Saturday, August 26, 2006

Anonymous said...
Do you ever think that your illness might be related to your disbelief in the grace of salvation from our Lord Jesus Christ?


Despite appearances, I have not been avoiding this question (although, for future reference: If you want to ask a question, it's best to put it in the latest entry's comments).

For those who don't know, this possummom has a life-threatening disease. It's not cancer. It's not AIDS. It's not a plague of biblical proportions. I have lupus...and a few secondary illnesses/syndromes that make the buffet more interesting.

Is my illness related to my disbelief in God? Short answer: no. I fail to see how the over-reaction of my immune system to itself is in any way related to my neurological response to a non-existant stimulus. But, thank you for playing. :) Is the way I deal with disease effected by my disbelief in God? Certainly! When I was first diagnosed with lupus, I was "a believer". And, I spent two years asking "WHY?" I had three miscarriages, directly related to lupus. I pleaded with God to help me...to fix me. I even went so far as to seek the advice and blessing of a priest. It was during this time that my faith waivered...not because God didn't fix me. But, because I realized that some things can't be fixed. For better or for worse, sometimes the situation is what it is. There's no point. There's no celestial reward. There's no punishment. It just is. I didn't do anything to predispose myself to lupus. I don't drink. I don't do drugs. I don't smoke. In fact, I can count the number of times that I've drank on one hand. I've never committed any really heinous crimes. Never committed any huge sins. I've always tried to be a good person. So... why? Why would God give a mother of four, healer of mankind, good person a fatal, chronic, painful disease? That's certainly not the action of a benevolent God. In the end, I concluded that I won some sadistic, but natural, genetic lottery. In the end, I stumbled upon a trigger (somewhere, somehow) and had the genetic floorplan for lupus to set-in. Yay me...or something. In a way, it makes me alot more comfortable to know that this WASN'T the mandate of a bored, malicious diety. This has been the greatest "life lesson": Shit happens! Once you accept that, you are free from the manipulation and emotional strangulation that comes from theistic ideology. Once you accept what "is" and what is "known", you can start to look for answers. Healing becomes an aggressive goal, as opposed to a passive hope.

8 comments:

erin said...

Because our Lord Jesus Christ likes to....punish people with illnesses?? Or is anonymous saying that if you were a believer, it'd be fixed? Because believers never contract a life-threatening disease. Your answer is brilliantly worded of course, but the logic of even asking that question is currently escaping me.

Atheist in a mini van. said...

That is why I love you, Erin.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with Erin...how very Christian of the person that asked you...you don't believe in God, so he gets back at you by cursing you with this disease?? *rolls eyes* Uh huh, sure.

Sara

Atheist in a mini van. said...

Love you, too, Sassy. :)

Virginia aka Ginny said...

Anytime anything unpleasant happened in my life while married to my ex husband, his sister would say it's because I didn't believe in God. It probably didn't have anything to do with the fact that her brother was a loser. lol

erin said...

Right back atcha!

Martin Wagner said...

It would appear "anonymous" doesn't realize that believers get ill, too.

(Thought I'd check your blog out, since you commented on mine. ;-) Thou art bookmarked.)

Atheist in a mini van. said...

Hey Martin,
Thanks for the bookmark! :)
And, I can't nod my head fast enough to agree with you... if a belief in God is the way to avoid disease/injury, then why would theists need doctors/nurses/medications?