Gary Larson Depicted IT So Well...

Gary Larson Depicted IT So Well...

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Reasoning with religious friends . . .

With my friend D (friends since the age of 9), we went back & forth - and he decided He Could Not Handle Being Around Me

From ELM: I am truly at a loss as to why you believe you have to see things exactly as I do to continue to treat me as a close friend. We do not have to see things eye-to-eye. If you are honest with yourself, you do not see ANYTHING exactly eye-to-eye with anyone else on this earth. You have your own way of seeing the things you think you see ‘similarly’ with your loved ones and friends.


Please grant me the courtesy of reading your letter & then when you come upon a side-notation(A); then read my applicable side-note.

-----Original Message-----From: D -- Sent: Thursday, December 06, 2007 -- To: ELM -- Subject: My Very Hard Decision - To Follow The Bible or To Accept My Friend's Lifestyle.

ELM, You don't get it. To accept your lifestyle(1) means the Bible is wrong! If the (2)Bible is wrong here then maybe it is wrong about alcoholics, drug abusers, and adulterers(3). The biggest reason(4) I even try to avoid my past lifestyle is due to disobeying God and the consequences that will surely follow. Jesus said, "If you love Me then obey Me."(5)

If I give up on the Bible being true cover to cover then my faith will go(2). I then would want to live as I pleased(4) and not to please God.

True, we are all sinners. To know the truth and to sin anyway is what displeases God more. The lady that got caught in adultry was later told by Jesus to go and sin no more. He forgave her sin but then told her to stop it.

I worked for two gay men today and have been there many times. I've worked for gay women a few times too. They are not openly confessing to know(6) Jesus(7)
and then saying that the Bible is wrong about homosexuals.

To know the truth and then to deny it as you have is the problem I have with you ELM.

I've attended many meetings with alcoholics, drug abusers, and sometimes wife cheaters, who stumble but keep getting up to try to put this lifestyle behind them. This is what incourages me(8).

Always your friend(9).


From ELM: One last time going for reason > >
Firstly, are these your words or are you asking others to do your thinking for you? You're too old to not use your God-given head.

D, I think it's you who doesn't get it.

(1) You were born a Caucasian – God made you that way – is that a lifestyle?

(2) Are you saying that you believe the entire Bible is wrong if there are any discrepancies? That belief would be very scary because I'm sure you've seen and questioned ones before. So to hold the belief that the whole Bible is wrong if any discrepancy is found causes you to ignore any discrepancy? So are you saying your faith is not in God but in the scribes who wrote the various books; later decided by other leaders what would be included in the many 'books' of the Bible (a compilation)?

(3) Do you need a Dictator 'lifestyle' because you feel you'll run wild if you don't live under the rule of say, "They'll cut your hand off if you steal." So, only because they will cut off your hand – you won't steal?

(4) What about the reason that it doesn't serve you well; bring out the best in you? That you really don't want (in your heart) to do those things that go against the person you want to be?

(5) Love thy neighbor as yourself. Are you saying you can't hang around with someone like you?

(6) How do you know?

(7) So, you only hang around with people who believe exactly as you do? What if you had Episcopalian, Methodist, Lutheran...friends who believe in Christ and see things about the Bible differently than you do? They can't be your friends unless they believe exactly as you do about all things? You are segregating me to be lower than all others you are "allowing" to hang out with you.

(8) So, I need to be a drug, alcohol and prostitute abuser to encourage & hang-out with you?

(9) It would have been easier had you not come to Yuma to reintroduce yourself into my life as a life-long friend...because now you're the one I'm afraid has bolted.

I love you and accept you with all your character attributes AND want to have you in my life
(and do things with you as a friend) – cuz I Love you and enjoy doing things with you.
**** **** **** **** **** **** **** **** ****
What follows is a letter to another of my friends who holds the same extreme religious views to which I previously subscribed (after they sent me quite a venomous email).
As the future unfolds, I hope you’ll come to a point of lessened venom.
It is sad that you would “expect” the worst.
My behavior was unarguably despicable; the key word being “was”.
Forgiveness is not within my control; it is also not for me as much as for those harmed…so they can stop reliving the pain and heal.
I debated for years about ever returning (thinking for many more years that I would never return) because of reactions like yours – that it would be cruel to return and re-open unexplained (hopefully healed) wounds. After much debate, it was concluded that my return would help to bring closure and healing and that is very much a part of why I am here. I have received much encouragement that my return was warranted with regards to healing, recapturing love and closure.
I sent the note only so you could know the instability that prompted the mindset for the ‘despicable’ behavior.
P.S. Only recently did I come to terms with acceptance from God and therefore acceptance of myself as a valid human worthy of my place on earth. Only recently, have I begun to accept myself and begun the process of loving myself. With this personal acceptance, I have decided never to allow anyone to enslave me again into hating myself.