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The short answer is that God does not hate you. He loves you deeply. He hates what sin has done to you. God created a perfect world that sin corrupted and destroyed. The great news of the gospel is that we can be free of sin! When we consider just how sinful we are before God, it can lead to a painful sense of just how horrible and sinful we really can be. Sin can lead to deeply painful emotions. We have all experienced instances when we do something that we know to be sinful, instances when we consciously made the choice to sin, and it makes us wonder if God is mad at us. We wonder if he is somewhere out there punishing us for our bad behavior and rewarding us for our good behavior.
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While I broke with fundamentalist religion somewhere around , I still struggle. As any therapist will tell you, old mental habits take a long time to break. My inner concept of God still sees him as an all-powerful being that is infinite at everything- including being pissed off. Even looking at the cross under old paradigms of thinking, I still see a Jesus who is dying to protect me from his angry dad- letting dad beat him mercilessly so that I can run out of the room to safety. I remember when we first realized we were losing our daughter— the situation quickly disintegrated, and we knew that loss was probably inevitable. Did I have a lustful thought that caused God to decide to punish me with the loss of a child? I lay awake at am frequently wrestling with this, because I feel like a horrible hypocrite.
If you or someone you know is considering suicide, know that resources are available. Text: , call TALK , or visit www. Reading this article made me deeply sad, because it made me realize just how many incorrect ideas about God are still out there, and how deeply those ideas are hurting people. We are the ones who have created societies in which individuals are judged based on their physical appearance or on their membership in particular demographic groups, rather than on the content of their character or according to their unique gifts and skills. The Rev.