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Dear Evangelical, I’m Not Interested in Your God Talk or Jesus Blessing

force beliefs

Snark ahead! You’ve been warned!

Today, I made my monthly pilgrimage to my primary care doctor’s office. We discussed how the Cincinnati Bengals and the Cleveland Browns are doing and we talked about how difficult it is to sit on the sidelines as our adult children go through life’s difficulties. It was also time for prescription refills, one sent to Meijer, three to Caremark, and three written controlled substance scripts. I also got a flu and pneumonia shot. I mentioned a large lump in my upper abdomen. Hmm, the doctor said, and referred me to a surgeon for a consult. Probably a cyst or a fibroma, and not likely malignant, but I will have to have it checked, especially since I’ve been treated for skin cancer three times, twice in the last 3 months.  Always something. (I learned MRI’s and CT scans do not see masses like this)

After my visit was over, we exited the examination room and headed for the clinic waiting area. As we walked through the door we heard the loud voice of an Evangelical Christian. An obese man, wearing a shirt with a gaudy Halloween pumpkin on it, was going from person to person, often touching them, blessing them in the name of Jesus. JESUS LOVES YOU, he told several people, and he told the receptionist, KEEP DOING A WONDERFUL WORK FOR GOD!!

Really?, I thought to myself. While I’m sure this man was well-intentioned, thinking he was just paying everyone a big compliment, his behavior and words were quite offensive. I wanted to say to him, shut the fuck up…I’m not interested in your Jesus blessing. But, I didn’t. You see, I’m polite and don’t engage people in unwanted discussion about religion or politics.  I respect people enough to keep my opinions to myself. If I’m asked a question or someone wants to engage me in a discussion, I will gladly do so, but I think it is rude to blather on about religion or politics uninvited.

jesus fart
Cartoon by Robb Mirsky

Unfortunately, many Evangelicals think they have the right to go into a room and rip the loudest, foulest fart and everyone is supposed to inhale deeply and love it. They are oblivious, it seems, to the fact that most people do not want to listen to their God talk, nor do they want a Jesus blessing, a prayer, or any of the other things Evangelicals love to force on others. Why do Evangelicals think this kind of behavior is appropriate? Entitlement? Calling from God? Jesus Gas® that must be expelled lest the Evangelical implode?

The receptionist smiled, but as the man turned to walk away she rolled his eyes and frowned. She’s probably a Christian, but even she was embarrassed by Mr. Evangelical’s God talk and Jesus blessing. Fortunately, he didn’t address me directly, nor did he touch me. If he had, since I was having a don’t touch me pain day, he likely would have not liked my response. Count me as one person who is tired of Evangelicals who think they have a God-given right to invade the private space of others. When I am at the doctor’s office, I intensely feel my mortality. Every checkup is a reminder that things are not well for me and that death is closer than it was the last time I was at the doctor’s office. I don’t need a  loudmouth Jesus freak saying anything to me. Save it for the church house or for those who are part of the Evangelical tribe.

Imagine for a moment that a Satanist, a Muslim, or an Atheist was loudly and indiscriminately broadcasting their beliefs. Imagine the Satanist going up to an Evangelical, laying their hand on them, and saying, BLESSINGS IN THE NAME OF BEELZEBUB! Imagine the Muslim going up to the receptionist and saying, KEEP DOING A WONDERFUL WORK FOR ALLAH!! Imagine the Atheist going from person to person in the waiting room and, with a loud voice, telling them THERE IS NO GOD!  We all know how Evangelicals would react, right? Why can’t they see themselves in the same light and realize that such behavior is patently rude and offensive?

[signoff]

6 Comments

  1. Avatar
    Charity

    And I detest being someone’s “friendship evanglism” project. I am not a prodigal, I am a deconvert NOT looking to reconvert. Take me as I am or don’t get into my business at all.

    I know what it’s like Bruce. I hope your health gets a lot better. Here’s to scientific cures for your pain.

  2. Avatar
    Zoe

    Well this atheist may have spoken up and played the roll of a believer and rebuked the man in the name of Jesus and pointed out it was probably guys like him that caused Jesus to get in a boat and tell the disciples with him to row to the other side.

    Today, I’m not sure I could stand for it. Like you, I don’t speak about being an atheist without being asked but in this situation from my vantage point today I could see me standing up and telling the man to keep his hands and his prayers to himself and go find a closet.

  3. Avatar
    Troy

    I’m guessing this guy wasn’t fighting his socially ingrained personal spatial limit. I’m guessing he was some sort of social retard, but if he wasn’t then I wonder if he got that creepy nervous smile that only comes when a person is resiting social norms for the holy spirit.

    I’ve only been scared once by an evangelical person. I was doing astronomy at a local deserted elementary school’s playground (so I’m alone and it is dark). A noisy black muscle car came into the parking lot of the school blasting Christian heavy metal and obviously changed its trajectory off the near by road because the driver spotted me. Through the fence the driver dropped some fundy tracts near me explaining he wanted to give these to me. I looked up astonished and probably muttered out an “OK”. And he left the same way he came in with car revving and Christian rock blaring. That’s no way to get converts, let me tell you.

  4. Avatar
    Connie

    Bruce,

    Thank you times seven for teaching me the “Games Evangelicals Play”. I’ve been engaged with a died in the wool christian who is haunting another site and he is… disappointing really. I thought maybe this person would really listen only they do not.

    The commentator is using the Bait and Switch, God is the Only Rule That Counts, and my favorite – the False Inquiry as to How You Were So Hurt and We Aren’t Like Those Others Who Hurt You. Blech.

    While the battle is intoxicating, the results are flat. Ultimately the only way I can win is if he renounces his literal faith in his holy book. I’m not sure I’m ready to push that hard on this individual. It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye – amirite?

    Going forward I can only point out the glaring hypocrisy and challenge the prejudices that make living in an integrated society difficult.

    You do battle with physical issues every day – and you take on the evangelicals who like to dive bomb your site. Not sure how you do it all but amazingly grateful that you do. Thanks again. 🙂

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