I’ll Take The Wheel, Thank You

jesustakethewheelThis morning, I was watching The Voice and one of the contestants chose “Jesus Take The Wheel” for her song. I was disappointed. I thought, “lame.” Then she started singing. She’s good and at first I thought I was just moved by her voice, but then as the lyrics unfolded, I began to cry. It freaked me out, because I thought “What the hell? What’s wrong with me? Jesus isn’t real.” Jesus isn’t real. The realization came to me, as it had so many times before and I was grieving. That’s all it was.  It’s kind of like when someone you love more than anything passes away. There will be something that just pops up that reminds you of them and then you grieve all over again. That’s how it was for me when she started singing.

This is something only an ex-Christian can understand. From the time I was 3 or 4, I really believed there was a man named Jesus that loved me no matter what and loved me so much that he suffered and died so that I could live. He heard my prayers and always did what was best for me. I loved him, and then he was gone. When I felt the tears start, part of me was pissed because I had been spoon-fed a lie. A lie that affected my whole life, to the point that when years later I hear a song, I grieve all over again. But, also, part of me was relieved, because my grief is okay—expected. It’s okay for me to grieve loss and that’s what that was.

I think at the beginning of my de-conversion, I didn’t allow myself tears because that could mean I still believe, or that I’m going to get sucked back in. Now though, I realize it’s just the affirmation that there was someone in my life (albeit a myth) that I loved and depended on, more than anyone else and now he is gone—dead and when something reminds me of him, I grieve. To be honest, I miss him.

What I think Christians don’t understand about many ex-Christians is that we wanted to believe that the Jesus/God of the Bible was real. We never wished him dead—quite the opposite, but desiring something to be true or real, doesn’t make it so. Does it?  The truth is, there was never anyone there to “take the wheel” for me when I felt out of control. It was always just me and although I may shed tears over the loss, I’ve never felt more whole.  I’ve never felt more in control.  So Jesus, I’ll keep my hands on the wheel.  I’m doing just fine, thank you.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. ... Zoe ~
    Nov 07, 2015 @ 15:51:19

    Yes I think it’s something an ex-Christian can and does understand. Full confession. I’ve always hated that song. If you know someone who has died at the wheel or almost died or died because of someone else at the wheel, you are left wondering, Where Was Jesus Then? WWJT? So the whole “wheel” thing for me is literal. But yes when it comes to “control” and feeling out of it, Jesus did come in handy. Just throw those hands in the air and let “Him” take over. It worked too didn’t it? In so many ways. Or so we believed.

    I can’t sleep. It’s 2:39 a.m. and my problematic bowels are grumbling so loudly that it would be easier to sleep with a train running through the house. Then I couldn’t hear the rumbling grumbles. Reminds me of the many nights I sat on then toilet screaming in pain into my pillow, holding myself up with the towel bar, constantly asking Jesus to take the wheel, wondering if I could catch my breath to take another breath and often praying for permanent relief even if that meant death.I had no idea that even then the entire way of belief kept me sick. Stress.

    I still to this day don’t hate God. How often do we hear that? That we hate God. And there is no way around it even when we try to explain that one can’t hate someone who doesn’t exist. I don’t even hate the idea of, the concept of or the myth of God. I hate the literalization of God and that’s not a “God” problem it is a human problem. And I hate that humans are so tribal about it all that though they claim peace, there is no peace.

    So good to read something from you again. ❤

    Reply

    • notabarbie
      Dec 15, 2015 @ 03:23:42

      I thought I had approved this post ages ago. Well, here it is now and quite timely I might add, because I’ve been thinking a lot about the whole
      “Atheists hate god,” and other misrepresentations of us. Also, I feel your pain, Zoe. I wonder why some of us finally said, “You know what? God must not be here, because if he is, well, he’s an asshole I don’t want to believe in or pray to him or her anymore,” and some still cling to the belief in an omnipresent god, no matter how absent he, or she seems to be. Anyway, more on that later and I hope you are feeling better. Thanks for the comment ❤

      Reply

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