To start I'll say that I am pretty much all the way over into agnostic territory these days. I still believe that there is a God and I'm holding onto that belief with both hands. However, I honestly don't think I can be considered a Christian any longer. It's not that I don't believe in Jesus, I'm just not sure what He did or for whom, but what I do know is that I pretty much don't believe in the bible itself anymore...and can you really be a Christian if you don't follow the Bible?
I could go on and on about why and one day maybe I will, but mostly I'll just say that I no longer believe the 'divine inspiration, infallible word of God' aspect of the bible. I now believe it was written by very infallible men and then translated over and over by very infallible (and perhaps even corrupt) men with political and cultural agenda
(And don't even get me started on how I think many churches ACT like they feel the same way...picking and choosing what to follow and what to throw out. Another post for another time, perhaps!)
As for the gospel and Jesus, as much as it pains me to say this: I don't know. I just don't. I WANT to know and believe, I'm just not sure. Right now there is very little ground under my feet (do you know what i mean by that?) and I haven't been able to get my head around Jesus and who I think he was or what I think he did quite yet.
What I do believe is that God, in whatever form He exists, HAS GOT TO BE far, far bigger than any religion could possibly begin to conceive or imagine. Once I allowed myself to openly study different aspects of the universe, it became clearer that Christianity's version of God (or ANY earthly religion's view of him) is tiny. Small. Earth focused. Very rigid and very, very limited by our own constructed religion and beliefs. I feel like we've created our version of God BASED on what the Bible says, instead of allowing Him to be whatever He is based on WHAT HE ACTUALLY IS.
At any rate, a lot has changed within me, or maybe its just that I've finally admitted what has always been there, just beneath the surface. Many people would probably say that I must have never been saved in the first place, and maybe they are right. Truth be told, I've been a doubter since early childhood, always asking my mom questions on how we could possibly know our way was the right way and all the others had it wrong. So, maybe I never truly committed myself to Christianity, I don't know. I know that I truly felt like I did. I sincerely tried. I cried out to God repeatedly in desperation to know Him, to find Him, for the faith to believe more times than I can count. I've lain face-down on my bedroom floor crying out to Him over and over again. I've participated in Bible study after Bible study, read book after book, fasted and prayed, gone to church for years. Yet, here I am, filled with more doubt than faith.
Those who believe in predestination would say I am just not one of the elect. Honestly, if the Bible really is true then I can actually buy into this one. I just don't get it as easily and naturally as the Christians I see around me. I can't just embrace faith and shut off the questions and doubts. Never have been able to do that, no matter how hard I tried. So...maybe I just wasn't chosen by God to be saved. I don't know.
What I do know is that I can't pretend anymore and I can't simply silence what is screaming inside of me to get out any longer. And PLEASE know that this isn't something I take lightly. I have struggled and wrestled and mentally beaten myself bloody trying to hold onto my faith. I WANT to believe. I've begged and pleaded with God time and time again to give me the faith to believe. I WANT to just keep going and ignore this. I WANT to make things simpler and just fall back into the patterns of my faith.
I just don't know how.