Category Archives: free thinkers

Things I miss.

Hey Everyone! It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. I hope everyone in the  blog world has been doing well. 

I’ve had some stuff weighing on my mind lately. I currently live in one of the larger cities in the south. As with any city, we have a fairly large population of homeless people. A few years ago, I helped a local faith based organization feed the homeless people breakfast in one of the larger city parks downtown every week. I would wake up on Thursday  mornings at 4:30am, get ready, and drive 45 minutes into downtown. Once there, I would help make up lunch bags for the people to take with them once they had their breakfast. These bags always contained a handwritten Bible verse written on an index card. There was always a time of devotion, prayer, and then time to circulate amongst the people for about an hour while they ate their breakfast. We were there every Thursday, no matter the holiday, rain, or cold weather. There was no less than 50 homeless people that came each week. Sometimes there were over 100. One of the volunteers went around to the people and took individual prayer requests. Most of the people that came (come, I still get the prayer list every week in my email) are regulars. They have been coming for years and still have the same requests. These requests range from needing shelter, transportation, a job, healing of health problems, to overcoming addiction.

It was while I was volunteering with this group that I began to have questions about God. I eventually couldn’t keep telling them that God heard their requests and would make it better because I didn’t believe it. I quit going to the park on Thursdays. Of all of the things that I have given up in the name of atheism, this is what I miss the most. I miss the people and their stories. Every once in a while, there were happy endings and stories of triumph. I miss sharing this. There was a man that came every week that was 88 years old. He had 13 children, lung cancer, and was homeless. He was always thoughtful and had the most amazing stories to tell. The other homeless people helped to watch over him as he was elderly and frail. I will never forget the last time I spoke to him. It was December and was pretty darn cold outside. He had a thermos that he got the volunteers to fill with coffee. He handed it to me and told me to hold it to keep my hands warm while we talked. That particular morning, he was bothered and very emotional. He kept saying “I can’t figure out what God wants with me? What am I supposed to be doing?”. I had no answer. That was one of the most helpless feelings I have ever had. In hindsight, I would have loved to have put him in  my car and taken him to the nearest shelter and told him to call family to take him in. Knowing this man, he never would have allowed this to happen. He passed away about 10 months ago. I miss seeing his name on the prayer list each week. He never had a selfish request.

 

This is what bothers me. The same people come every week and have the same prayer requests, yet nothing ever changes. I wish I could tell them that they are the master of their fate, not some invisible man in the sky. They are the reason behind their circumstance and ultimately have the power to change it. So, I have decided to make up my own snack bags with my own positive message. Who knows, I may even put together my own group and set out to make a difference. I would love to be able to show that religious organizations are not the only ones that can make a positive difference in the lives of others. They do not hold the monopoly on goodness and compassion.Image

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Know your bible

Know your bible.

I read this…and then coffee came out of my nose.

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Attention all non-religious parents: The Good News Club wants our kids.

I was recently reading a post over at Critic of Christianity’s blog regarding being a child proselytizer in the past. It struck a nerve with me as I have recently been dealing with the local chapter of The Good News Club at my son’s school. He began coming home and saying some bizarre things and jumping to irrational conclusions. For example, last week he said a dog pooped in the pavilion on the playground at school. I made a comment to the effect of “Who would let their dog make a mess and not clean it up?”. His calm and immediate response was “Maybe the devil did it.” My response to this of course was bewilderment. I asked him where he learned this stuff and was alarmed that he said school. More specifically, on Thursday’s when he meets with The Good News Club at after school care. I told him immediately that there was no such things as monsters or devils. He is having a hard time coming to terms with this thought because he believes in God. He even said Jesus lives in his heart. We used to be regular church attenders but haven’t been in over a year. He remembers all of this and TGNC only reinforced it. His dad and I contacted the school the next day and had him removed effective immediately. The teacher actually asked for me to explain why we were removing him. I tried to be respectful and told her that his dad and I did not agree with some of the things that he was learning. She asked me to elaborate, so I did. I told her that we were not religious and furthermore I did not agree with teaching children to proselytize. She let it go after that.

The night before we spoke to the school, we did a little research on The Good News Club. If you have a few minutes to spare, watch the video that is posted. If you have school aged children and TGNC in your area, beware. They state point-blank that their target age group is ages 4-14. I am ashamed that I did not realize that my child was learning things that are potentially confusing him. We had an age appropriate conversation and talked about the fact that some people do not believe in God and also that different people believe in different things. He knows that this is okay and there is nothing wrong in it. I’m not sure at his age how much he understands, but we are really trying. It is amazing how concrete and non-negotiable a child’s mind can be at his age. He literally will believe almost anything that you say. That is why they target such a young age group.

Here is the part that REALLY upsets me: The after school care teacher told me that she is active in teaching this class and that my son is going to be one of two children not participating. She said that they were made to sit outside of the library and be quiet for an hour while the other kids participate. I went to a Learning Express in order to buy him educational games to play while he waits. My child is being isolated because he will not be participating in a Christian activity. We are currently composing a letter to the Board of Education regarding this issue. I am not happy with the thought that no one is watching my child because they are busy indoctrinating other children. I do not know a lot about the law regarding issues that involve the Separation of Church and State in public schools. I know that TGNC has been able to get around it in the past and won a lawsuit and can stay on the premises of public schools. If anyone has any thoughts or ideas, please send them my way. Thank you for reading!

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I thought you all could use a laugh on this fine Tuesday.

Kirk Cameron may not have had a lot of credibility before this video, but he sure doesn’t have any now. I know that some Christians are irrational and delusional in their belief, but this guy took it a step too far. He obviously didn’t think this theory through. Somewhere in the world, there is a Christian panicking because their banana did not come with a “pull tab” and wondering what does it all mean? Here’s hoping Kirk Cameron is the only one gullible enough to swallow this cupful of crazy.

I don’t know about you guys, but I feel like an absolute genius after watching this.

Cheers and Happy Fat Tuesday!

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“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble-makers. The round heads in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status-quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify, or vilify them. But the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
~ Jack Kerouac

“Here’s to the …

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