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Peace The Human

A very confused "Christian" teenager

9 posts in this topic

Hello and thank you for taking time to read this, it means something just to think that someone else saw it.

So, as of a few months now, there's been times where I just question my Christianity in general. I'm not too fond of church, I've never been really fond of reading the bible either but I do want to love God. Most times I feel like I'm close to Him and that our relationship is getting better and then other times.... Well, not so much. Sometimes it seems like I run into roadblocks in everything from school to family to love to friendships to college and career choices and just about everything in between. I guess my question is, is it terrible that I'm not extremely religious? Is it still possible to have a relationship with God and not necessarily go to church? Also, is this whole feeling like God is a silent parent who just doesn't want me to do anything just part of being a teen and learning the ropes?

Your answers are all greatly appreciated.

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Hello and thank you for taking time to read this, it means something just to think that someone else saw it.

So, as of a few months now, there's been times where I just question my Christianity in general. I'm not too fond of church, I've never been really fond of reading the bible either but I do want to love God. Most times I feel like I'm close to Him and that our relationship is getting better and then other times.... Well, not so much. Sometimes it seems like I run into roadblocks in everything from school to family to love to friendships to college and career choices and just about everything in between. I guess my question is, is it terrible that I'm not extremely religious? Is it still possible to have a relationship with God and not necessarily go to church? Also, is this whole feeling like God is a silent parent who just doesn't want me to do anything just part of being a teen and learning the ropes?

Your answers are all greatly appreciated.

 

Hello; I am a fellow Christian.  I love Jesus Christ very much, and I try to purge all the religion I can out of my life.  I have read the bible cover to cover and know probably more about it that your pastor does.  However, I don't WORSHIP the bible like many people in the United States seem to.  I am not going to heaven because I read the bible; I am going to heaven because I forfeit my will for my life in place of Jesus' Plan for my life.  I haven't "gone to church" in a very long time, and I am not any closer to damnation for not going to any congregation.

 

The only thing I recommend is to ask the Holy Spirit to become clear when communicating.  You seem to have a desire to communicate with Jesus directly, and you can do that by the power of the Holy Spirit.  There is nothing wrong with you, and you don't have to settle for a silent relationship with Jesus.  It took seven years after I got saved by Jesus Christ to be able to communicate with the Holy Spirit directly, and I started wondering the same thing you are wondering at just about the time I asked the same questions you are asking now.

 

Being honest about how your faith is tested ends up resulting in the biggest strengthening factors as our faith matures.  Continue to ask the hard questions, and your faith will be strengthened accordingly.  The number one person to ask along the way whenever these things happen, is Jesus Christ.  Make sure you don't forget to ask Him.  I guess the best thing for now, is to ask Him to become clear to you...

 

=)

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Hello and thank you for taking time to read this, it means something just to think that someone else saw it.

So, as of a few months now, there's been times where I just question my Christianity in general. I'm not too fond of church, I've never been really fond of reading the bible either but I do want to love God. Most times I feel like I'm close to Him and that our relationship is getting better and then other times.... Well, not so much. Sometimes it seems like I run into roadblocks in everything from school to family to love to friendships to college and career choices and just about everything in between. I guess my question is, is it terrible that I'm not extremely religious? Is it still possible to have a relationship with God and not necessarily go to church? Also, is this whole feeling like God is a silent parent who just doesn't want me to do anything just part of being a teen and learning the ropes?

Your answers are all greatly appreciated.

Hey Peace the Human, welcome to the site! I don't think it's terrible that you're not extremely religious. However, from my own experience I have felt that going to church has helped deepen my relationship with Jesus Christ. I have also run into similar roadblocks such as yourself and experienced The God is silent pattern treatment as well as bouts of confusion. During that time, i have often questioned my Christianity. But, i read somewhere that during those moments of isolation, loneliness, depression is a time when we can become closer to God. Why? Because he can understand what suffering is like (Jesus suffered).

I think a medieval philosopher named Thomas Aquinas once wrote that we can determine that God exists from 5 proofs. One of the proofs is from design. In the world around us we see ample evidence of design - the bird's wing, designed for the purpose of flight, the human ear, designed for the purpose of hearing, the natural environment, designed to support life and so on. If there is a design, there must be a designer. The Designer is God. As a Christian, I think this good news because that would mean that God has a hand in existence, in our existence. If you feel confused in your Christian walk. I think that is really ok. You could talk to other Christians about your struggles and receive useful input. I am sure many other Christians have faced similar circumstances. You are not alone :).

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Hey man! I remember feeling like you do in 8th grade. I knew God was real because a couple of times I felt his presence in church and I was healed of cancer but God felt distant. I decided to read the Bible for myself to see what the big deal was. To my surprise it is actually a really good read. You should get a teenage bible with todays language in it. The key is you have to seek God first and then He will draw closer to you. I soon realized I could look at the table of contents in the Bible and the spirit would guide me to what I should read for the day! A book of the Bible just stands out. I still do that to this day. I also feel Gods presence all the time and It seems like He is quicker to answer prayers for instance i was lonely at the time and he brought me a lot of good church friends through a new church I got invited to.

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Hi there :) I hope you don't mind a non-Christian answering your question. I was raised in a secular household, so I don't have experience with doubting the beliefs I grew up with, but I have had moments when I doubted the religion I later converted to. In those moments, two things helped.

 

The first was sticking to the rituals. My religion has a strong focus on orthopraxy (doing the right thing rather than believing the right thing): it's considered better to give sacrifice even if you're not sure that who you're giving it to is real, rather than not giving it at all. So I kept up with my daily rituals, even if it only meant saying a half-hearted prayer in the evening. In other words, I kept trying. In your case, I would suggest that you keep praying, keep reading your Bible, and if you feel up to it, keep attending church. If you let your faith slip away, you're going to lose it. I know that sounds obvious but if you don't want it to happen, you need to actively work to keep it.

 

The second thing that I did is a lot less obvious, and it took me a long time to accept it. I let myself doubt. Instead of repressing all the questions I had, I wrote them down and explored them. I asked people of my own religion for answers, and people of different religions for different perspectives which challenged my worldview. It's scary to let the doubt take over, but the more you wonder why you do this, why you believe that, the better you will understand your religion and your God, and the stronger your faith will become. Because faith in itself is good, but conscious faith is solid - while blind faith is at best shallow, and at worst dangerous.

 

It's okay if, through this process, your previous beliefs change. Find the ones that you feel comfortable with, and that you believe are true. If you end up less religious than you were before, that's okay. There are millions of spiritual but not religious people, Unitarian Universalists, agnostics and atheists in the world. Even among Christians, not everyone attends church every week. If you end up changing denomination or even religion, that's okay too. And if your beliefs don't change at all but just become stronger, congratulations! You are now a confident and knowledgeable member of your faith.

 

Everyone doubts their beliefs from time to time, even the most religious of us. I bet even the Pope and the Dalai Lama have moments when they feel discouraged by all the sorrow around them, and wonder if there really is a meaning to it. It can be especially hard as a teenager when your responsibilities are growing, your body is changing, your critical mind is developing and you start to question everything from your parents to your religion. But feeling this way is completely normal, and you're not a bad Christian because of it. Don't worry. You'll figure it out. :)

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Hello and thank you for taking time to read this, it means something just to think that someone else saw it.

So, as of a few months now, there's been times where I just question my Christianity in general. I'm not too fond of church, I've never been really fond of reading the bible either but I do want to love God. Most times I feel like I'm close to Him and that our relationship is getting better and then other times.... Well, not so much. Sometimes it seems like I run into roadblocks in everything from school to family to love to friendships to college and career choices and just about everything in between. I guess my question is, is it terrible that I'm not extremely religious? Is it still possible to have a relationship with God and not necessarily go to church? Also, is this whole feeling like God is a silent parent who just doesn't want me to do anything just part of being a teen and learning the ropes?

Your answers are all greatly appreciated.

Hey there, Peace The Human. :)

First of all I want to answer in an all-encompasing way and just tell you to don't worry. What you're feeling is normal, especially at your age, when confusion and roadblocks are the norm for most of us at that age. I think the most important step in getting out of your confusion, you already made and that is the will to love God.

You said that sometimes you feel close to Him and other times you don't. That's also completely normal. The thing is that if your relationship with God is based on feelings, you will always feel this way. What I've learned since I became a christian is that feelings, although an important part of how we are built, are not always to be trusted. (especially when we are believing lies) I recently read an article of a christian writer, about what he found, while studying the Bible, about what "having faith" means. And his conclusion (that I resonated with) was that it meant to take God at His word. It is something that you believe beyond what you feel at a moment in time. It is a commitment that you make and follow through. Like in any relationship in which the initial sparks fade away, while still believing in your initial choice, you start digging deeper to search for something more substantial.

Is it terrible you're not extremely religious? At this point in your life this would be far from my concern. It's easy for me to give myself as an example. I was partially raised religious. I was baptised at birth like all christian-orthodox people. This is the official religion of my country. The religious holidays are respected by governmental law so my family kept these holidays like everyone else. But my family was not spiritual. I haven't even heard about a relationship with God until later in life thanks to one of my sisters who changed her religion. Now, I'm not here to talk about religions or denominations. I found God or rather He found me when I had no and still don't officially consider myself under any religion except my faith in Christ and His word.

Is it still possible to have a relationship with God and not necessarily go to church? When I made the commitment in my heart to follow Him I wasn't going to any church. I will start to go to church but this is because I want to not because I have to. It's a need that started to build up in me while my faith was growing, a need of having fellowship. But if you don't feel this need at this time that is very ok. I think you are going through an important period in your life. And it's important for you to make the most out of it and keep asking questions. 

An important thing that I advise you to do at your age (and any age in my oppinion) is to learn. I can't stress this enough.(teenagers although feeling confused tend to belive they know it all) Be open and learn as much as you can. About God, about yourself, about this world. Your confusion while being bred by feelings it is also born out of lack of knowledge and truth.

And besides all of this, as a christian I'm sure you're familiar with the concept and practice of prayer. Prayer was an important part of building a relationship with God in my life. Whenever I would feel confused, lost, sad, angry, you name it (doesn't have to be a negative feeling), I would bring it all before God in prayer. Now, not everytime I would feel like praying, sometimes not even now. But because I understood how important it is, ( think of it as the time you take to invest and build a relationship with God) once I started to treat it like a commitment, beyond my circumstantial feelings, I noticed how things chanced for the better. I see prayer like an almost supernatural thing. I've seen it's power and it's an amazing gift/tool/weapon-for-good even, that believers where given and I advise you to use it.

Also, is this whole feeling like God is a silent parent who just doesn't want me to do anything just part of being a teen and learning the ropes?  I don't know if it's part of beeing a teen and getting over this feeling would be part of maturing as an adult but it would surely be part of maturing as a christian, of any age. God speaks and He can be louder than you can imagine right now. And He wants the best for you. Don't forget this and don't believe cheap lies.

 

God is more alive than you feel right now and I advise you to just test Him.

*if you're curious, this is the article: (p.s. I'm not advertising for this author, I just enjoyed the article.)

 

http://www.startingwithgod.com/knowing-god/what-is-faith/

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I don't know why I always find myself disagreeing with everyone.

First of all

 

Is it terrible you're not extremely religious?

Yes, yes it is.

But not for the reasons you think.

Being religious is a very misunderstood idea or concept. If you believe in anything, anything at all, even if you believe in an absence of something, you're religious because you've placed faith in that belief whether it's a belief or way of life that you come up with yourself or if you based it off science or what you may deem to be logic.

 

To not be religious means you're indecisive.

But to be clear, it isn't you that's terrible. It's the world around that's caused this that is terrible.

 

Is it possible to not go to Church and have a relationship with God?

Yes.

 

Also, is this whole feeling like God is a silent parent who just doesn't want me to do anything just part of being a teen and learning the ropes?

Okay first of all, why do you believe God is silent? And second what do you mean "just part of being a teen" and "God doesn't want you to"?

 

Don't answer that was rhetorical.

 

What kind of question is that?

(That was also rhetorical)

​It's more like you're trying to get some strangers online to approve whatever it is you're thinking of doing.

​I'm not going to give any approval if I don't know what you're doing.

 

Here's the thing, rather than trusting the rational or idea of a bunch of us online, think about someone you trust. Someone you feel who won't judge you for who you are but loves you as a person. Go and talk to that person about advice like this.

 

I'm not saying this to be mean, or anything like that.

Think of this sort of like a test.

If there is someone who loves you unconditionally and will talk to you about your doubts, then that person has the love of God within them and is in your life for a reason.

 

Go talk to them, it's better than talking to us on some forum. Believe me.

Oh, and God bless and good luck in your search for answers.

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Hello and thank you for taking time to read this, it means something just to think that someone else saw it.

So, as of a few months now, there's been times where I just question my Christianity in general. I'm not too fond of church, I've never been really fond of reading the bible either but I do want to love God. Most times I feel like I'm close to Him and that our relationship is getting better and then other times.... Well, not so much. Sometimes it seems like I run into roadblocks in everything from school to family to love to friendships to college and career choices and just about everything in between. I guess my question is, is it terrible that I'm not extremely religious? Is it still possible to have a relationship with God and not necessarily go to church? Also, is this whole feeling like God is a silent parent who just doesn't want me to do anything just part of being a teen and learning the ropes?

Your answers are all greatly appreciated.

 

I obviously don't think you're a terrible person for not being very religious. And I could give you my own answer for why God is so silent, but you may not like it very much.  ;)

 

I suppose my advice to you is to think about why you feel it may be terrible to not be religious. If you aren't fond of church, and aren't fond of the Bible...why continue to identify as a Christian? Is it because of family or societal pressure? Because of fear of Hell, or some other post-life consequence for not believing? Or do you genuinely perceive the existence of the Christian God, and feel driven to better worship him in some way?

 

I say this not because I'm trying to win you over to my way of thinking, but because I think everyone is better off if they follow their own heart when it comes to religion. You can't force yourself to believe, no matter how badly you may want to; similarly, you can't force yourself to lose your faith, either. So, somewhat contrary to the fact that I'm giving you advice in an Internet forum, I think you should do your best to ignore what everyone around you is saying, and try to focus in on what your own mind is telling you is best for you.

 

Good luck OP; you'll be fine no matter what you decide.

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. I decided to read the Bible for myself to see what the big deal was. To my surprise it is actually a really good read. You should get a teenage bible with todays language in it. The key is you have to seek God first and then He will draw closer to you. I soon realized I could look at the table of contents in the Bible and the spirit would guide me to what I should read for the day! A book of the Bible just stands out. I still do that to this day. I also feel Gods presence all the time and It seems like He is quicker to answer prayers for instance i was lonely at the time and he brought me a lot of good church friends through a new church I got invited to.

I have the same testimony concerning the Bible as armytiger...

And I hope this will help you Peace the human...

Have you got answer ?...

I pray that God cand draw you closer to Him and lead you in the good way in the name of Jesus.

When you seek Him you will find Him.

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