Yep, I’m a Christian Atheist.
It took me some time to acknowledge that this title fits me. To be fair, I’m still not proud to hold this title but it’s true. I’m an active, practicing Christian Atheist.
“There is a difference between believing in God, and trusting in God. The most difficult and challenging threat to Christianity is not atheism but, Christian atheism. Believing in God, but living as if He isn’t real. And that affects the church more than atheism. And the threat to our faith comes from us who say we believe in God, but the question is ‘do you live your life as if God isn’t real?’ Do you act as if there is no God, even though you sing and worship in church, and then when the service is over, do you really trust that God?”
—Pastor John Wesley-Howard
I unequivocally believe in the existence of God yet, I don’t trust God with everything in my life. I have a mental rubric of what I feel I can/should trust God with and what Danyelle should be able to handle on her own accord. I operate in the mindset that God gives us many tools for us to handle and solve problems on our own. I’ve always resented the teaching that you take E V E R Y T H I N G to God in prayer. Like, did God not give you common sense or…?
But, is this type of mindset reflective of trusting God completely? Am I living my life as if God isn’t real by trying to define what’s God-tier and Danyelle-tier?
One of my greatest struggles is striking a balance between emotion and logic. If asked, my best friend would probably tell you it’s my unyielding logical self that drives her absolutely nuts about me. She’s incredibly emotionally driven and I’m unquestionably logically led. There’s two things that cause the greatest upsets for logic-driven people: religious faith and love/relationships.
One of my present struggles is dating. I think I’m undateable for a myriad of reasons that have been socially reinforced. I’m not a petite woman (I’m 5’8″, 22/24 dress size) and oft cite this as a reason that I’m not approached by men as frequently as my smaller friends and associates. The first response is that I could/should lose weight. My retort is that my weight will be variable my whole life but my body shouldn’t be a prerequisite to my eligibility to date. Logically I know there are suitable partners who will not need to “look past” me to see me and the beauty within. Yet, if you ask me, even men who are physically attracted to me will not want me for some reason or another (my education, my salary, my decision of celibacy). Ultimately, I’ll tell you it’s everything but what I’m projecting. And I’ll tell you I think it’s illogical to pray about it.
I’m serious. I truly think that praying about having a partner seems stupid. Like how cliche can I get praying about having a man? How much of a lonely, vapid person do I have to be to pray about that? People out here praying for real things and I’m praying about some bulls**t of having a man? Why does that matter to God? Surely this is a Danyelle-tier problem because all of my aforementioned arguments as to why I’m undateable are surely fixable by my own hand, right?
Yet, that’s not living like God exists. It’s living like He doesn’t and that He is incapable of handling all things. It’s living like a Christian Atheist.
God cares because my feeling of being undateable (and thusly unloveable from an Eros perspective) hurts me. God cares because he knows that hurt will root itself as bitterness and cause distance between he and I. He cares because he cares about me as His own. The Christian Atheist has a hard time accepting this because it makes them realize how inept we are in our own power and accord. It’s forces us to evaluate our true submission to the God we sing worship songs about each Sunday.
Prayer reveals to me that my issues are rooted in distrust of men and in relinquishing the issues to God. This is when I realize that my issue is not Danyelle-tier, it’s God-tier. I have to decide to trust God to make me strong enough to know I am always good enough. I have to trust Him to know that discerning wisdom will speak and show a person’s true motives. I have to trust God to give me enough strength to not make continued mistakes as I have in previous relationships. Danyelle has work on TRUST and the first person I have to fully trust is the spirit of the living God in ME.
I don’t have a nice, neat button to end this post. I can’t tell you that I’m 100% improved with unwavering trust and belief. I’m honestly working on it and admittance is the first step. Maybe your issue isn’t dating, but you might be struggling with Christian Atheism too. I tell my story to tell you that you’re not alone, weak, or less of a believer. We’re in this fight together.
Loved this post? You’ll love my book, Closed Legs do Get Fed.