a discussion with my parents


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[FONT=&quot]This is something I feel I should write. I walked into the kitchen of my parents house and felt scared that my mom, dad and I are gonna end up in hell. I wasn’t sure why I felt this way. I mean that on one hand I’m not sure why I felt they would end up in hell. I’m not sure why I'm debating that a place called hell exists or why people should have to wonder if they will end up there. I’m also not sure why I was scared if that might be the case. Both scared that I might go there, and worried that my parents might.

My dad I think is an atheist, or at least his position is that no one has any reason to assume any belief without proof is valid. My mother says she doesn’t doubt that Jesus may have felt he died for our sins, and she thinks he was like any great prophet who wanted to help us live consciously and lovingly. I asked her if she felt like she knew that Jesus was really her savior or if she felt she might be denying god. She said she had no way of knowing those things without taking a leap of faith and she said she couldn’t discount other religions because she thought there wasn’t only one right way. I asked her why and she said because there are other religions and we can’t discredit the rest of the world because of the politically imposed of the Christian religion. I asked her if she ever tried to test Jesus to see if he was real. She said she might have when she was younger and surrounded by the religion, but not anymore. She wont try now (As I write) she wasn’t taught to test Jesus when she was younger. (50s and early 60s small town Wisconsin) she said either you have faith or you don’t. I Said there has to be a reason people believe something. She said every culture has faith in something, and people have had faiths before Jesus. She said people with blind faith end up trying to discredit evolution and other things and that what I am doing with her is pointless.

I said I was asking her to be honest with her feelings and she said she strives to be honest and that it doesn’t feel to be dishonest and that it isn’t helpful in relationships. So I asked her again if she ever asked Jesus if he was real and if he could come into her heart. The extent of her praying, she said, had to do with asking that if god knows what’s going on, please help me to direct my family in the best way possible so each of them can be decent people. She also asked god to please help her son find himself so he can be happy in life. I asked her whom she thought she was talking to when she prayed to god and she said I don’t know. She then said that prayer works as a sort meditation for some people and thinking about things quietly helps them figure things out.

[/FONT]She says she thinks I am stuck on worrying about one right way or else hell, and that I cant think past that. And that for many of her Christian friends, prayer helps them think more lucidly or rationally about their problems.

[FONT=&quot]She asked me if she was making sense to me or if I was going to discredit it because it didn’t fit in with the way I was thinking about things at the moment (I’m terrified of hell we will try and see why later). I told her I sometimes felt that Jesus was real. In a spiritual way. I say that this means I have to see what I think about the bible, since you learn about Jesus through the bible.

I asked her to sometimes ask Jesus if he was calling her. But she said she wasn’t really looking for it and had a lot of things going on in her life. She says that doing tai chi and learning about Taoism is very appealing to her and also tolerant of other cultures. She thinks other spiritualities will answer more of her questions for her. I asked her to still try sometimes but she said she would never have done something like that. And that she would have to be more open to that thought process in order to do something like that.

Sometimes the minister of her father’s church says open your hearts, let him in during service. And she says that in this setting (she visits her father a few times a year) she feels to think about the things in life most important to her like her family. I asked her if she ever felt like Jesus was coming into her heart. She said that was too mysterious of a question for her. She said one can have a good feeling by thinking about problems in life and thinking clearly about them and making positive steps towards fixing problems and that is what she thinks about when she prays, and that some people attribute this feeling of clarity to god.

I asked her if she ever thought she was feeling gods love in her heart. She said maybe when little because then she was told to label the thought as god, but she has learned to think for herself and realize that these feelings might come from a combination of things. I asked her if she felt deep down that she knew that the feeling was from Jesus. She said no. I asked her if she was sure, she said yes. Asked her if she was positive, she said I was pushing it and that she was trying to be reasonable with me.[/FONT]
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[FONT=&quot]I asked her if she ever told god she knew she was a sinner and that she needed forgiveness or saving. Or if she ever asked god for forgiveness. She said she had needed guidance many times, and that she had problems. But she didn’t consider herself a sinner and thought that viewing people as sinners was too demeaning. I asked her if she ever felt moved by thinking about Jesus dying for her sins or forgiving her. [/FONT]
It seems to me that your mom thinks Christianity is a blind faith. That is completely not so. Here's a few reasons why you can trust the Bible and Jesus:

1. The Bible is the most accurate history book in the world. Everything we know about history comes from written documentation we find. Such documents are considered accurate when there's other documents that back up it's claims. What we know about Julius Caesar, Socrates, Plato, etc. are written documents we found about them, with maybe 10 other documents to back it up. Most were dated to be written hundreds of years after the person's life.

The Bible has thousands of historical documents backing up the accounts of the Old Testament, and New Testament. In fact, the documents about Jesus and the New Testament were written within 50 years of his death, and were circulated throughout Christians while the EYE WITNESSES of Jesus were around. So if they were not accurate, people would know. Now eye witnesses is an important thing, in a court of law. I can't think of any other historical document that was written and circulated by and during the lifetime of the eyewitnesses of the event. Plus the documents are very consistent with each other too.

2. The Bible was written over 2,000 years (from the Old to the New Testaments). There are books written at different times. There are prophecies in some books that were fulfilled generations after they were written, and just like it says. There are hundreds of prophecies in the Old Testament that not only were very specific, but were fulfilled just how it said.

Also there are about 200 prophecies about the Messiah that were all fulfilled by Jesus. Prophecies like: his heritage, where he would be born, when he would be born, what he would do, how people would react to him, when he would die, how he would die, etc. Some prophecies about his death were written hundreds of years before crucifixion was even invented. And the prophecies about the messiah were accurate to-the-day.

There's no way man could prophecies so accurately unless they were influenced by the almighty God, who exists outside of time. Plus no other religion in the world has prophecies like the Bible.

3. All of Jesus's disciples (except for John) died horrible deaths for proclaiming that Jesus was resurrected from the dead. The disciples knew Jesus the best. One by one, they suffered and died instead of denouncing Jesus and the Resurrection. Now, who would willingly give up their life for something if they knew it was a lie? If Jesus never was resurrected like they said he was, why would so many of his followers die for the sake of saying he was? Many other of the people Jesus appeared to after the resurrection died too.
personally, I don't think u go to hell if u try to be a good person while ur here, irrespective of what faith u hold true...

sounds like maybe ur mom is right, and ur thinking too much about these big ole questions...

u can't convert ur own mom, unless she wants that...

maybe u should go and have a game of football instead? or get urself down the gym, or something?

one day all ur questions will be answered....