home
RSS
August 3rd, 2011
08:00 AM ET

My Take: How I turned 'misery to ministry'

By Jacquie Hood Martin, Special to CNN

Editor’s note: Jacquie Hood Martin is Chief Spiritual Officer for Jacquie Hood Ministries and author of “Fulfilled, The Art and Joy of Balanced Living.” She is married to CNN contributor Roland Martin. The CNN Red Chair Interview weekly franchise strives to look at people’s past to see what made them who they are today. We also want to know their biggest pivotal and “aha” moments in their lives.

(CNN) – It’s true what they say, that hindsight is 20-20. Looking back provides me with the clarity and ability to address the many things that have happened in my life.

Many people will say there are no bad experiences, that it’s our perspective on the things that happen in our lives that cause us to label them good or bad. I believe that is an improper analysis.

I have been able to find the silver lining in all the things that have happened to me, but only because the love I know the Lord has for me lets me be in God’s grace and keeps me well adjusted.

I grew up initially in a single parent home where my mother and I were raised by her grandmother. God’s favor allowed my mother to meet a man who married her and her 2-year-old daughter. Yes, it was a package deal.

My first sibling, a sister, was born when I was 8. A second sister arrived when I was 10. We became a party of five who lived the American dream. My parents owned a car and a home and were both employed. We even had pets: a dog, cat and a turtle. I include this because I marvel at people who say this kind of life did not exist for African-Americans before the Huxtables. I was born in 1965, and by 1975 things were looking pretty good.

In 1976, as a fifth grader, I had my first experience with personal tragedy. A teenage boy abducted me, held me against my will and tried to sexually assault me. Many things go through a tween girl’s mind after such an encounter. It has a way of shaping your outlook on men and relationships, as well as a yearning to give back to the community so you can save someone else’s child - even if you were unable to save yourself.

I kept this to myself until the summer of 1992. I was preparing for the ministry, and the process of purging my past allowed me to reveal to my mother what happened that horrible day in fifth grade. I have since taken the opportunity, as some would say, to turn my “misery into a ministry.” Whether on radio or television, in columns or books, I find comfort in knowing that whatever I have experienced can help others live again.

During my time in the Red Chair, I grew even more as a woman, a leader, a Christian, a wife and a writer. The Red Chair interview has provided me with greater clarity on my life’s purpose, and how I have been able to balance my life without losing faith in myself and in others.

In my column for Hope for Women magazine, I share in detail “How to Heal After the Reveal.” There will be moments in every person’s life where they will wake up from their nightmare, stupor, stupidity, trauma, haze, or whatever self-induced coma-like state they find themselves in. And I hope my words, my ‘Red Chair’ moment, can help bring them back to sanity and safety among the rest of the human race.

Next week in CNN's Red Chair: TLC’s “The Little Couple,” Jen Arnold and Bill Klein

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Faith • God • Sex abuse

soundoff (568 Responses)
  1. Mr. Know-it-all

    Umm...I must say that you have an uncanny ability to copy and paste dictionary.com. However, your arguement is the same rhetoric that I mentioned before and therefore is null and void. This is the same garbage you have posted all through these posts. (Yes I have read them) Quit believing what everybody tells you and look it up yourself. You call Christians narrow minded but look at you. Oh you can dish it out but you can't take it at all. It never even occured to you that God is trying to reach you right now, but you're so lost that you don't even recognize it. Nobody puts up an arguement if you don't pray, but if we say we want to pray, then all of you jump on your bandwagon and come out picketing and boycotting. Why does God offend you so much? Someone told you earlier...it's because of your sin. You'd rather die in disbelief than to live in belief. You're the stubborn and stiff-necked people that Moses talked about. You wouldn't be convinced even if miracles were right in front of you and believe it or not they are.

    August 3, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
    • ummmm

      "However, your arguement is the same rhetoric that I mentioned before and therefore is null and void"

      LOL – right back at you hypocrite. LOL! You see those things because it's within you not me. Nice Job. Hmmm I think there's a scripture related to that. LOL!

      August 3, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
    • Sandy

      I don't believe, so show me one specific miracle that was definitely divinely caused . Just one. And explain how you know it was. But note that happenings with unknown causes don't count; the appropriate acknowledgement for those is "I don't know". (Too bad Christians aren't generally modest or courageous enough to acknowledge what they don't know.)

      August 3, 2011 at 7:30 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      Mr. Know-it-all

      You wouldn't be convinced even if miracles were right in front of you and believe it or not they are.
      >
      Miracles happen in Islam and in the name of Allah. Do you believe those to be real?

      August 3, 2011 at 7:31 pm |
    • Spiffy

      I would just like to say I was a Catholic for 16 years. I was really really really into it and stuff. I used to pray all the time. Not once did I ever hear back. That didn't deter me though because I thought I just wasn't a good enough Christian or that God was busy. Eventually though after learning more and more about my religion and the religions of others did I realize how ridiculous it all was.

      My point is that many theists say "open yourself up to God" or "pray" or "just let God into your life" but the truth is a lot of Atheists were theists for many years. They have been through all of that and it simply did not work for them. So do not tell Atheists to "pray" or "open themselves to God" because in most cases they have already been through that and that is the reason they are Atheists now.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:34 pm |
    • herbert juarez

      i would just like to say
      spiffy does not exist

      August 3, 2011 at 8:00 pm |
  2. Mr. Know-it-all

    You can't argue a point on Chrsitianity based on what you see. Faith has a good point, because the only thing that you can do is take it on faith. Atheists have a right to their opinions (as wrong as they may be). So many of you babble the same rhetorical information that has been handed down for years. Prove God doesn't exist! Do like C.S. Lewis and many others and prove Him. Don't just take a whole bunch of bologna and say its a ham sandwich, why don't you actually search for yourself. Go way back into the antiquities and look for the info. It's all there! Whether you read Josephus or if you look even further to Egyptian manuscripts that support Biblical accounts of Exodus and other books. The entire world seems to have heard of King David and Solomon. Now Solomon tried everything under the sun and at the end he wrote, "Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man." All the world flocked to hear his wisdom and now you think that you are more wise than he was. He wasn't perfect, so don't jump on the bandwagon and spout off about how he committed so many sins; he did! No arguement there. All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Jesus is God's attempt to reach out to sinful man and give us an eternal rest. Someone posted that you become dust; well that physical, we're talking about spiritual things here and you cannot mix the two. As for the young lady on the main post...good on her, at least she is trying to make a difference.

    August 3, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
    • ummmm

      "Atheists have a right to their opinions (as wrong as they may be)."

      Right there you lost the argument because you are not open to the other side of the debate, it's your way or the highway. .

      August 3, 2011 at 6:54 pm |
    • Lycidas

      No..he didn't lose the argument. You are as.suming he hasn't read any of the info presented by atheists and is making a snap judgement. There is no evidence of this.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
    • ummmm

      By the way....have you ever looked at the definition of consciousness, at one time or another, as: subjective experience; awareness; the ability to experience feelings; wakefulness; having a sense of self-hood; or as the executive control system of the mind. The problem is many think their consciousness is their spirit but it's not – it's just your brain doing it's thing and yes when you die – it is no more. The reason that is so important to understand is then you realize how precious YOUR life is here on earth and to make every moment count with those you care about. When you think you have eternity you don't make the same choices or risks that could be worth taking, loosing experiences because you're thinking how great it will be on the other side. It's a great pacifierfor the human race. Now stick it in your mouth and su*ck.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:01 pm |
    • Lycidas

      "When you think you have eternity you don't make the same choices or risks that could be worth taking, loosing experiences because you're thinking how great it will be on the other side."

      That's a foolish faith you have there. Foolish because it is just your opinion is it not? No evidence at all. If anyone needs their binky...it would be you after such a whiny rant you just gave.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • ummmm

      "That's a foolish faith you have there. Foolish because it is just your opinion is it not? No evidence at all. If anyone needs their binky...it would be you after such a whiny rant you just gave."

      You just did the very thing you are accusing me of...Nice going idiot. time for your binky.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • JF

      So is your vision of heaven hanging out in a place with King Solomon (the woman.izer), last minute death row converters, and Warren Jeffs? Do you think all of the women rap.ed by Solomon will be surprised to see him there? What a wonderful reunion that will be.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:37 pm |
    • Lycidas

      Actually....what you think was an opinion was not. I was spot on when I described your whiny rant. All the evidence needed is right before you in your own words.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
    • Lycidas

      "So is your vision of heaven..."

      Is heaven suppose to revolve around any one person's existence?

      August 8, 2011 at 7:18 pm |
    • Ummm

      "All the evidence needed is right before you in your own words."

      That's right it is but yet you keep right on whining too, binky time...now su</b<ck.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • Lycidas

      Nah..you are mistaken....pointing out bad behavior in those that think of themselves as superior to those of a faith is not whininess. I can see why your limited intellect has a problem with this but that's ok. I forgive you.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
    • ummm

      "I can see why your limited intellect has a problem with this but that's ok. I forgive you."

      It's called using you for entertainment since you keep coming back with more binky talk.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:28 pm |
    • Lycidas

      If that's what you believe...keep the faith.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:31 pm |
    • Ummmm

      "If that's what you believe...keep the faith."

      I don't need to you're ego is to predicable time for your binky....but you're ego will reply...come on now....you can't leave it that I might be right....ego is no place in heaven....come on now....entertainment time.....

      August 8, 2011 at 10:58 pm |
    • Lycidas

      "I don't need to you're ego is to predicable time for your binky....but you're ego will reply...come on now....you can't leave it that I might be right....ego is no place in heaven....come on now....entertainment time....."

      Guess you don't need to use commas either or proper grammar. Lol.

      Oh child...your childish "ego" ploy has been done before. It's amusing but you are still an amateur at it.

      August 9, 2011 at 11:25 am |
  3. Trog

    I'm sorry but I don't get the point of the article. The author is saying that her life was basically good with the exception of an incident in grade 5 (when she was scared but otherwise unharmed) and that led her to God?
    There are people who are true sufferers in this world and i'd hardly call this a tragic tale, more like a positive one.
    She had loving parents, a good life and a close call. Why does this have anything to do with religion?

    August 3, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  4. Spiffy

    I have a question. How did Jesus dying on a cross save all of humanity?

    August 3, 2011 at 6:33 pm |
    • DamianKnight

      Back in the day, people had to sacrafice an animal for their sins to be forgiven. Animals were very expensive and so to kill one would deplete your finances substantially. According to Christianity, Jesus was a perfect person, without sin or flaw. So when he was crucified, he was the sacrafice for sins to be forgiven. Since he was perfect, Christ's sins covered all sin thereby bringing reconciliation between man and God.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
    • DamianKnight

      Correction. Christ's sacrafice covered all sin.

      Man, time for some more coffee.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:42 pm |
    • Spiffy

      That made more sense (historically) then a lot of the explanations I have gotten even from my religion teacher.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
    • JF

      In antiquity worshipers believed that they had to give a sacrifice to their God or gods. Some cultures sacrificed people others animals. If you committed a sin, then you had to kill an innocent creature and all would be forgiven. The Bible says that God sent his son, Jesus, to earth to be sacrificed. Jesus' execution allows everyone to be forgiven for their sins and live forever and ever as a slave in heaven. Got it?

      August 3, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
    • DamianKnight

      Glad I could help. It's why I -strongly- urge people, both believers and non-believers alike, if you're going to pick up a book written way in the past, you HAVE to understand the context. Have to. It's why reading the Bible literally is so dangerous, because even Jesus preached about the "Spirit of the Law" versus "The Letter of the Law."

      I read Machiavelli's "The Prince" and had to have wikipedia open half the time to understand the references he was making. Same thing here.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
    • why

      Sin caused an eternal separation of Man from God.

      The only atonement for that sin was a "supreme" sacrifice.

      God sent his son(Jesus) as this sacrifice so that mankind can be redeemed through the shedding of his blood as the atonement for sins of all mankind.

      "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life"

      John 3:16
      Sacrifices are no longer required, John 3:16 answers this.

      PS: Sacrifice was and is used in many cultures to atone sins.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:50 pm |
    • herbert juarez

      i have a question
      does spiffy exist?

      August 3, 2011 at 8:01 pm |
  5. Wow

    You people really have nothing better to do with your time do you? Do you surf belife blogs all day looking for your post and then vehemently attack someone with an opposing opinion of belief?

    Atheists will go to hell. Christians will live forever. You can't be a former Christian but you can be a former atheist! Case closed....now get a job and move out of your mom's basement!

    August 3, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
    • ummm

      "Atheists will go to hell. Christians will live forever."

      Nope you'll become dust just like everything else and depending on how you do it either it will take time or it won't. Look at the mummy's from Egypt even they thought they would becoming back because of their beliefs. LOL!

      August 3, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
    • Wow

      Whatever dude! The Earth is still flat too right?

      August 3, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
    • Atheist b/c Truth is Better Than Fiction

      You're quite the one to talk!
      Threatening us with hell is rather futile when there is no verifiable proof for it. Christianity is not as strong as you may believe. Numerous studies have proven that as people become more educated they tend to leave the church. It is you the uneducated who still fall for the fables. I suggest you read Greg Paul's op-ed article in the Washington Post...it might shock you but statistics don't lie.
      Now be a good little mindless theist and go back to your Mommy's basement. Stay off the computer because it was science that invented that...not some sky-daddy.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
    • Spiffy

      Maybe if you believe the church's teachings then the earth is flat.

      Anyway you are being completely hypocritical. First off you are on the belief blog so by your own definition you have nothing better to do with your time. Then you go onto "vehemently attack someone with an opposing opinion of belief".

      I have a question for you. If God is all knowing and he created me doesn't that mean he created me knowing I would be an Atheist? Why would God create someone he knows he is sending to hell?

      Can't you see how ridiculous a belief in God is?

      Also when was the last time you got any converts by calling them basically losers then telling them that they will face eternal pain?

      August 3, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
    • Wow

      Spiffy and Atheist without a cause: God did make you but not to deny him. He gave you a choice. Der...do I have to explain free will also? If you're calling yourself a loser, then so be it, you're a loser.

      As for hell, it wasn't created for you but for satan and his followers, which is ultimately what you will be if you choose to deny Christ.

      As for being on belief blog: well I am a believer! Unlike you...

      I get a lot of converts by telling them about hell actually. That's called telling the truth.

      Oh and Atheist w/o a cause...who do you think gave you the brains to operate that PC of your's? God says, Before he formed you in your mother's womb, he knew you.

      Go back to nursery school gents, you're out of your league.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
    • i wonder

      Wow,

      What is the verified proof of 'hell'?

      (hint: the Bible is not verified proof, just in case you wish to use it)

      August 3, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • Lycidas

      But to be fair...one should not dimiss the Bible outright. That's just being closedminded in another way.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:16 pm |
    • ummmm

      "I get a lot of converts by telling them about hell actually. That's called telling the truth."

      Well guess what FEAR is the greatest marketing tool and the people who wrote the bible knew.

      Fear is a primal instinct that served us as cave dwellers and today. It keeps us alive, because if we survive a bad experience, we never forget how to avoid it in the future. Our most vivid memories are born in Fear. Adrenaline etches them into our brains.

      Nothing makes us more uncomfortable than fear. And, we have so many: fear of pain, disease, injury, failure, not being accepted, missing an opportunity, and being scammed to name a few. Fear invokes the flight or fight syndrome; and our first reaction is always to flee back to our comfort zone. If we don't know the way back, we are likely to follow whoever shows us a path.

      They present a scenario they hope will invoke our sense of fear. Then they show us a solution – a path back to our comfort zone.. Fear is used to sell virtually everything: cars, tires, and life insurance are clas*sics. WARNING: Fear can be too powerful to use as a motivator because it can also paralyze - the clas*sic deer in the headlights syndrome. It can work, but there are rules you must follow for it to be successful. To use fear successfully as a motivator, a solution must be offered with it. Fear is a powerful motivator, but it is a negative one. I prefer to motivate someone by eliminating doubt. Doubt destroys motivation. If you can help a person get rid of it, you will motivate them positively.

      August 3, 2011 at 7:16 pm |
    • Wow

      That's a lot of info about Fear...what are you a psychiatrist? Or does Ummm...stand for "What about Bob"?

      Get a grip!

      August 3, 2011 at 7:34 pm |
    • Wow

      I wonder...If you want proof of hell, then keep denying Jesus as Christ and you'll find it!

      August 3, 2011 at 7:35 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      Lycidas

      But to be fair...one should not dimiss the Bible outright. That's just being closedminded in another way.

      ---------–
      It does have some historical value

      August 3, 2011 at 7:40 pm |
    • John Richardson

      Oh, Judgment Day can't come fast enough! I can't wait to see the faces of all those arrogant little twerps who proclaim their own salvation and the damnation of others when the wheat and chafff are TRULY sorted!

      August 3, 2011 at 7:44 pm |
    • Spiffy

      So God even though you say God created me and you say that God knows everything including me becoming an Atheist he gave me a choice? How does that make sense? You are saying God created me the way I am but yet it is my fault for being the way I am. Why should I be punished for being the way God made me? That makes no sense.

      Don't give me a lesson on "free" will. There is nothing "free" about it. It is either worship the immoral magical sky daddy or spend eternity in hell. How is that even a choice?

      I never called myself a loser. You actually called yourself a loser because the way you described Atheists also describes yourself.

      I never said God created hell for me. I am saying it is completely idiotic of a place if God is omnipotent and omniscient. He created Satan knowing that he would be evil. Then he punishes him even though when he made him he knew exactly what would happen. This God of yours seems to be dealing the blame to the wrong person.

      Yes you are a believer. This blog allows me the chance to show people why belief in God is illogical and all around stupid.

      How is it telling the truth when you do not even know if hell is real or not. That is what I call lying. And if your effective recruiting tactic is using fear then obviously you are only getting sheep who do not want to think for themselves but would rather listen to the word of a two thousand year old book that was written by man.

      God didn't make my PC. Probably someone in China made my PC. Is God some guy in China because if he is then maybe you should make a pilgrimage there.

      How are we out of our league. You are the one spouting fairy tales like they are truth. If anyone needs growing up it is you. Only a complete child would believe in such ridiculous things such as souls, angels, demons, and a magic man in the sky.

      August 3, 2011 at 11:54 pm |
    • herbert juarez

      based on recent findings and all the best theories
      spiffy is unlikely to exist

      August 4, 2011 at 4:52 am |
    • Lycidas

      @Sippy-"You are saying God created me the way I am but yet it is my fault for being the way I am."

      Are you the same as your were when you were born? At 2 years old? At 10? 21? If you are exactly the same...then never mind. But I have a feeling you have grown, made choices...changed within. You are a being endowed with the ability to change. God knowing the outcome does not eliminate your ability to make choices.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
    • YippyKiaMF

      "God knowing the outcome does not eliminate your ability to make choices."

      Yeah god knew the outcome of Eve but did nothing about it condemning all of mankind to his wrath, creating environmental disasters because of "sin" that he already knows happens and created. Some god, he created you to fuck but if you don't love it then it will send you to hell. What a joke.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:27 pm |
    • Lycidas

      @Yip- So you would rather exist without choice? Just be a blind follower and not be responsible in any way? Sounds like a horrid existence.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:29 pm |
  6. Faith Required

    Jesus did not come here to create religion. He came here to save people from their sin. People have a problem with that “sin” word. People are offended by it. Because they don’t like the idea of having to be accountable…and certainly not to God. Jesus founded the church with his apostles, but down the line as often happens, some of the churches and doctrines became corrupt. Man started making up his own rules and doctrines and claiming them to be God’s will. The priests who molest children are not doing God’s will and are a mockery of what Christ tried to establish. My church’s motto is: Come to Jesus, not religion. Because religion has offended and hurt many. But Jesus will never leave you or forsake you.

    Some will say, this is not a proper argument and none of this matters because you don’t believe in God at all, or the Bible. Well, what can I say? You ask Christians why they believe in something they can’t see. It comes down to this…..if you’re interested in knowing God, then try approaching him yourself, because it’s a relationship. And it’s a personal one. But I do believe that there are those who wouldn’t believe in him even if he came to Earth in all of his majesty. They denied him the first time when he came in all humility, as Jesus.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
    • JF

      They denied him the first time when he came in all humility, as Jesus.

      You base your faith on literature written by man about 1900 years ago. Literature by anonymous writers who never met Jesus. Jesus died at least 30 years before the first book was written about him. David Koresh also claimed to be from God. Why not worship him? Are going to deny David?

      August 3, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
    • frank

      "They denied him the first time when he came in all humility, as Jesus."
      Claiming to be God's son, running around making outrageous narcissistic claims and egomaniacal statements, whipping people and animals, telling your sweet loving mother to fuck off, etc etc, is "humility"?
      LOLOLOL!

      August 3, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
  7. Faith Required

    To the unbelievers – yes, you are experts at logical arguments and I’ve heard about the flying spaghetti monster and the wizard in the sky. You ask us how we know there is a God? Unless you are willing to be open-minded to even remotely consider the idea, you will never understand. God defies logic. Period. So no logical explanation is going to satisfy you. The Bible says “Seek and you shall find. Knock and the door shall be opened”. Jesus asks us to seek him and he will make himself known to us. If you’ve never done that, then how do you know it’s not true? God can see your heart and he knows your intent. I know personally there is a God because of my experiences with him. No, I haven’t had any visitations, or have been summoned up to heaven or anything like that. There’s no logical way to explain it – I’ve seen how he has worked in my life, how he’s answered my prayers, how things have happened that that were more than coincidence. And don’t underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit (which is God’s spirit). You can read the Bible without it, but you will not understand it. That’s why so many people say there are inconsistencies…because they aren’t properly interpreting the scriptures. And you need the Holy Spirit to illuminate. The Bible is more than just words on a page. You can read a passage at different times and get deeper meanings each time. It’s constantly revealing. Why? Because it’s not an ordinary book. And yes, men wrote it at different times, but the same Holy Spirit inspired those words. People will say but there are so many contradictions. No – God does not contradict himself. “Contradictions” are due to improper interpretation and application. You have to know who that passage was written to, the context, historical background, etc. And you must have the Holy Spirit guiding you.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • ummm

      "Unless you are willing to be open-minded to even remotely consider the idea, you will never understand. God defies logic. Period. So no logical explanation is going to satisfy you."

      God defies logic, you can't see him, so how do you believe he's there and not a voice in your head (which is you) making you think it's a god. That's the problem with people they don't realize it is themselves and nothing more, you are in control, it's your own power and you are responsible for the things in your life both good and bad by the choices you make. Nothing more. God is a crutch created to help people cope with the reality of life how else where they going to keep the peasants in the fields doing all the hard work while those that created religion benefited from it.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:16 pm |
    • Faith Required

      I know it's not me, because he inspires me to be a better person than I am normally. He changes my outlook on things from negative to positive. He helps me to do things that I on my own wouldn't be able to do. He gives me strength that I don't have myself. When I try to do things on my own, with my own counsel, I fail. But when I ask God for wisdom and strength he provides it. Again....unless you've experienced it yourself, you won't understand. But you can't deny something I have experienced myself.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
    • ummm

      "Again....unless you've experienced it yourself, you won't understand. But you can't deny something I have experienced myself."

      Actually I was in a tragic accident but it was my own will power that got me through it knowing deep down no matter what I was going to be okay and get through it. You are selling your own self short, it was YOU all along, your personal strength as a human being. If you weren't so insecure and stop thinking it's God you could be and do far greater things in this world but since you don't have the confidence in yourself it won't happen.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:33 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      Faith Required

      .... Instead of just disagreeing, the comments are so ugly, nasty and sarcastic. Is that really necessary?
      >
      To be honest I feel it is necessary. We all play a part in this thing called life. It adds flavor to a very dull entertainment(christians). From feeding of the lions to present day. We play our parts and it is a win win for you guys. You feel like you are standing up for the magic wizard in the sky while you are used for entertainment. I hope this is not taken the wrong way.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:36 pm |
  8. Faith Required

    I’ve read a lot of the comments after articles in this section and it’s always the same. If the article is religious, especially Christian, all of the atheists jump at the chance to denounce Christianity and the Christians defend their beliefs (some of them condemning the nonbelievers to hell and some genuinely trying to explain their beliefs out of love). But I am absolutely amazed at how quick unbelievers are to squash those who believe in God. Instead of just disagreeing, the comments are so ugly, nasty and sarcastic. Is that really necessary? I think what angers non-believers the most is that we Christians claim to believe in something that cannot ever be proved, that can never be explained logically, and that we claim it to be true. I’ve seen so many atheists and Christians go back and forth….and never get anywhere. Christians by nature are always eager to share the gospel, but the majority of the non-believers that post here are not so much interested, rather they just want to belittle and mock those of us who believe. To those that are Christians, the Bible says for us not to waste time debating the Word with people who don’t believe. They’ve already made up in their minds that they don’t want to. We are to concentrate on those that truly are open to receiving.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
    • ummm

      "the Bible says for us not to waste time debating the Word with people who don’t believe. They’ve already made up in their minds that they don’t want to."

      Yes they had to put that in how else were they going to keep the con going....don't listen to those that make sense. It's a money making scheme and it's worked really well. Heres a thought you have already made up your mind and don't want to listen to reason. It's why we have to keep trying to find those open to understanding the truth of reality.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
  9. frank

    Christians have no self-respect lol.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
  10. To Colin

    If you are more intellectual, smarter and have no delusions...good. Your opinion doesn't bother me, but it saddens me that your "come back" isn't very wise. I'm up to a good argument with someone who can have factual evidence to back up their point, sorry Colin...you let me down. 😦 I'll have a flower arrangement for you when you graduate 6th grade.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      So says the person who cannot even post in the correct spot.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
    • JF

      Says the man behind the curtain.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
    • Richard S Kaiser

      What good is it to "want" to argue TColin? Why do many folks shy away from becoming more maleable in their wordage of choosing a better written and thought out statement that shies away from becoming argumenative? What does such prove? Are you the wiser? Are they?

      August 3, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
    • Colin

      What discussion are you referring to?

      August 3, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
  11. Richard S Kaiser

    As the world does turn,
    the sun it does burn.
    Radiance beyond us all,
    Never once heeding the call.
    Today is but a passing thought
    Remember the ways of one's being bought.
    🙂 😦 🙂 😦 🙂 🙂 🙂

    August 3, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  12. Poopyheads

    Atheists are not poopyheads...just people who don't take responsibility for their actions and have to blame God for the earth's misfortunes. Atheists don't like to see themselves in the mirror of the Bible because it would make them accountable for their evil actions...Atheists are people who were hurt in a church or their family who claimed to be religious yet used that as an excuse to hurt them. God loves the sinner and hates the sin...PERIOD.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • Colin

      If you want to "blame god" for anything, you cannot be an atheist. Atheists do not believe in a god. It would be like blaming Santa for your Xmas presents. This is not hard stuff.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
    • ummm

      "Atheists are people who were hurt in a church or their family who claimed to be religious yet used that as an excuse to hurt them."

      Prove it otherwise you're a liar and a sinner.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
    • Richard S Kaiser

      @ Poopyheads

      Hi PH

      There are at least 3 different types of Atheist as also religious folk. The 1st kind are the parental types The 2nd kind are the adolecent types the 3rd kind are the children. As all were once but children, many do forget their passing days of childhood, hardly ever wanting to remember. As a child becomes an adolecent and or teenager, they seek to be with a pack, just like a pride of lions and lionesses. As a teen eventually seeks a mate, they do sometimes put away their prided past and either learn to become a good parent teaching their neaxt generation of children or they become embroiled with Life's tasks and proclaim, "I;m too busy to be bothered son." Thus the ills of generations does befall upon the next children of the totem pole of Life.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
  13. William D

    One day NO ONE will remember you...but the BIBLE will be here FOREVER...so discredit ALL YOU WANT...haha

    August 3, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • Colin

      I wish there were 5 minutes as theists slipped into death where they had a stunning revelation how wrong they were, but alas, I know it is not so.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
    • JF

      You could potentially say that about any piece of literature.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
    • i wonder

      William D: "the Bible will be here FOREVER..."

      So will the messages of Sumerian cuneiform, Egyptian hieroglyphs, paleolithic cave paintings and lots of other remnants of ancient past cultures. It does not mean that they hold complete truth about reality.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • i wonder

      p.s. Someday today's era will be a past culture too.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
    • Nonimus

      Just a thought, but until one day relatively recently no one knew me at all – then I was born.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  14. J.W

    Atheists are poopy poopheads.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  15. LOL

    How many of you claim that God doesn't exist...yet you keep posting comments against "Someone who doesn't exist"....really smart and amusing....

    August 3, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
    • Colin

      It is impossible to post against something that doesn't exist. We post to help people like you escape your delusion. Some lack the intellectual wherewithall to be lifted up, but some can be helped. Many, I believe.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
    • LOL

      Hey, you stole my handle – I am going to sue you and write CNN and all their executives and claim it's their employees who are doing it. Stealing is a sin – moron! LOL!

      August 3, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
    • LOL

      You're both sinners it's my handle! Get your own da-mn handle.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  16. Do The Future Generations A Favor

    Instead of trashing the Bible... look for ways to help all people and animals on earth...share your money with the poor..visit people in hospitals...clean your local park.... but stop wasting everyone's time and space with bitter and hateful comments. Geez...find something to do in your house...maybe the floor needs to be mopped....

    August 3, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Discrediting the Bible is noble work indeed.

      The misery making book is a symbol of oppression to millions, and its days of being considered relevant are closing.

      Bronze Age comic books with Palestinian Super Heros have no place in a civil and modern society.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • Colin

      Tat's just it. I believe we are doing good by helping people escape the obfuscating fog of religious superst.itions. Imagine a world without religion. Imagine if all the billions of dollars in time, effort and hard cash that we spend worldwide each year worshipping and appeasing make-believe deities of one kind or another were instead funneled into something tangible and worthwhile, like reducing poverty, improving education or protecting the environment. We could probably make huge strides toward curing the chosen ill.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  17. why

    God Thinks You're Wonderful!

    ...It may be difficult for you to believe that God knows your name...but He does.Written on His hand. Spoken by His mouth. Whispered by His lips. Your name.

    August 3, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      Let me guess god told you this or you saw his hand?
      .
      Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that makes it difficult to tell the difference between real and unreal experiences, to think logically, to have normal emotional responses, and to behave normally in social situations.
      As the illness continues, psychotic symptoms develop:
      • False beliefs or thoughts that are not based in reality (delusions)
      • Hearing, seeing, or feeling things that are not there (hallucinations)

      August 3, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
    • why

      @ATCS

      Read the Bible for a change...you will hear God speak to you...
      Now u appear to be hangin out with your beer, that would be u talkin to thyself and appear delusional!!!

      August 3, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      why

      @ATCS

      Read the Bible for a change...you will hear God speak to you...
      Now u appear to be hangin out with your beer, that would be u talkin to thyself and appear delusional!!!
      -------------
      Just cant bring yourself to type ACTS lol. I used to read the bible and used to be a christian. Those days are far behind me. Interesting you think god talks to you through writings of man. If you think the voices in your head is god talking to you more power to you.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • why

      @ACTS

      i see u are one of those rebelious children of God, Christ mentions your like in a parable of the prodigal son...
      here is the good news for you, when you decide to come back there is more rejoicing in heaven for your coming back to HIM...
      We shall pray for you and your brethren..

      August 3, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      why

      @ACTS

      i see u are one of those rebelious children of God, Christ mentions your like in a parable of the prodigal son...
      here is the good news for you, when you decide to come back there is more rejoicing in heaven for your coming back to HIM...
      We shall pray for you and your brethren..
      .
      No plans to and even if I believed your christian god existed I wouldn't find him worthy to worship. I would rather burn than worship a god I did not respect.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
    • Lycidas

      "I wouldn't find him worthy to worship"

      He does not require worship due to your finite opinion of what is worthy.

      August 8, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
  18. Haters

    Our Lord Jesus Christ bless all those who have the courage to stand up for Him but this message is really for the ones who do not believe or mock God.
    IF YOU DON'T BELIEVE IN GOD THEN WHY READ AN ARTICLE THAT HAS A HINT OF RELIGION? If you really want to live and let live, why even bother to post a comment? As a BELIEVER I don't care what YOU believe or don't. STOP making excuses that Christians are force feeding you the Bible or Our Beliefs, I have yet to see anyone being dragged to a church with a gun to their heads! This is A FREE AND CHRISTIAN ROOTED country, we can talk about our Lord ALL WE WANT...if you don't like it skip the article... 🙂

    August 3, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Don't be a dip stick

      The MAJORITY of people who read Mein Kamf knew it ofr the eveil it was

      The SAME applies to the Bible.

      You are spreading poison, and we have an obligation to future generations to keep you and your fellow zealots in check.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      I have yet to see anyone being dragged to a church with a gun to their heads! This is A FREE AND CHRISTIAN ROOTED country, we can talk about our Lord ALL WE WANT...if you don't like it skip the article.
      .
      Evangelicals don't use a gun, rather our government as a weapon to impose their view of morals. You are incorrect, it is a Free country with roots to many religions. The religions have no bearing on the operation of our government. This is not Jesus, Tinker Bell, Allah, God's country. Not sure if the bible has dumbed down some of the christians.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
    • Colin

      For the same reason doctors hang around hospitals. If you want to help cure the sick, you have to go to where the diseases are.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
    • Laughing

      Colin says it best, but lets be clear here, as long as the bible is even remotely taken seriously when it comes to making laws, hiring decisions or really any decision that has any bearing on my life whatsoever, I'll be there to point out just how ridiculous the bible is. If you want to stop hearing from us, then work with us to take christianity out of governement in all shapes and forms, then you'll never hear from us again, I promise.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Haters,
      "...STOP making excuses that Christians are force feeding you the Bible or Our Beliefs..."

      Multiple states have tried to pass legislation to sneak creationism into public science classes. That's a Christian belief.
      Proposition 8 in California, Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) federal, etc. Those are Christian founded beliefs.
      School sponsored prayer or religious activities. That's Christian.
      Attempts to repeal Roe v. Wade. That's Christian influence.
      etc.
      etc.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
    • Colin

      To elaborate on Nominus' post

      Some areas where conservative Christians seek to impose their will on you and I and curtail our behavior, or otherwise adversely impact our lives based on their Bronze Age superst.itions –

      (i) a woman's right to choose. In every state it is under constant Christian attack. In poor countries where the Catholic Church still has real power, it is non-existent.

      (ii) use of condoms and other contraceptives – millions of unwanted pregnancies occur every year.

      (iii) the books we can read. The following great minds have been banned by the catholic church – Galileo, Copernicus, Bruno, Jean Paul Sartre, Voltaire, Denis Diderot, Victor Hugo, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Immanuel Kant, David Hume, René Descartes, Francis Bacon, John Milton, John Locke, and Blaise Pascal.

      (iv) basic $ex education for teens.

      (v) teaching evolution in school. I like the fact that Darwin’s great-great grandson directed this.

      (vi) assisted suicide. Suffering needlessly extended despite the wishes of the sufferer.

      (vii) gay marriage. Actively opposed in all 50 states

      (viii) treating drug abuse as principally a medical issue. Christians love to inflict pain with justification. That is why they invented hell.

      (ix) population control. We are eating many species into extinction and, quite possibly ourselves.

      (x) buying alcohol on a Sunday. Blue laws still exist in may states. In short, I cannot buy a nice bottle of Chilean red wine on a Sunday in Georgia because the Christians believe their god rested on that day after making the entire Universe and its billions of galaxies the previous 6.

      (xi) stem cell research. Sure, let those with curable diseases die because the Christians believe a small group of cells has a “soul”. Dark Ages garbage.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      This blog also serves a good purpose of exposing the christians agenda. Just read some of the posts from the christians. When you really sit and think about the power the christians are pushing for like their muslim taliban brothers in the ME, kind of scary.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      We won't be fighting for freedom from muslims, rather christians in our own country.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @Nonimus & @Colin

      Right on brothers...!

      Peace...

      August 3, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Haters: Thanks for your post because it has allowed many excellent replies.
      But I do have to ask, why can't I read an article about your God or your religion? Do you only read things that you agree with or apply to you? I hope not. Or how can you learn and grow? And then am I not allowed to speak my opinion? Seems to me you are asking that I censor myself so that you feel comfortable. Is that the kind of freedom you're talking about in your post? If you want a place where your religious ideas and opinions are not challenged maybe blogs on the internet aren't for you. I believe you can go to your church for that.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  19. Richard S Kaiser

    Since this “Blog-O-Sphere” is centralized into talking about issues of happenstance moments in one’s life that shaped one’s envisioning perceptions of their today life, I would like to share to the posters just a little bit of my past life. CNN, bear with me as I attempt to be analytical with my word usages.

    It was around the year 1989. I had just gone through a traumatic escapade with my employer and his unwillingness to take out of my paychecks the social security and income taxes. I was a buffoon back then. I was neither educated on how to be a subcontractor nor did I have much want to keep a share of my paycheck in order for a rainy day need. Because I refused to contemplate things rationally, I fell into such a psychotic depression, I did have a blackout spell that lasted for a week or so. My being held at a crisis stabilization facility during this time of paranoia induced psychosis was only reversed by the medications the head psychiatrist had me take. In their report, I was said I was proclaiming to be Christ Jesus in the days before I came out of my psychologically self induced coma.

    Once I was back in touch with reality, I went through bouts of mental distress until I was finally put on a medication that absolved me much of my mental disorder. That was about 6 years ago. I have given up drinking alcohol and smoking p-ot a a while back and now my becoming somewhat emotionally stabile has changed my outlook upon life. I now know I am not Christ Jesus nor was I nor will I ever be Christ Jesus. I am but a somewhat of a simple man with complex thoughts running through my brainyard. I use CNN Belief Blog to better myself in my thought awareness and although I may show signs of embitterment and chaos to you who read and do post here, so choose of that which I write and do post and either meditate upon my words or discard them in file 13.

    I have a new found faith in Christ Jesus; The King of all Gods and LORD of Hosts. He has truly saved me from my wretchedness and wickedry. I still have flaws as do all of us. May GOD, The Father of all fathers and GOD of Creation be ever merciful upon this world of trying to do what’s right peoples.

    August 3, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      Delusional ramblings....dislike button hit
      .
      Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that makes it difficult to tell the difference between real and unreal experiences, to think logically, to have normal emotional responses, and to behave normally in social situations.
      As the illness continues, psychotic symptoms develop:
      • False beliefs or thoughts that are not based in reality (delusions)
      • Hearing, seeing, or feeling things that are not there (hallucinations)

      August 3, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Dude

      Your addiction is showing

      You just traded one drug for another.

      Try and get clean, your current addictions are even worse than your last ones.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • HamsterDancer

      There is no reason to speak cruelly of the lessons some have felt they learned through their experience. Each of us looks at life from out of our own POV and this is Richard's. It is also relevant to the main article.
      His religious revelations may not be suitable for you or me but they are to him. It's what makes your life experiences coherent and well for you internally that matters. As long as you don't try to forcefully impose them on someone else it should be alright.
      The fact that some are taking the insulting route for him seems to speak to something messed up in your POV more than his.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      "my past life" "I had just gone through a traumatic escapade" "Once I was back in touch with reality," "I went through bouts of mental distress until I was finally put on a medication that absolved me much of my mental disorder." "I have given up drinking alcohol and smoking p-ot a a while back and now my becoming somewhat emotionally stabile has changed my outlook upon life." "I use CNN Belief Blog to better myself "

      Reading your Post, seems to me you realized that you had an issue and you worked it out. You said that God did it for you but you only wrote about the things you did. Strange either you did all the work and gave God the credit or ????

      August 3, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Plus you seem to be saying you WERE ill, but now you are not. (as the truley crazy often believe)

      Looking from the outside in, I can assure you that you still have plenty of bats in your belfry!

      The voices in your head, be they God or Napoleon, are ONLY on your head.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
    • Richard S Kaiser

      @ William Demuth

      Will, I am still delusioned in thought progressives and keep to myself ideologies. I yet do fear spilling the whole enchilada. My "original prescription of Zyprxa Zydis was 30 milligrams. I am now down to but 15. Maybe in 5 or so years I will be off the prescribed medicine completely. Now 56 years of age, single and living with my brother, sharing the bills, I am settled into a somewhat of a peaceful Lifestyle. I still say "Of GOD, By God men are "as" gods and do believe such. I have been struggling somewhat in trying to write my Life story but I can only write but a bit each day.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
    • Richard S Kaiser

      @ JohnQuest

      You wrote, "You said that God did it for you but you only wrote about the things you did."

      JQ, I never stated that God did it. I found a new faith in Christ Jesus and until I get it all written down about my views/perspectives I can only live my Life day to day one day at a time.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Richard

      I wish you luck, but remember your future is YOURS.

      While your faith in God may serve you well, there are MANY who would exploit it.

      Keep them at a distance because they will sense your vulnerability and exploit it if they can.

      Be safe

      August 3, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
    • Andy

      Thanks for sharing Richard, that was a great post!

      August 3, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
    • Richard S Kaiser

      @ William Demuth writes; "Plus you seem to be saying you WERE ill, but now you are not. (as the truley crazy often believe)"

      I never said I am no longer ill Will. I still have bouts of dementia and sometimes am full of embitterment but I try to console my ills with my maleable writing technique I am agressing towards. I find comfort in relating to others here who post their Words of thought and thoughtfulness and yes thoughtlessness.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      Richard S Kaiser

      @ William Demuth writes; "Plus you seem to be saying you WERE ill, but now you are not. (as the truley crazy often believe)"

      I never said I am no longer ill Will. I still have bouts of dementia and sometimes am full of embitterment but I try to console my ills with my maleable writing technique I am agressing towards. I find comfort in relating to others here who post their Words of thought and thoughtfulness and yes thoughtlessness.
      -------
      I truly hope you enjoy what time you have before the dementia takes over. Whatever gives you comfort embrace it. I truly mean this.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Richard S Kaiser:
      Thanks for the post. I tend to skip over your posts most times I admit. They are very difficult to read. I wish you the best. Keep working hard and keep taking your meds. I will try to pay more attention to your posts now that I know a little more about you. Best of luck!

      August 3, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
    • frank

      @Richard S Kaiser
      Good luck, brother, you are a good man.

      August 3, 2011 at 6:48 pm |
  20. wgage

    Why is there no "Like" button?

    August 3, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
    • Al

      Like

      August 3, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      Christians do not post enough to like? It would just be something more to litter the blog with.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Becuase this is a religion blog.

      What it needs is a hate, persecute, defraud and bugger button

      August 3, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      William Demuth

      Becuase this is a religion blog.

      What it needs is a hate, persecute, defraud and bugger button

      ----
      That is funny. Lets not forget "Throw to the lions" button.

      August 3, 2011 at 5:05 pm |
    • Atheist

      @Al

      Like

      August 3, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • Normon

      [Throw to Lions] *click*

      August 3, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
1 2 3 4 5
Advertisement
About this blog

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.