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I waver between believing desperately in a force for Good and Kindness and Parity in this world and total Atheism.
Those who are "legitimately/ specifically" religious DO NOT READ FURTHER!
GOD is NOT easing my burdens, making a place for me at "HIS TABLE" I have no use for be-jeweled crowns, or arranged seating charts by burdens and goodness.
No GOD is taking my part or my place, Jesus is not cleaning grandpas urinals, or wiping feces off the walls. Mohamed is not standing between me and grandpas disgusting leering glances. Buddha is no where when I twitch,stressed out trying to sleep. Yahweh, Jehovah, RA, Zeus and the Prophet Moroni are NOT walking my steps with me and doing the work or soothing the aches of mind and body. I have prayed, begged, hoped, wished, VISUALIZED, pay'd it forward, meditated on it, slept on it and yearned for years of nothing but the same BS. IF I believed in a GOD of endless, repetitious misery, I would be an enigma in that I would have actual proof "of".

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There are several things wrong with this world. 1. Too much sin. 2. Too much stupidity. 3. Too much dime store theology. 4. Too many religious people living in a fantasy world. What I'm tired of are simplistic and yet spiritually sounding pat answers for painful situations that people just arn't always open to being authentic about. My SIL, who is a uterine cancer survivor since 2001, and I joke about various hymns that just don't ring true anymore. Like the verse from a hymn "Every Day with Jesus is better than the day before" As Debra has commented all to often the day before was a long time ago. The other things I'm fed up with is the classic testimony which seems almost expected that "well my life was going to hell, but then I met Jesus and now I"m successful, healthier, ect." as if becoming a Christian is a means to the American dream. I'm often glad for people to say they are praying for me, but some people are so judgmental that I'd rather they not pray for me at all. I'm not sure if this is even close to your statement, but it's my response.
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I don't know if you'll find this funny at all, but I always say "God is a funny guy"!
While my mom was in the hospital, I had her mechanic come over and disconnect the battery cables to her car (she was still driving occasionally, but had been getting lost a lot-it was WAY past time that she stop). Before she went to the hospital, she had her mechanic come over (because her car had a dead battery). She was unable to process the hospital, or anything else when she arrived home, and I felt it was "safer" for her NOT to drive. It was the FIRST time in my life, that I had EVER done something behind my mom's back, and the guilt was horrible. Three days after she got home, I was on my way over to her house to take her dinner to her, and I saw her car parked outside of the house (usually kept in the garage). My response was "oh sh*t" (kind of the same thing that I felt when she caught me smoking when I was a teenager. As I walked up the stairs to enter her home, I heard people talking (she NEVER lets ANYONE into her home). My response was "Whiskey Foxtrot Tango". As I entered her kitchen, there were two neighbors eating dinner with her (which she purchased for them), because these people had fixed her car for her! The irony here, is that these people are the SAME ones she'd been screaming and yelling at for over a year for doing anything and everything that she didn't like in their own yard! My response was "Alrighty then". So after a week of covert planning, and feeling terrible about what I had done, it took my Alzheimer, Dementia'd, Schizophrenic, and Bi-Polar mom all of about 2 hours to undo what I had strategically planned and implemented! My responses "Oh crap, Whiskey Foxtrot Tango, and Alrighty then" took about 5 minutes! God is a funny guy!~
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Hi, JSomebody, although I am an unapologetic believer in God, I read your sharing anyway. Hope you don't mind. I agree with you that the praying for you phrase is dropped sometimes in the same way that many folks ask "how are you," or say "have a nice day." As for faith, it is each person's right to believe, or not. It's faith, not science. I appreciated reading your thoughts. Great discussion you started! Best, Isabel
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I am going through similar...though taking a break helps me...a day or two off that I can count on...while a Hospice volunteer and bath aide help out...I am sorry for how you feel...I am at the end...yet God/Jesus is helping me ...as long as...I keep my focus on one day at a time...getting through one day...I take Calcium Magnesium to help me sleep about 600mg of the combination...you might need adrenal support...a good health food store will show you the vitamins for this...take care of yourself...we have to do that for ourselves.
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Thank you every body, I appreciate your thoughts very much.
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Jesus said that in this world we would have trials and tribulations so it shouldn't come as a surprise for those of us who know this. I've lost a daughter who was 17yrs old, a sister at 38(with 4 kids), a son at 30(just had a baby) and my mom 3 years ago. I wavered in my faith for sure but kept looking up to God because this world is falling apart and our walk with him, although tough at times, brings everlasting benefits in the long run. I've cared for my 86 y/o dad for 3 years who has Alzheimer's and has been pretty rough with me as his primary caregiver, but I know that my surviving son will be there for me when I'm in need because I've "sowed" enough so that I may reap the rewards in heaven and because he's a sweet heart who has suffered with me. You might want to ask for some help w/grandpa, consider day care or assisted living facilities, or if you have to pay someone to give you a break once in a while. You don't have to do this alone. When cleaning up after him, pray that should you become disabled one day there is someone there to look after you. Consider what this person must be feeling not being able to care for himself.

GOD BLESS YOU FOR SURE......
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I agree with you 100%. I have renounced to find a meaning in all of this. One of my mantra is (Ursula LeGuin) "God plays dice with the universe". I can't find the rest of the quote in English, but it says, more or less: "if you want a certitude, you have to create it by yourself"
let's look for our certitude, Jen!
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What I don't like is human beings trying to make God into the image that WE think He should be. When he doesn't live up to OUR expectations, we get mad. That's like complaining gravity is not acting like we think it should be acting. Gravity is going to do what it wants, cause it's more than us. (Although I do not like the effect gravity has on my aging body!!)
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Thank you, Jsomebody, for sharing your thoughts as well. Enlightening sharing all around.
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Hey J-- You know everybody that believes in God is going to have to read this post when you said not too.Its like telling a kid not to look in the closet-we have to look. I was pretty pissed off at God for taking the love of my life and my childs dad.I haven't found anything positive about his death yet nor has my child,but I keep thinking I will figure it out sooner or later.Tough times bring out the character in a person,tough times sometimes prepares you for something great you yet don't see that will come on down the road.Alot of folks on here have the character because of there challenges they didn't have before.I personally like people praying for me because it sends positive vibes my way-don't like flip religious answers no more than I like someone saying 'how are you''? with out meaning it. I sure wish there was a way you could have a long break.
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Tenn you are great!
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You have every right to be angry and question. Some of the things others can say definitely do not help and actually awaken more anger because they are clueless and totally invalidate your feelings. It is so invalidating to have someone say these things when you are in the trenches and they are sort of looking down and saying "I am praying for you" or "Just give it to God." Do these people offer to help? It does not sound like they are really practicing what Christ (or any of the other prophets of various religions) taught his disciples to DO.

It is also very invalidating and maddening when someone tells you to buck up because it could be worse - like think about what the one who you are caring for is going through (like you don't) and then of course some day you might need someone to care for you. These folks are not listening to your pain and just letting you vent honestly without worrying about judgment. It is really all about them and their own inability to accept the situation if the shoe was on the other foot.

If God really does exist I think he should be big enough to deal with our anger and questioning about life and why things are the way they are. If God does not exist, then we have not lost anything.
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Thank you all for your answering my post.
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I hear, but trying to make me feel guilty about my grandfathers needs is not gonna do it. I have had to have others wipe my ass. I very well may need it again some day, but I am not a freaking pervert or a bigoted annoying jerk. That fact I do not love the loved one I have to look after colours all my dealings with him. Listening to him moan excitedly watching men/fathers kiss little girls on TV makes me want to puke. No, I do not feel sorry for him, we all age, we all need care and god or not, it is messy, frustrating and a chore. And someone praying to their god for me about it doesn't do anything. But so what, it is what it is till it isn't anymore. AND I "pray" that it ends soon.

As for expecting life to be the pleasing journey, not even close. There is so much misery in this world, one would live in constant despair to think a just a loving god was behind it. If god is all powerful, why do so many have to suffer. Toughens us up? For what? Where are we going that some how being a three year old raped and murdered is going to provide insight and moral toughness for the next existence? And if it is so...What does the rapist learn in his/her journey through life? The murderer, the ones who benefit from the harm they do others? No soul trying in life there?

First, god is all powerful, then bad things happen and I am told, no god lets these things happen for a reason, then I am told to forgive...

So which is it, is god infallible and therefore we have no complaints as all was pre-designed for our maximum experience ratio on earth or is god apt to make mistakes and screw up and therefore we must forgive transgressions?
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In simple words, is God powerless or cruel? Probably neither of them. I turned this question to a friend who studies oriental mysticism and he told me that I am posing the wrong question, as the world as we see it, it's a world of illusion. It does not make me happier!
Keep searching, Jen. Try to do it from a certain distance... If you can!
This is what I am trying to do. With days on, and days off...
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BTW, if you look around, there is always somebody/something that protects you. For me, it was the black cat you see in the tattoo. Look around, I am sure you have one of them. Sometimes it is difficult to see... but, it exists.
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Kitty and all,

God is big enough to handle our anger, but we hessitate to vent to God for some reason. However, look at the Psalms. Did not David vent his anger to God. Yes, David did and quite bluntly at times. I like the Psalms in times of anger and grief for they help give words for feelings that sometimes our mind cannot find but the Psalmist already wrote.

Look at Job and all of his so called friends plus his wife who told him to "curse God and die". Talk about feeling invalidated in your suffering, that poor man was all alone. His judgemental friends had basically a Santa Clause view of God, i.e. if you are not naughty but nice, then God will be good to you, but if you are bad God will sent you sticks for Christmas. Notice that God never actually answers Job's questions. Instead he asks Job some questions which basically is God's way of saying 'Job you didn't bring this on yourself, but you were not around when I made the world, so I want you to trust me. If anyone has read the book Toxic Faith, it point blank says that the biggest reason for athiesm is a Santa Clause view of God that so many churches teach. To go into some past of one great hymn, "It is Well With My Soul" there is more to the story than just the testimony which inspired that hymn. Later another great tragedy struck that family, but this time some people in the church he helped build began to wonder if some sin in his life had not caused that to happen. Again, Santa Clause theology. The poor man became broken hearted and left America with his wife and friends to live the rest of their days in Israel. I could go on about others in history whom we have on some pedistal but we often don't know their very human biography. Far too much of American Christianity totally lacks any really deap and solid theology of suffering for we have all too often made the world, the American dream, sucess in marriage, family, and work the end and our faith and the Bible the means when in fact that is treating God more like an ATM and the Bible like the password for us to get what we want, and get it right now.
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Great thread - I also am a believer who disobeyed you and read on. But seriously, I have had an ATHEIST friend spout off some "don't worry be happy" (a-) theology at me. So I thoroughly understand why that's offensive - you are in a very sad situation, grievng - and someone wants to blow that off by telling you how happy you should be. And then you find yourself not only still unhappy, but feeling guilty about being unhappy! The only solution for me was to read and remember what the Bible really had to say about that - one is that we are expected to dance with those who dance and mourn with those who mourn, NOT to tell them to quit whichever they are doing so they can feel like we want them to feel - and TWO - imagine what it would be like if one of these "dime store theologians" (love the phrase there!) walked into the Garden of Gesthsename and tried to tell Jesus he shouldn't be distressed. :-) Any religion that clams to be a pass to a stress-free, sorrow-free life is a load of phony baloney.

The battery cable story brightened my day - good one! And I thoroughly identify with the guilt of doing the right thing against parent's wishes. Its hard, very hard, whether or not said parents are able to circumvent. My mom likes to tell people she is allergic to any food she does not want, so if I don't sneak around her back and tell them about this habit, she could end up with nothing safe to put on her tray. She hates when I talk about her and polices my going to talk to her nurse or anyone, so I have had to get clever and go out one entrance and in another to do it without her knowledge.

That said, I'll take all the prayers I can get, however imperfectly intentioned. The God I believe in is highly tolerant of human foibles, including my own, and who am I to tell anyone how to pray or what to pray for? There are people who have not been through what we are going through, who have not had to learn the difference between joy and happiness, who will need our hugs and prayers for sure if ever reality should ever strike their little world.
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I put the disclaimer in because I know how sincere and deeply held most peoples views on their personal faith are and no reason they shouldn't be. I agree and don't want some one praying at me and someone saying there is no god and buck up is equally as irritating, Truly there is a lot none of us want to hear. If it doesn't feed our souls it just passes through and perhaps is useful to another no harm.
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Thank you Jsomebody for putting theses thoughts in writing, I personally felt I was the queen owner of screaming(into my pillow) at the God I was raised on, after 4 years with my Momster everyday getting worse and worse, I tend to wonder if people who speak of "miracles" are hallucinating, like the momster does occasionally. Never an answered prayer, only worse everyday.
Thanks for posting this.
Mimi
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years ago when i was in so much stress , i cried so hard in my bathroom , didnt want my kids to see me crying ,
i cried so hard and said out loud , THERES NO GOD ! by that time my mom appeard and smiled at me . i bawled oh mommy oh mommmm i need u and she just smiled and fade away . i bawled and bawled , how i miss my mom and it was just a split secs she poped up and smiled when i said theres no god . im thinking mmm she showed up to tell me yes there is god .
called my dad , i didnt tell him what was going on . just told him im just stressed out and down in the dump and told him what was my pblm . he said oh linda , something better is coming at your way .
i thought long and hard about it and snaped out of my depressions state and start lookin forward to something better coming at my way .
yes there is god , he s out there . answered or not answered ,
there is help out there ! go get one . dont jump up cuz someone barked and growl . go outside and let him bark and growl all he wants . u are not cinderlea . u are human begin .
if pa was at the nursing home he would have to wait hours to be his turn of care . so when he hollars i let him hollar till i get me myself done . then i ll go see what he wants .
be strong girl ! bark right back at em and let them know ure not going to tollerate it anymore , hire a help ! get a merry or a sara !!! go away and have urself a time alone . i go outside and sit and enjoy my time , pa hollars alot anyway wanna wanna wanna , then he realized i aint jumpin anymore so he apprecates what i do for him . i AM NOT CINDERELA ..
girl there is god , other wise we wouldnt have this agingcare dot com . :-)
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Hardebeck, That is so intersting,I have had several of those occurances myself.Its been when I least suspect it.I was mowing the yard and ran threw big nasty wasp nest,didn't realize it[my dad was allegic to wasps extreme]I heard his voice just as clear--RUN--RUN. I stomped the pedal to the medal and took off-just a reflex to the yelling-looked back saw wasps behind me-I would have been stung bad if he didn't hollar.Another occurance was similar to yours ,I was mad and upset and I heard Jeff and felt his arms around me.He stayed a good while that time,it was the longest occurance-if I ever doubted GOD I don't anymore.Just in case anyone is wondering I don't drink or do drugs not even the antidepressants.I could see him as plain as day,he did not look sick anymore.
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Momstersgirl,

Sometimes the God/Jesus we were taught about as children is a far cry from a biblical view of God from the entire Bible and not just selected parts of it. I don't know if you have ever heard of the book, but "Your God is too Small" is a very good one that deals with people's misconceptions of God.

Some Christians over-super-naturalize life as if a demon is behind every problem and a miracle for the good just takes place like magic for they view God like the gene in the bottle. Thus, their magical view of Christian spirituality and discipleship has no room for a honest theology of suffering and dealing with it in a way that does not sound like everything is rosy . Such naive presumption normally crashes on hard times and these people, sad to say, are some of the biggest back sliders. The American Dream, which is an illusion like the Norman Rockwell paintings, and Christian living are not the same nor does one produce the other.
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Being raised as a person of faith, it has been particularly challenging for me to refrain from "blaming" God or wondering what in the world is he doing to me. These last few months have tested my faith to the core...not only with my Mom's care, but with a job loss, a possible loss of my home, and having the hub move out of state to find work. I find that even the littlest things set me off now and I wonder if I can endure any more.
I sometimes say, "God is quiet now." Before this time in my life, I always felt his presence in large and small ways. Now, I don't. I wonder if I am just not listening or allowing myself to be guided or if I am not praying for the right things. I often think that maybe even God has "too much on his plate" and perhaps there are bigger problems for him to deal with than mine.
I do not think that my core beliefs or faith have been altered, however, I have never felt more alone in my life. If this is a test I am either passing with flying colors or failing miserably.
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Although I am a firm believer in God's infinite wisdom and will for MY life, I do have to agree with you on the "I'm praying for you" comments. Did they ever stop to think THEY might have been put into my life to LEND A HELPING HAND? Doesn't The Word of God say to VISIT the widows and those who are in prison? THIS SEEMS LIKE A PRISON AT TIMES. And I'm the prisoner. Prayers are VERY helpful, because, "if we ask not, we have not." God knows all, but He wants us to acknowledge Him and ask when we need something. He just wants to be involved, and for us to remember to talk with Him daily. It isn't a bad thing, and the crosses each of us have to bear is to BUILD us into what we need to be. If life were just a butterfly on a breeze everyday we would have no reason to ASK for help, to need others, because admit it, if we didn't have our elder parent to take care of, we have had it instilled within our spirits to assist others and help others when they need it. And we would find someone ELSE to give our devotion to.
We pray, but we act upon the needs of others. I believe with all of my heart that THOSE prayers from those people are heard, but I also believe FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD. It is these same people who are in church every Sunday morning, go out to eat afterwards, then go HOME and flip the t.v on. It would seem after hearing a sermon about "do unto others as you would have them do unto you," it would light a fire under their butts to go DO something to help somebody else's cross a little lighter. That is what I would want others to do unto me, help me out here, I'm doing my best to try to keep my head above the water.
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Most people are in their own little world and do not see what the truth is next time someone tells you that they will pray for you tell them you prayed that someone would cook a meal for you or sitt for two hrs. with your loved one so you could take a nap or a shower beause you are going 24 hrs a day-and would they be that person.
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Rcimso5 You may have to call the police and tell them she should not be driving esp. now that those [ friends ] fixed her car anfg they will give her a driving test otherwise since it is knowledge how you disabled her car Gid forbid she has an accident and hurts or kills someone guess who will be in jail not her.
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Jsomebody, if I were in your shoes and living your life, I don't think I'd believe in a god either.
I questioned God many times why I got stuck with an abusive, mean mother. I asked him why he took my wonderful loving father and left me with the witch to care for without any help from my sister. Over the yrs, I have just chalked it up to life. We are born and we die . . . and the stuff inbetween happens. I feel it's up to us to choose, cope, deal with, remedy, laugh about or cry over. Sometimes we can find answers, sometimes we make mistakes. How you cope in your life is up to you and should not be open to judgement by others.
I happen to believe there is a God. On the other hand, I respect your right to not believe. I think some people are sincere when they say they'll pray for you, others just say it as a cliche. On another thread someone said they'd pray for me (because I said I didn't agree with their answer and statements) but they weren't sincere and I found it all to be very silly. Because of what you've said, I see that it doesn't help people who don't believe in a god, to hear "I'll pray for you" and I'll never say it again especially if I can't do anything for them. Having said that, may I say that I WISH and HOPE something good will happen in your life to bring you some happiness whatever that may be. Nobody deserves to be as unhappy as you are.
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Jsome,
Sorry dear. Didn't mean to offend. Have you actually read the BIBLE?
There is much stregnth, endurance and courage in it. From your writings I thought you could use some. I know abuse myself (about 40 yrs of it).
If you prefer I will no longer pray for you, but will continue for others.
My appologies.
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You may pray for me or not I do not believe it changes any thing, if it gives you comfort to feel you are sending kindness and hope to the universe or a sentient being for guidance and support there is nothing wrong with that.

I have read the bible, I regard it as fiction and morality tales written by men.
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