept them without feeling fear.
It’s very tough for people of different religions to become close friends. This is false. This tends to be true for close minded, brainwashed, or absurd folks.
Although millions are a lot like me, nobody is quite just like me. This is true, although I’m not sure that anyone would want to be like me more than any person in human history if they had the power to choose.
It’s tough, but not impossible to beat the system. This may be true or false. The system is a vague definition. I believe I intended the system to be representative of the general rules of capitalist society. If this is the case, it’s impossible to prove. But it does generally seem to me that most people who try to defeat the ways of society fail miserably.
Friends often change together or drift further apart. This may be true or false. There’s no way to prove if this is true or not. I believe this is often true, but not always.
The past is gone forever. Until someone invents time travel, this is true.
Forgiving someone does not mean you have to continue to have a relationship with them. This is true.
It’s tough to watch a friend wasting their life away. While there’s no way to prove this, I believe most sane and rational people accept this is true.
Don’t regret long past events too often or strongly. They happened for a reason and can haunt you for life if you let them. This is probably mostly true. There are legitimate reasons why people should regret harming others. But most of the things people feel guilt about are fairly trivial.
Nobody likes to diet. This is almost true. There are a few sick and twisted sadists out there who might like it though.
I don’t like horror movies. Real life is scary enough. This is true and was true then too.
At times my life has been stranger than anything I could have imagined. This is true.
There is definitely more to life than what is on Earth, and it is too good to be hell and too awful to be heaven. It is a testing ground. This is false. There’s no definite evidence that proves the existence of an afterlife. If people choose to believe in one, so be it. But there’s no proof that supports the validity of an afterlife. There’s no evidence of heaven, hell, or this planet being a testing ground of any kind.
Out of the 97 things I claimed to know in 1998, only 17 of them are unquestionably true in my present view in 2010. Perhaps it’s wise that I make a lot less claims about what I know than I used to.
EVEN MORE embarrassing REVELATIONS FROM THE AUTHOR
THE FIRST SONG I EVER WROTE
I was thinking about the song “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” by The Supremes when I wrote my first song lyrics while I was a missionary in Cleveland, Ohio in the summer of 1999 at age 20. Earlier that day, I’d heard The Supremes while walking by a car wash. While my “tune” by no means matches up with The Supremes musically, their song influenced me to jot down these lyrics.
We love you, you know that God
You’re awesome and powerful Lord
You are for all of us God
And we just can’t get enough
Lord Jesus we love you now
We praise you and worship you now
We’ll need your spirit now
To help us when times are rough
You saved me from death o Lord
You kept me from evil ways o Lord
You work in my life o Lord
I don’t care about other stuff
Jesus keeps blessing me
Jesus came to set mankind free
Jesus gives us light to see
His grace is good enough
SECOND TUNE I EVER WROTE
This is an original and is basically just a series of questions with an incredibly lame ending. Calling it a song might be a stretch, but I had a basic rhythm in mind that I can’t recall now.
What is the purpose of life?
Should I go or should I stay?
How can the world contain so much strife?
How should I live my life today?
Does anything I do truly mean anything?
How can I know right from wrong?
Will I be happy with many things?
Is there more than women, wine, and song?
Who can I trust and believe?
What did the past teach me?
Is there an error in the way I perceive?
Will the future ever reach me?
What should I do with my time?
How does one love and how does one hate?
When did I become desensitized to crime?
Is the evil in all innate?
How can I help a suffering Earth?
Have I truly reaped what I’ve sewn?
Was there a destiny for me before birth?
How many opportunities have I blown?
With all of the questions on my mind
How can I sleep at night?
What’s my motivation to be kind?
Does anyone understand my plight?
How can we best help the poor?
Is it possible to love all?
Why do people always move?
Why in the world do I feel so small?
Is there a way to turn back the clock?
How and why do I wear a mask?
What will cause the Earth to rock?
Who has the answers to questions I ask?
Am I doing the best I can?
Why have I seen the death of friends?
Does my life have a plan?
Should I try to keep up with trends?
Why does it seem that evil has rule?
Why don’t people love me like my mom?
Is there any use in trying to be cool?
Can you believe human being created an H-bomb?
How, when, what, where, and why should I pray?
Is there a way to prevent conforming?
How can I prevent being led astray?
How do I experience awesome transforming?
Is it possible for me to be a good father?
With all that occurs how can I be bored?
Do all of these people really want to be ignored?
Do we realize how we affect others?
Why do we always do as we’re told?
Why does money separate two brothers?
Why are we afraid to explore?
Is there anyone who’s willing to be bold?
How should we react to the newest uproar?
What does it mean to be the best?
What do I use to cope?
Why does it all seem like a never ending test?
Is there anything that provides hope?
What makes someone truly wise?
How hard should I try to win?
How can I recognize those in disguise?
What exactly is a sin?
Why can’t we look people in the eye?
How did we get so stressed out?
Why are so many afraid to die?
Is there any way to avoid doubt?
Is anyone willing to fight for change?
Can we do anything aside from wait?
Why is everything so very strange?
How can we determine our fate?
Will an answer ever reach us?
The answer to all is definitely Jesus!
MY FIRST POEM
I wrote this at some point in 1998, at age 19.
WHILE MY FRIENDS DRINK I PRAY
They say they have good times when they drink
They get excited and look happy for a while
They have confidence they didn’t have before
They dance, laugh, talk, and sing
Like in the first grade
They claim it makes them more attractive
They say it opens up a new mysterious realm
One is unable to comprehend until experienced
Everything they get through beer I get through God
But God is permanent and beer washes away
ME AND THE HOMELESS, 1999
I’ve always wanted to have an in-depth conversation with a beggar, and it happened tonight. He obviously had problems, but was intelligent. He was a white guy of average stature who went to Moeller high school. He didn’t have a job, but said that he could. He lived at his rehab center for 120 per month. He didn’t know what he wanted for his future. He got government aid, but was still hungry. I took him to an Arby’s and talked about what Jesus meant to me. He was polite but stated his belief in a higher power that could not be a God that others served? He was paranoid and insisted that I keep quiet. He had parents he kept in contact with, but they did not know fully about his problem.
I bid him goodbye. He desperately wanted someone to talk to, but I wanted to go. Walking and reflecting I felt I did not do enough. I did not rely on Jesus enough and did not expect a miracle. I thank God for the experience and know I will be better prepared for next time. I pray that God will guide me in how to deal with the poor, mentally ill, and others who cannot properly function in our society.
1999-STUFF I DIDN’T DO WHICH I WISH I HAD DONE MORE OF:
Make a musical instrument
Play basketball, soccer, and hockey when warm
Make pretty pictures
Read more of The Bible
Go more in depth with amigos
Learn another language
WHY I CAN NEVER FALL IN LOVE WITH A WOMAN
I wrote this in 1998. It is one of the many things I wrote at the age of 20 that I find completely embarrassing in 2010. Once again, I provide you with my past idiocy for your enlightenment:
Would need someone who had a stronger Christian faith than mine, someone who made me want to be a better man who would understand why my priorities are the way they are. I could never love any woman unless I could see she loved Jesus more than me, someone who would put up with my bizarre sense of humor at least and ideally appreciate it, ignore the fact that I do not maintain myself well would have to be the kind of girl I could marry. A girl who could tolerate my past sins towards relationships attractive girl who would almost have to be a virgin, tolerance of the fact that I’m stranger than most, willing to see that my past experience with relationships was bad.
In 2005 I fell in love with a real woman for the first time. I don’t really know why, but she seems to love me back. In fact, we’re still together! She’s told me several times that there’s no way she ever could’ve been in the same room with the 1998 version of myself, yet alone have an intimate relationship with a guy like that. Once again, she’s right.
ACTUAL COMPLIMENTS I GAVE TO PEOPLE
Amazing discipline, ability to command respect, prayer, humility, openness, has a faith that makes me say wow, wise and prudent in decisions, but isn’t cheesy
Can sense peace just by looking at him, speaks his mind boldly, not afraid of challenges or what others think, one of the few who makes me feel passion when singing gospel songs, excited, motivated, striving for all the right things
Incredible the way he reconciles mainstream Evangelical Protestant Christianity with his Catholic background
Does typical Christianity, but accepts those who don’t
Overcame adversity to get his life, not afraid to call people out, love and concern for his little brother, dealt with breakup of close relationship, patience, responsible
Heart for service, peoples smart, appreciation for randomness, honest with all, highly tender, Renaissance man, enjoys simple things in life, sincere, strong work ethic, strong ties to family
Compassionate in prayer, passion for life, interested in people and events, generous, leadership, vision, diplomatic, boyish good looks, good listener, commitment to close friends
Not afraid to admit he’s wrong, eccentric in only the way ginger ale drinkers can understand, dedication to duties, enjoyment in serving others, balance of work vs. play
Non-judgmental, downplays status, good story teller, laid back, not easily angered, goal oriented, steady faith, good at outreach, meek, peaceful, keeps positive memories, makes people think
I almost can’t believe this was actually me who wrote these things. I have to wonder what life would’ve been like had I made different choices, but the truth is that just like everyone else, I’ll never know. But it’s scary for me to think about how I believed some terrible things as a Christian.
“Amen is the perfect word to use to end a book.”- God