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July 20th, 2011
06:20 AM ET

Finding God in the Mississippi Delta

By Tommy Andres, CNN

Moorhead, Mississippi (CNN) - The Mississippi Delta is the kind of place where everyone shows up for a funeral.

It was on such a day in 1997 that Lucas McCarty and his grandfather had come to pay their respects to a young man who'd been killed in a car crash.

John Woods was there to bury his son.

Lucas and John had met a handful of times before, but that's the day John found his new son and Lucas his "black daddy" – each one delivered in his own way from a tragic past.

John worked for Lucas’ grandfather on his catfish farm as an “oxygen man." Catfish are fickle creatures, and if they don’t have enough oxygen, the whole lot of them can go belly up in minutes.

He’d gotten the job a decade earlier after getting out of jail. John had killed his brother-in-law on a lonely Delta road, according to T.R. Pearson's “Year of Our Lord,” which tells about John and Lucas. John had been indicted and tried for first-degree murder, but the trial resulted in a hung jury. He was then indicted and tried for first-degree manslaughter - and this time the jury found him not guilty. He was a free man.

At about the time John was starting a new life, Lucas’ life was almost ending before it could even begin.

Elizabeth Lear McCarty’s heart sank when her son was born, the familiar cry of a baby’s entrance into the world replaced by phrases like “no heartbeat” and “no spontaneous respiration.”

Elizabeth says a botched delivery deprived her son of oxygen at birth, damaging his brain.

He was born “gray and dead,” she says.

There would be unanswered questions and a lawsuit, and pretty soon it would become clear that Lucas would never be like other kids.

Lucas has cerebral palsy, a condition suffered when a baby's brain is deprived of oxygen, usually at birth. The condition began to show its devastating effects more and more as he matured.

He never learned to walk, read or write. Even eating was a challenge. It looked like Lucas was destined to spend the rest of his days in a wheelchair, dependent on others for his most basic needs.

Though he has never spoken a word in his life, at age 5 he found a way to say anything he needed to. It would take him years to master it, but the machine he shied away from at first, slowly became his link to his family and the world.

Based on Mayan hieroglyphs, Minspeak allows Lucas to create full sentences by pushing a series of pictures.

If he wants to say the word food, he pushes the picture of an apple. If he wants to say eat, he pushes the picture of an apple followed by the picture of a man running, called the “action man.” If he just wants to say apple, he pushes apple twice.

It can get fairly complex to an outsider. A hamburger, for example, is apple + scale + treasure chest. Somehow, this all makes sense if you’ve never learned to read or write with words.

Lucas grew up going to an Episcopal church, but his mom says he never liked it all that much. He was antsy and easily irritated, and sitting quietly for hours not only was difficult, but practically ran counter to his genetic predisposition.

“His sister kept his hands down the whole time he was at our church,” Elizabeth says.

‘My calling is singing the gospel’

At the funeral for his son, John Woods was touched by the presence of Lucas and his grandfather, James Lear.

“I looked around the church and Mr. Lear was there. Lucas was there. That’s to show you an old black man like me has some dear, sweet white friends,” John says.

Afterward, John began coming to the McCarty house to sing gospel songs with Lucas.

“He really couldn't do much else,” John says. “We would sing songs like ‘God’s Got It All In Control’ ” - no doubt a message that, at the time, offered equal comfort to both of them.

John asked Elizabeth if he could take Lucas to Easter service at Trinity House of Prayer, where he was the music director. John had been saved at Trinity, and he hoped Lucas could be too.

At that first service, John carried Lucas, and because of John’s position as music director, they sat in the deacon’s box, a spot reserved for congregational royalty.

“The Trinity House of Prayer congregation are such a loving environment of peoples,” John says. “A man can be a sinner, a whiner, (but) when they bring him into Trinity House of Prayer he will feel nothing but pure and genuine love.”

The love Lucas felt most was for the music. He fit right in with the loud expressionism and theatrics, and adored the soulful singing. Trinity changed his image of church.

“Shouting, dancing, falling out and speaking in tongues is real church,” Lucas says through his device.

Trinity House of Prayer is known for its choir. Tucked deep into the fertile soil and God-fearing air of the Mississippi Delta, the church is nestled on a flat, barren landscape, one of hundreds in a region where faith is the answer to poverty and hardship.

The chapel isn’t much to look at - an old gray building surrounded by a graveyard of dilapidated vehicles and rusted-out farm equipment. On the inside, windows are covered in a clear red film, a cheap alternative to stained glass. And on a sunny day, the faded carpet and beautiful wood pews light up with a glow that can feel transcendent.

Most notably, Trinity’s congregation is all black – with one exception. Every Sunday for the past 15 years, Lucas has shown up, sometimes carried, sometimes crawling, but always ready to put his “foot on the devil’s head.”

It’s a bit of a peculiar sight, a white man in a black church, on his knees, wailing indecipherably, but passionately into the microphone in the corner of the choir stand. He knows every word, he just can’t say them, but that sure doesn’t stop him from finding his voice.

“My calling is singing the gospel,” he says.

A warm, cleansing oil

Four months before Lucas was born, John Woods prayed for the first time for as long as he could remember.

The hard crack of the pistol, pulled from his waistband and fired without aim on that balmy Father's Day in 1987, rang through his head over and over.

John didn’t know if the man he had shot was dead, but he knew he was in trouble. He and his wife, Mary Frances, cried together until a squad car pulled into his driveway and took John away in handcuffs.

According to John, he heard his sister's husband had beaten her with a pipe, and John wanted to get even. He tracked the man down at a diner to give him a piece of his mind, the gun in his waistband providing punctuation for each cautionary sentence.

But according to John’s description in Pearson's "Year of our Lord," his brother-in-law didn’t take too kindly to the threat. He chased John down a road and pulled out a .25 automatic. He got off two shots before the gun jammed, and before John knew it, he’d shot back.

John wouldn’t find out for sure until he was in his cell that the man was dead, but he had felt the life leave his brother-in-law the second he shot him.

It was in the Sunflower County Jail where John found God. As he sat there in a cold cell, a cellmate told him to turn his life over to the Lord.

John’s life had been far from charmed. Plagued by drugs and alcohol, he now found himself sharing a fate suffered by all too many poor black men in the Delta. But on one of those sleepless nights, John prayed, and that’s when he says he felt it.

“It was like a warm oil being poured down from the top of my head, running slowly down my body, and every place it touched it was cleansing me.”

It was when John got out of jail that he says “old Jimmy Lear” took a chance on him, made him his "oxygen man," always telling John not to worry and “keep moving.”

John would drive around to each pond and put a long stick into the water and check the oxygen levels. The job required him to check the oxygen nearly every hour around the clock, so sleeping was in short spurts spread throughout the day and night.

It was during one of these naps 15 years ago that John had a strange dream. In the dream, Tony, the oldest of his four sons, had crashed his truck, and John was consoling him. John awoke to the phone ringing. It was his wife Mary Frances. Tony had fallen asleep at the wheel coming home from work at 4 a.m.

“God called him home.”

Crawling into the choir stand

Despite being told he’d never be able to walk, Lucas has found his own way, slipping out of his wheelchair and onto the floor at Trinity House of Prayer, where he shuffles around on thick knee pads as if in a state of constant reverence.

Drawn to the music, it was only a matter of time before Lucas crawled up into the choir stand. Not only was Lucas the only white member of the church - and definitely the only member with cerebral palsy - until last year he was also the only man in the all women’s choir. A young man has since joined him.

Trinity’s pastor, Willie B. Knighten, tried to heal Lucas at one of his first services. Lucas says it was the only time he felt uncomfortable at the church.

“I only felt funny when the preacher laid hands on me the first time,” he remembers.

It’s the soft spot within many people that makes them wish Lucas normal, but the hand of God hasn’t taken away his condition.

Still, to nearly everyone who attends Trinity, it’s a small miracle each time Lucas crawls into the choir stand on his own every week to sing. In a small way, he has been healed.

Lucas is a lot like any 25-year-old single man. He likes cars, he loves surfing the web, and the No. 1 thing on his mind at any given time is women. He wants a girlfriend - specifically one, he says, who is “an outgoing sweetheart, who does not smoke, has never had children but wants (them) and is a Republican.”

Lucas’ access to the outside world is a bit limited. Because of his handicap, going anywhere can be an ordeal. He refuses to use a power chair, instead relying on the push of a friend, relative or stranger.

A few days each week, Lucas works at his father’s restaurant in nearby Indianola washing dishes and cleaning. When Lucas was 6 years old, his parents got divorced. It’s no secret that the difficulties of raising an impaired child strained the marriage.

The job gets him out of the house he shares with his mother, something that’s important for a young man whose body is disabled but whose ambition knows no limits. Lucas wants to start his own cleaning company, and during the announcements following a recent service at Trinity House of Prayer, Lucas asks for the microphone, holds it up to his machine and slowly types out the message that if anyone is looking for work, he’s hiring.

Church is the one time a week Lucas knows he can get out of the house, and at Trinity House of Prayer people won’t look away when he comes down the aisle.

“Lucas would be at church every time the door opened if he could,” his mother says. “But we just usually go take him on Sunday. And that's the most important part of the week for Lucas … getting to church on Sunday.”

Lucas has found other ways to connect. He has an e-mail address and a Facebook account, but for years his favorite hobby has been jumping on the CB radio he keeps in the family room. Most of the truckers know him by now. His handle is “Teddy Bear,” and he starts each interaction the same way: “Is there a pot of coffee on?”

John Woods, now Bishop John Woods, has moved on from Trinity to be the associate pastor of a church down the road. He and Lucas still get together, singing their favorite gospel songs just as they did 15 years ago. Lucas’ favorites are “I’ll Fly Away” and “I’ve Got To Run.” Between songs they talk about life and the Lord.

When John asks Lucas if he’s been saved, he shrugs. Despite the music and the love of Trinity’s congregants, he hasn’t quite made his peace with God. It’s a familiar struggle for many, but when you draw a hand like Lucas’, making sense of it all can be even more challenging.

Lucas may still be on a search for God, but the boy who was born without a breath has found his “oxygen man” - and John has found the son he lost.

When they speak of God, John tells Lucas, “Don’t worry, you’ll find him one day.” But Lucas seems content to find his solace “in the music,” and he’s happy as long as he can convince folks of one thing: “I want people to know I am more than a boy in a wheelchair.”

Editor's Note: Nashville band Sleeping Bulls provided the song “Jean Baptiste” from their upcoming album “The Least Banquets” for the video.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • Faith & Health • Mississippi

soundoff (1,300 Responses)
  1. Laughing

    @Lycidas,

    Actually, there's quite a bit wrong here. There's willful ignorance, superiority, haughtiness, idiocy and maybe a mental handicap.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  2. Lycidas

    Sounds like the person knows quite well what they believe. Nothing wrong there.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  3. Zach

    How can you find that which almost certainly doesn't exist. Humanity would be far better off if people didn't believe in religion and if Humanity united as one. There is no god. People need to quit believing in magical fairytales and start living the real world. No god has ever been proven to exist for a reason. It's all just a scam.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
    • The Jackdaw

      You are very much correct. Unfortunately, I do not think that religion will go away any time soon. People gravitate to thiings that make them feel special and part of something larger than themselves. It also offers a sence of community, which we are geared to want. Its the same reason facebook and twitter have grown so large. Fear the day the Pope gets a Facebook account.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
    • albert

      Artist, please show us from the Bible where it teaches that the Earth is some type of testing ground for getting into heaven. If Adam & Eve remained without sin, where would they be living today. Not once did God tell them that if they were 'Good' they would go to Heaven, and if they were 'Bad' they would go to Hell. Stop listening to the preachers that are lying to you. Learn the truth about the Bible.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
    • Bruce

      Why should we all just unite as one? Why can't we celebrate, or at least tolerate, our diversity?

      God's nonexistence doesn't really matter at the end of the day. The "real world" is full of people who believe in any number of things. Why should they stop believing in it? Actually they "believe" things by not really believing them–that is, they don't really engage their opinions intellectually or reflectively at all.

      It's kind of like singing along to a song in a foreign language and never taking the time to find out what the words mean. Yeah, you're singing the song, but if words of that song don't reflect what you actually believe it is only coincidental.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Nookster

      The worst part of these religions is programming children from birth with this nonsense. If one had to wait until atleast 18 to learn about a particular religion the world would have so much less fanaticism.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
    • AB

      It's not going to happen, people need their security blankets. Reality isn't very comforting.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
    • Missy Crawford

      There is a winepress that awaits you.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • Ancient Marinator

      Zach, I'm not gonna go there, but look up 'magical thinking.'

      July 20, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  4. The Jackdaw

    Oh boy, another story about Jesus!

    July 20, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
    • Bruce

      Actually, the article has almost nothing to do with Jesus.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • The Jackdaw

      its an article about a church. Therefore, a Jesus article.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
    • Bruce

      Um... no. Not so much. The name, "Jesus," doesn't even appear in the article.

      This specific church is not Jesus. Jesus is not this particular church. The article lists a handful of names. That's who the story is about.

      The article really has almost nothing to do with Jesus.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
    • JT

      Actually it's a story about a boy who was born with a terrible handicap who has found some acceptance and solice. I'm happy for him. BTW, I'm an atheist.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • albert

      Here is what Jesus himself said about these types of churches (it's not pretty), Matt. 7:21-23

      July 20, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • Bruce

      albert, Jesus was talking about YOU when he said that thing in Matthew 7. Seriously, he was.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • albert

      OK, Bruce. I'm calling your bluff as well. My guess is that you celebrate Christmas and Easter. Both holidays that have there origins in Pagan customs and Greek mythology. So please show me if you are truly a Christian, where Jesus taught his followers to practice Pagan customs and Greek mythology. Show me Santa Clause in the Bible. Show me the Easter Bunny. Again, I refer you to Matt. 7:21-23

      July 20, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Bruce

      I believe that Jack is saying this retarted American conservative IS Jesus.

      The second coming has arrived!

      Does this mean Sarah Pallin is the new virgin mother?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
    • Ancient Marinator

      Really, it's about some people who go to churches. Not the same thing.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  5. maude

    Chirst is the son of Allah. Allah is god. God is Lord. The muslims say Ameen after prayer. The christians say Amen after prayer. Allah bestowed amongst the Muslims to use Ameen instead of Amen. Amen was reserved for Christ. Amen is single person where as Ameen is many people (all people). May Allah bless each and everyone of you. Priase Allah and worship him, you will have eternal peace.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
    • The Jackdaw

      Right, you sure will. Just like the muslim world is peaceful.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • maude

      Ameen brother, Ameen !

      Have faith and Allah will reward thee . Believe in thy creator (your true father). Allah bless Jackdaw and offer him eternal peace.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
    • The Jackdaw

      I'm peaceful and malarkey free. Thank you.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • William Demuth

      If Allah is the father of Jesus, does that mean he was doing Mary behind Gods back?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
    • Missy Crawford

      Not so, Amen means Yay God! It is a recognition of His Majesty at the end of a prayer, or an exclaimation when reflecting His mighty works.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
    • Ancient Marinator

      'Al' is Arabic for 'the.' Al-Lah is The Lord. Does it make better sense now? Yeah, not to me either.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  6. Will

    This is a nice story. I truly enjoyed reading it. It is great to see a white in a black church(or vice versa). It is great to see a Republican not considered to be a evil person in a Democratic church(or vice versa). The point is, these are seen as such rare occurrences, they are proudly trumpeted on the home page, when in fact, they should be the norm instead of the rare exception. My direct experience of attending evangelical churches for 33 years, was I rarely if ever saw a black. Democrats were considered to be purely evil people, and were not welcome to attend services, unless they quickly repented of their grave political sins and became a conservative Republican. Attendees who have even a very tiny disagreement over a very minor doctrine, are considered apostates, and told to repent or leave the church. This is reality.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Will

      @Jethro
      No the churches I attended were mainly in Ohio, and also in California. It is true that deeply religious people are among the most racist and bigoted people on earth.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Will

      You DID pick up on the fact that the white guy was an idiot, didn't you?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
    • Missy Crawford

      Sounds like you stayed too long. We are to worship God in Spirit and Truth. Church has nothing to do with politics. Politics is a device of man's, as is arrogance. Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is power to overcome earthly vanity. Deny Him, the Holy Spirit, and the life of God is not in you. Deny His power, and you have a church without His presense, filled with the misguided devices of man. Jesus said He would send us a Comforter, that is the Spirit of Truth. How comfortable are you?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
  7. Doug

    Hes not Smokey Robinson but I would rather listen to him than Justin Timberlake. Doug.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  8. Bruce

    You know, I can empathize with Lucas' preferences with this church, even though I tend to not enjoy the charismatic experience.

    I mean, given the handicap that separates his emotions and ideas from his verbal expressions, the CP that turns his attempts at self-expression into completely unintelligible sounds, the "speaking in tongues" practices of churches like this is probably right up his alley. Who knew that God had such a difficult time speaking coherently when using the mouths of the faithful? That's a limitation that Lucas can identify with first-hand.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  9. Karen

    Oh lord.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • Allen

      Pick a bale of cotton

      July 20, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
  10. IN FAITH

    If you want some attention your in the wrong section. So if your not a believer you need to pray before judgement day.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • Spiffy

      Fear tactics don't work. They only isolate.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
    • Laughing

      If we left then what would you all discuss? Was Jesus a Methodist or a Baptist? How great christianity is as long as all those non-christian chrsitian people stopped saying they were christians? I guess there are a bunch of topics for believers to discuss when atheists aren't around, but where's the fun in that?

      July 20, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      In 2003, christian scientists conducted an experiment on prayer, and they found out that it doesn't work. Hundreds of preachers were assembled to pray for the Oakland Raiders to win the Super Bowl, and even with a 4 point spread, they lost. I encourage every athlete to help with this experiment by not only praying to win, but also to curse god when they lose, and hopefully, one day, we won't have losers.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • Lee

      "So if your not a believer you need to pray before judgement day"

      And to which god would you recommend we pray? There are literally millions of gods, made up throughout history. What evidence is there to suggest your particular sect of your particular religion is correct?

      July 20, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Joe

      First off- if you are going to spout "God's word) you at least need to figure out how to properly use the word YOU'RE, not YOUR.
      Second off- God doesn't exist, so there is that...

      July 20, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Bruce

      Help me out, here. If you start actually praying, isn't that a sign that you already believe? How are non-believers even able to pray?

      Or are you saying I can "pray" and not mean what I'm saying in a hedge-your-bets sort of way and I'm covered?

      July 20, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • FAITH IS FEAR

      BE VERY AFRAiD! GOD LOVES YOU, SO HE"S PROBABLY GOING TO SEND YOU TO A REALLY NASTY PLACE FOR THE REST OF ETERNITY FOR NOT KISSING HIS DIVINE DERRIERE 24/7 OR SOME OTHER TINY INFRACTION THAT YOU DID NOT EVEN KNOW WAS AN INFRACTION!

      GOD IS ALL-POWERFUL AMD ALL-MERCIFUL, SO SAVOR HIS GNASHY TEETH HELL FOR ETERNITY!

      GOD CONTROLS EVERYTHING . . . but he's short on cash again, so give him lots of money now. Operators are standing by.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
    • Lycidas

      @FiF- angry enough? Obviously you know little about the Tanakh. But don't let that stop you from ranting.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • Phil

      Like other people have mentioned in reply to your post.... Who would we pray to? We are nonbelievers...

      Say some prayers for us, I'm sure they'll do a lot of good...and when I wake up tomorrow and realize that I'm still an atheist, it will further resolve my proof that god isn't real and never has been.

      If you've read the bible - and I don't mean just random passages - but read the whole thing from front to back...you'd realize that god promises to answer our prayers no matter how trivial they are... Since prayer doesn't actually lead to solving the problems in the world, perhaps it's time to get off our @sses and start doing something.

      One set of hands working is better than millions of people praying.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • PeterVN

      Phil,

      Re "One set of hands working is better than millions of people praying.", thanks for that line of wisdom. I'll remember it. And I agree with you.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
    • Pirate

      Lycidas, some quotes from your beloved Tanakh: When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl's owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. (Exodus 21:7-11 NLT)

      July 20, 2011 at 8:17 pm |
    • Pirate

      In faith: You need to learn some proper English.. "Your" is possessive, maybe you meant "you're"??? Ignorance is bliss, they say!

      July 20, 2011 at 8:19 pm |
  11. Mark

    Some people turn to pills or booze to deal with issues in their life. Some turn to religion. Really, what's the differnce if the rest of the public isn't getting beaten over they head with either approach? You don't have to believe what the people in this story do, that's fine. But it is nice how this community has rallied around this young man. Maybe for once, just judge a situation based on the socially redeeming qualities not wheither or not you believe those qualities were spiritually driven or otherwise.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
    • Sybaris

      That's fine Mark until you get people in office or with enough influence on politicians to incorporate their religious beliefs into the laws of the land.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • Patrick

      Oh well that's a good point – and certainly being addicted to religion in many cases is much less harmful than being addicted to booze or drugs. Unless your child is gay or something and they take their own life because they can't seem to make themselves straight.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Patrick

      Was that a joke? Not sure,

      Make themselves straight? Religion not harmfull?

      July 20, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
    • Woof

      So Mark, you see Jesus as being the same as heroin? Karl Marx said the same thing.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
    • PraiseTheLard

      Woof wrote: "So Mark, you see Jesus as being the same as heroin?"

      Worse, actually... At least there are treatment centers to help with heroin addiction...

      Karl Marx did wrote something to the effect that religion is the opiate of the public, but he certainly wasn't the only one with that sentiment...

      July 20, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  12. Anthony in Maryland

    At the end of this life, many will realize that they will stand before a Creator and he will judge them on their lives. Right, wrong or indifferent each man will be judged by the according of his works. To those who don't believe that is your simple choice but you should not criticize those who do. In the end of your life you will know the truth!

    July 20, 2011 at 2:53 pm |
    • PraiseTheLard

      And you know this... how?

      July 20, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Huh? That is just silly on SO many levels.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
    • Mike

      Amen!

      July 20, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
    • Wow!

      Praisethelard, Through his faith in Jesus Christ. Does that hurt you in any way? You are choosing to not believe. OK, continue to not believe. We all have the choice.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
    • Sybaris

      I wish i could be a fly on the wall when at the end of your life you are standing in front of the flying spaghetti monster and it asks why you didn't worship it.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:07 pm |
    • Sybaris

      @ Wow!
      To understand why we don't believe in your god ask yourself why you don't believe in Zeus

      July 20, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Anthony
      You are 100% correct.
      Your soul shall face judgement after death, at which time you must pray, saying "I have not learnt the things which are not".
      The heart of your soul shall then be weighed against the white feather of Ma'at and should it be lighter than the feather, you will find your eternal bliss in the Field of Reeds.
      Should it be heavier, Osiris will be tossed to the floor of teh Hall of Truth to be devoured by Amenti – he with the with the face of a crocodile, front of a leopard and the back of a rhinoceros.

      Or do you subsribe to a different mythology?

      July 20, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
    • The Truth To Come

      At the end of this life, many will realize that they will stand before a Creator and he will judge them on their lives. At that moment they will say : "OH SHIT ! ! It's Ptah! I worshipped the wrong God! No! Don't throw me into Egyptian Hell! AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!

      Hey look! Jesus and Mohammed and Joseph Smith are here in Ptah's Hell of anal probes too!

      July 20, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • Wow

      Sybaris, I do understand why you believe what you believe. That isn't what my comment was about. I understand that you don't believe in God do to there being no physical or scientific evidence (more than likely). Anthony has faith in God. If someone believes in Zeus, that is their choice.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:06 pm |
  13. Wow!

    I didn't watch the video, but from what I hear about it here, no one is edified by what they are practicing. I plan on watching it later.

    July 20, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
    • Rob

      it's a comedy that verges on sickening...like the Jack@$s movies...

      July 20, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
    • Rob

      speaking of which....this Lucas guy could probably drive better than Ryan Dunn....

      July 20, 2011 at 2:53 pm |
  14. Dave

    Amen Lucas! I am glad you are enjoying Christ in praising Him through song! I will all would be so simple and just enjoy Him!
    I pray for everyone on this forum, that the grace of Christ, the love of God and fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all! Enjoy Christ in all His riches!
    “ But I am poor and pained; May Your salvation, O God, set me on high.
    I will praise the name of God with a song And will magnify Him with thanksgiving;
    And it will be better to Jehovah than an ox Or a bull with horns and hooves.
    The meek have seen it; they rejoice. You who seek God, let your heart revive.
    For Jehovah listens to the needy, And He does not despise His prisoners.
    Let the heavens and the earth praise Him, The seas and everything that moves in them.” Psalms 69:29-34

    July 20, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
    • Rob

      stop plaigarizing and try having an original thought....

      July 20, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Hulk will SMASH Avengers # 8

      Luckily I don't base my life on comic books, Why do you?

      July 20, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
    • Dave

      "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus," – Philippians 2:5

      July 20, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus,"
      Futher evidence of the Zombification of Christ.
      I think a brain shaped eucharist wafer would really drive home the cannibalistic nature of that rite...

      July 20, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Dave

      "But we all with unveiled face, beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord Spirit." 2 Corinthians 3:18

      July 20, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
    • Lycidas

      Doc, if you are going to quote from Phil 2:5 at least know what you are talking about. Try this translation since you are being lazy:
      "..your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature[a] God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature[b] of a servant, being made in human likeness. "

      July 20, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
  15. Politically Incorrect

    Loves his CB radio and wants a girlfriend who is Republican. Yep, brain damaged Southerners are indeed the Republican base.

    July 20, 2011 at 2:38 pm |
    • Normon

      And atheists get all the flames for inappropriate comments...

      July 20, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
    • Theology

      The elect cannot be known. You may be headed for flames yourself, Norman.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
    • Barrie O

      You are pitiful. Now, get out of your parents' basement as it's time for your drive-thru shift @ Burger King.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
    • Mike

      Inappropriate comment. Clearly this boy has more intelligence than you will ever have.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
    • Atheist

      @ Barrie O
      The original poster was obviously a democrate, so I'm sure he isn't working. But probably living in his moms basement collecting welfare checks.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
    • Ryan

      harsh....but well...true

      July 20, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
    • Normon

      Sorry, 'flames' as in old-school flame war, i.e. harsh, derogatory, mean, messages passed back and forth. Am I dating myself with such usage?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
    • Normon

      On the one hand, I could say that you shouldn't denigrate folks with CP by comparing them to Republicans.

      On the other, I might say that at least he's got a job, unlike certain politically incorrect Democrats, who have plenty of time to spend on these silly blog sites. (And, yes, I have a job.)

      July 20, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
  16. Mary

    I also have a son with Cerebral Palsy. He, much like Lucas, cannot walk, talk, sit on his own or feed himself. However he is very smart. He can read and spell. He also, like lucas, uses a computer to speak. He makes very similar verbilizations as Lucas. He also shares Lucas' passion for Praising God. He takes part in the Praise and Worship in our church and has even written some beautiful worship songs to God that we play for the congregation. This story really touched my heart!!! I can't help but think how awesome it would be to get these two young men together, Lord willing!?!
    As for all the negative comments about God....I find it very sad, understandable, but sad. I went though a period in my life when I didn't believe in God. I've had so may instances where God has shown HIs power in my life since then, that no one could ever convice me otherwise. I know He is REAL!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 20, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Mary.

      Don't put your self out in this place,

      Believe what you want, but many will laugh at you for worshiping a God that is supposed to have the power to prevent tragedies like yours.

      But be warned if you post silliness, you will be hammered.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Mary,
      I think getting them together would be a great idea. CBs don't have much range, but HAM radios might connect these two, or the Internet would be even better.
      Best wishes!

      July 20, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
    • Rob

      you meant to say "smart for a vegetable" right? Your perception that being able to read and spell indicate that he is smart only makes me question YOUR intelligence....my daughter could read and spell when she was 4....I still wouldn't say she was a smart person....smart for a child, yes....

      July 20, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
    • Wow!

      William, I agree with you that she shouldn't be in this place. it's makes me feel good that you warned her. Mary, I agree with William on this even though we don't share faith in common. Stop posting. It won't go well.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:53 pm |
    • EmeraldCity

      Rob – Please get over yourself soon. Did you hear what this woman says? Her son has cerebral palsy. And yet you have to take the opportunity to call her son a vegetable and question her intelligence, because you obviously have the mannerisms of a botfly. No class whatsoever.

      Your posts are all over the topic. It's clear that you like to hear yourself speak. Now just, finally, shut the f up.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  17. Iceman

    @David Stone
    You bring up an excellent point. Did you know that Archeologist have found old scrolls from the book of Isaiah and others. They found what has been called "the dead sea scrolls." After examining those scrolls and comparing them with the modern translations of today. Do you know what they concluded?

    Professor Julio Trebolle Barrera, a member of the international team of editors of the Dead Sea Scrolls, states: “The Isaiah Scroll [from Qumran] provides irrefutable proof that the transmission of the biblical text through a period of more than one thousand years by the hands of Jewish copyists has been extremely faithful and careful.” The Bible has not undergone fundamental changes. =)

    July 20, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
    • David Stone

      Yeah yeah, and the earth was covered with water (though there isn't enough to do it), Noah fit two of EVERY animal on earth on the ark (impossible of course), the earth was created in a week.....all of those logical thoughts have prevailed....

      July 20, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      It's called "Garbage In- Garbage Out". If the input to anything is flawed, or in error, the output will be too! See, it proves a longstanding scientific axiom.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
    • William Demuth

      One great unsolved mystery left.

      Can Jesus STILL walk on water after the crucifiction?

      I mean my daughter wears nose plugs, so I guess he could just wear foot plugs right?

      July 20, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Iceman
      The Dead Sea Scrolls are The Tanakh (or Old Testament to you Christians).
      It is my understanding that Christians believe that the coming of the Messiah invalidated all the rules in the OT – so the Bible HAS changed.
      Your religion added a second book.
      Just like The Latter Day Saints added a third book.
      Is The Book of Mormon God's word, in your opinion?
      If not, then why is teh New Testament valid?

      July 20, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
    • Rob

      apparently, it is a well known fact, to all but the christians, that the clergy during the period of King James were pretty much the only one's that could read and write and they knowingly altered the text during its translation to english under the belief that the common man or layperson would be unable to comprehend the actual meaning...

      July 20, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
    • Wow!

      Newer versions of the Bible have used the same greek texts as the King James version in their translation. Still reads the same. Just updated to make it more understandable in todays language.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      And, if the Book Of Moron isn't Dog's word, and if Mitt Romney gets the Republicant nomination, does that mean that their presidential hopeful will believe in false prophets?

      July 20, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Wow!
      The problem is that there are many translation difficulties that can lead to misunderstanding and unneeded persecution.
      For example, people condemn gays based on 1 Corinthians 6:9.
      The original Greek manuscript uses the word "Ars.enkotai", which the Apostle Paul would have understood to mean "male prosti.tutes", but which has been variously translated as as "abusers of themselves with mankind" (KJV), "se.xual per.verts" (RSV), "sodo.mites" (NKJV, NAB, JB, NRSV), those "who are guilty of hom.ose.xual per.version" (NEB), "men who lie with males" (Lamsa), "behaves like a hom.ose.xual" (CEV), "men who have se.xual relations with other men" (NCV), and "ho.mose.xual offenders" (NIV). The New American Bible (Roman Catholic) translated ar.senokoitai as "practicing hom.ose.xuals". After much protest, the editors agreed to delete this term and replace it with "sodo.mites" in subsequent editions.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      Hey Wow? Did you see my reply to your message on Page 11? I too want to apologize for any confusion.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
    • Wow

      whatwhat..., the reply is there. thanks

      July 20, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
  18. David Stone

    Organized religion is disgusting. The only thing worse is an organized religion where people roll around the on the floor, "speaking in tongues", pretending that God is speaking through them. Revolting, and uncivilized. Have we as humans not moved beyond this sort of GARBAGE? Sad, and pathetic.

    July 20, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
    • Dave

      David, be careful. You are venturing out where you have no knowledge and your blasphemy is dangerous for you. I am sorry you have this anger and no doubt have been hurt by organized religion in the past. I want to tell you that religion is different than relationship and organized religion does not get you to Heaven, rather a relationship with Jesus Christ. I hope you are not offended by my reply as I will be praying for you, David. I ask that you read, study and search out this relationship I write about. I will never meet you or know what happens to you after I send this but it is my prayer that one day, you will give your heart to Christ and let Him be your source of love and hope. David, have a good afternoon and God bless you!

      July 20, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      Hey Dave, ever look down on people as if you were special, and gifted, above them, much? What a load of condescending c r a p.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
    • Bruce

      Yeah, and that "jungle music" too, amiright?

      [/sarcasm]

      Cultural insensitivity is culturally insensitive...

      July 20, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
    • i wonder

      Dave,

      What would you say if I said that I have a relationship with Socrates?

      July 20, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • Bruce

      Hey i wonder, I would say that–at best–you have a lively conversation with Plato and not a relationship with Socrates.

      Socrates is a prominent character in plays written by Plato.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  19. Iceman

    @William Demuth
    We call them "Wolves in sheep clothing" or as the Bible calls them "false shepherds."

    July 20, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
    • Rob

      So, how are you to know the difference between a false shepherd and a real one that is leading you in down an unexpected path? It seems that you consider anyone that wants to alter your antiquated ideals to be false when they could just be correcting you where you strayed...

      July 20, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Like child molesters in a robe and collar?

      July 20, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
    • Rob

      no, those are the real shepherds...they have the collar to prove it...

      July 20, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  20. Rob

    The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was to make religious nuts believe he was this "god" character

    July 20, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
    • john

      hey rob, i was thinking of you and im glad you are still here. im going to do something. im going to pray that God shows himself to you in a way that will be undeniable. it will only be for you. you will have no proof to show anyone else. what you choose to do with it will be yours alone. no religion, no church, no preach. Just God. And i promise you, this week you will experience it. please dont say anything to me or challenge it because it is already in motion. i almost envy you, because it is going to be amazing. I wish the bezst for you in your life, because you are an amazingly talented person. you know what i mean too. goodbye and godspeed. dont waste it brother.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
    • Artist

      john

      hey rob, i was thinking of you and im glad you are still here. im going to do something. im going to pray that God shows himself to you in a way that will be undeniable. it will only be for you. you will have no proof to show anyone else. what you choose to do with it will be yours alone. no religion, no church, no preach. Just God. And i promise you, this week you will experience it. please dont say anything to me or challenge it because it is already in motion. i almost envy you, because it is going to be amazing. I wish the bezst for you in your life, because you are an amazingly talented person. you know what i mean too. goodbye and godspeed. dont waste it brother.

      --------

      It is maaaaaagic

      July 20, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
    • Rob

      you CAN just hit reply and they post in order....no need to cut and paste

      July 20, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
    • William Demuth

      john

      I also wish the bezst for you in your life. Ihave no clue what that is, but I wish it just the same.

      July 20, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
    • Rob

      john, am I supposed to worry about you talking to yourselft?

      July 20, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
    • Ryan

      Rob-

      the ironic thing, is when people say these things to you, they are saying it in hopes of this diety of theirs to hear them do this "for" you, when all it really is, is an attempt to get on their gods good side. As though it can hear them and their "good deed" for the day. There is no such thing as true alturisum. So by you saying this to Rob, is really just a way for you to try to look better for your god so that you may get into your happy little place a little easier when the time comes in your mind. So basically....its very similar to a bribe. Get what I'm saying? A bribe disguised as something that looks like ONLY a good deed. But that is still a bribe.

      July 20, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.