Sunday, August 29, 2010

From Christian to Atheist Pt. 4

It was about 1985 when I back slid from the church and my Christian ways, I had been in the church for about a year in a half. At the same time it was a tough year in a half for me personally, so much so that I found it impossible to serve God and deal with my personal issues all at once. I had made an oath to myself in those days that if I can't serve the Lord one hundred percent then I would not serve him at all. It would not be until 1990 till I came back to the ways of God and began to serve him and returned to the church once again on a mission and on fire for God.

I had gone to the Park one afternoon a few blocks away from my house and all of a sudden this van pulls up. Out came the Spanish Pentecostals with mics and speakers etc. and within a few minutes of their arrival they were preaching and those that came along were handing out bible tracts to everyone around. I sat there and listened to the evangelist preach his message and when he made the altar call I responded but my only intention was to receive some prayer. Then as he prayed for me he stopped and told me that God had revealed to him that he wanted me to accept him then and there and that I should testify. I did as I was told and then after the street service was over the evangelist invited me to their next church service.

That day I arrived home from that service and told my mother that I had accepted the Lord back into my life and that I would be attending church very soon. I went straight to the garbage can and reached into my pocket and pulled out the pack of cigarettes I had there and tossed them in the can. As I did so I recall saying to myself : "If I am going to serve the Lord, it's all or nothing". With those words began my second foray into the search for holiness and divine guidance into whatever it was that I believed God called me for. I began once again to pray fervently and constantly seeking the presence of the Lord. I delved into the scriptures daily, seeking guidance and answers to my own situation; things that spoke to my heart and at the same time seemed to speak to me directly.

I began attending church and that same evangelist that found me in the park became my closest friend and ally in the church. It wasn't long before he invited me to partake with him in his street ministry which he conducted every weekend without fail. We would preach in two different sections of Brooklyn, NY on Saturdays and Sundays looking for the lost souls of the world and hoping to lead them into the light of Christ. It also wasn't long before I was back at it casting out demons and praying for the sick and watching people pass out to my own amazement just by a mere touch of my hand or stare. I had matured this time much more than when I was in high school so I was a much more effective evangelist my second time around.

Within a year I was already preaching in many Spanish churches in the community, and often would get invites to partake in outdoor tent revivals. Sometimes I preached or when my partner in the ministry preached in Spanish I would serve as his interpreter in English. With our combined efforts we were bringing in new church members every week and our congregation began to grow quite fast. I went on like this for about 3 years and then came two events that became the turning point in my life that led me to once again doubt the veracity of scripture and even the very existence of God! On my next post I will go into this in depth so I will see you all then.


  1. My Dear your words are really amazing, you would have known and understood that being a Christian is not an easy way, there are many temptations and suffering as the Lord suffered (Jesus Christ), also known that Christianity is not about confidence on people but to the Lord only, remember: Rom 8:28 "And we are conscious that all things are working together for good to those who have love for God, and have been marked out by his purpose". I will pray for you, but I hope you to come back to the Lord's path, also I have to mention you that is in 2Pe 2:21 "For it was better for them not to have recognized the way of righteousness than having recognized it to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them" At the end I can remember you that God loves you and what is written in Pro 24:16 "for a just one falls seven times and rises up again, but the wicked shall stumble into evil."

    Best Regards.

    Ricardo Salinas.

  2. Hi Chat, I'm enjoying your series of From Xtian to Atheist. I'm not sure we need religion to guide our moral path, I'm wondering what we would believe had we never heard of a god or jebus.

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  4. Horrible spelling the first comment I put in.

    If history is any indication, we certainly do not need religion to guide our moral path. The "do no harm" credo of secular morality certainly would have resulted in the term 9/11 being just another date.

  5. Thanks for your comments everyone it is good to hear from you all. Dennis regarding your question I think we would do just fine as a species without a belief in God. I believe that morals are a matter of society and culture. Our society as a whole dictates what is right and wrong.

  6. "God had revealed to him that he wanted me to accept him" Creepy BS and why does God reveal the obvious like a fortune teller could say.
    I too had that black and white thinking. All or nothing. It is a sickness. It places me in a position where I must fail. That drove me quite insane.

  7. Finally, a chance to read this entire series.

    "If I am going to serve the Lord, it's all or nothing".

    I wonder what it is that causes this mindset? Well, actually, I don't wonder. It's peer pressure, mostly. I recall one fundy church I attended, that had Revelation 3:16 ("Since you are lukewarm and neither hot nor cold, I am going to spit you out of my mouth. ...") as a banner along one wall. I guess it's not just religion either -- many areas of life demand that adherents adopt the "all or nothing" mindset. All that leads to, IMO, is extremism and a feeling of being forced to remain on one narrow path, rather than feeling the freedom to check out alternative paths that might possibly work better for the individual, with the option of returning to a different path. It not only scares a lot of people away from religion (which, of course, is a good thing anyway, LOL), but it also leads to something much more dangerous: Hypocrisy and self-blindness.

    I love reading other people's de-conversion stories.