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Jeremeyn, exceedingly well put. I love that.

Ok.... *cracks knuckles, stretches* All you old-timers, time to roll your eyes and put on your headphones, because you've heard this speech before.

The pain and suffering in my life is the reason I believe in God. How does one live through drug addiction, homelessness, child abuse without delving into dysfunction and self-hatred so deep that it kills you? How does one find the hope to continue?

Rather, the question is how did *I* find hope?

God.

Because I am still here. Despite my best efforts, and believe me, there have been some pretty fantastic efforts, directly and indirectly, on my life - I am still here with the full capacity to live, to love, to wake up cursing and crying and to wake up smiling and joyous. I have not been destroyed, no matter what the world and those in it have found it within them to do to me, no matter what I had found myself doing to myself.

I'm not saying there aren't aethists with checkered pasts, in fact, many of them have triumphed over dangerous issues in their own lives that would have killed them. But where one would see only the strength of a human being in that, I know that my luck isn't that good and that without something out there watching over me, I'd currently be in various states of decay six feet under.

Did God give me acne? Why doesn't God take it away? I don't know. But I know as nothing else has destroyed me, neither will this, and I have God to lean on as I walk along.

*clears throat*

Rant over. Your regularly scheduled debating can now continue.

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Jeremeyn, exceedingly well put. I love that.

Ok.... *cracks knuckles, stretches* All you old-timers, time to roll your eyes and put on your headphones, because you've heard this speech before.

The pain and suffering in my life is the reason I believe in God. How does one live through drug addiction, homelessness, child abuse without delving into dysfunction and self-hatred so deep that it kills you? How does one find the hope to continue?

Rather, the question is how did *I* find hope?

God.

Because I am still here. Despite my best efforts, and believe me, there have been some pretty fantastic efforts, directly and indirectly, on my life - I am still here with the full capacity to live, to love, to wake up cursing and crying and to wake up smiling and joyous. I have not been destroyed, no matter what the world and those in it have found it within them to do to me, no matter what I had found myself doing to myself.

I'm not saying there aren't aethists with checkered pasts, in fact, many of them have triumphed over dangerous issues in their own lives that would have killed them. But where one would see only the strength of a human being in that, I know that my luck isn't that good and that without something out there watching over me, I'd currently be in various states of decay six feet under.

Did God give me acne? Why doesn't God take it away? I don't know. But I know as nothing else has destroyed me, neither will this, and I have God to lean on as I walk along.

*clears throat*

Rant over. Your regularly scheduled debating can now continue.

AMEN SISTER!!! i'm right there with you...

bottom line - there are believers and non believers...it is what it is.....just because you're one or the other doesn't mean you should automatically dismiss the other's position...that's ignorance at its finest..if anything, agree to disagree.....nothing wrong with a healthy debate, but hurling insults with the intent to try and disprove or undermine another's belief system is about as unhealthy as it gets.....seek to understand or don't - either way, the only belief system we are in control of is OUR OWN......

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Again, people, I still don't think anyone is addressing her original issue.

She didn't ask for a religious debate, she asked for support, in a sense, with her shame and feelings of discouragement with acne.

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Doesn't matter anymore. She didn't bother to reply to the answers on her own thread so no point in helping a ghost.
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see, heres the thing. My view on a higher power is that they can't possibly solve everything or else they'd be acccountable for everything. Like the holocaust. Honestly, you think having acne is bad????? what about terminal cancer and being a single parent? or living through the holocaust?

my personal view is that if there is a higher power they are here to help us get through things not to magically make them better.

if you think of it that way, you'll feel less like a victim. Its better to feel empowered over your situation than victimized.

I have a few serious disabilities, some days i feel like shit and am sorry i was born, but the truth is the only person who can change the way i see the world is me. The world isn't going to change for me.

its like what Ghandi said "be the change you want to see in the world"

you have to change the way you think because the world sure as hell isnt' going to change for you, you have to make changes YOURSELF.

focus on empowering yourself instead of feeling out of control, you'd be amazed what you can do when you think of what you HAVE to give instead of what you WISH you had, god or no god.

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I am not into the mambo jambo stuff like e.g.if you don't pray everyday you're going to hell. That's why alhtough I'm a catholic I no longer go to church or do anything related to my religion, unless it's a family thing like funerals or weddings. Sometimes on forms I put "N.A" under "religion". If i have kids I efinitely won't want my child to be baptised, I want him/her to have the freedom of choice.

But I see the beauty of our world and it's so difficult to imagine that someone powerful isnt' responsible for it all. And how can there be a world without suffering, if there's no suffering people would be complacent. I don't believe that God is responsible for our acne or wars though. But as human beings one of our strengths is to rise above sufferings and strengthen our resolve..that's why we are different from animals. Half of the things that are experienced are more or less directly caused by humans like wars and STDs.

I respect atheists, I feel closer to them than people who go to church. Sometimes I feel scornful at other people's beliefs, like I have muslim friends and I see how much religion has interferred with their lives i.e the must eat only halal food so that means they are fussy about their food which means going out with them can be a major pain. Also buddhists or taoists who can't eat certain meat like beef. I feel very thankful that I'm not born under such strict religion. But then if they feel their religion makes them feel good, then who am I to judge them? It's their lives they can' believe in whatever they want as long as it's not at the expense of other people, like those crazed religious radicals.

Edited by pchic
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Does anyone else find it difficult to love and trust God when you have acne? I was raised a Christian all my life. I am 33 years old

And you still believe in God!?

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I do consider acne to be a "curse from above". Why he picks individuals out to place this punishment on for no certain reason is beyond my knowledge.

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Right I don't think I'm going to be very popular but here goes...

I can't believe that in the 21st century people still think that there is a creator God that is actively involved in the ins and outs of their everyday lives. You just have to look around you to see that this is not the case. Here is an old philosophical argument:

Good is all good:

1. Bad things happen to good people.

2. Therefore, either God is not all good (as an all loving God could not logically allow bad things to happen to those he had an all-consuming love for), or God does not exist.

Now, I'm not saying that God doesn't exist, far from it, I'm a spiritual person. However to attribute a disease to the intangible (in this case God) is illogical and actually quite insulting -

Why did God condemn millions of innocent people to death by the hands of Nazi Germany?

Why did God allow thousands to die on 9/11 and 7/7?

Why does God allow countless children to be neglected and abused every day?

Are people going to tell me that God ignored / ignores their prayers, but answers yours over something as relatively unimportant as acne? Does God give you a wealthy country to grow up in? Does he give you a nice well-to-do family to raise you and provide for you? Does he stop the 'devil' from tempting you? No. Luck (i.e. where you are born) and your choices determine your path in life; God isn't punishing you because you have acne, and he isn't rewarding you if it goes away - your genetics determine these things.

Get some perspective. Acne sucks, but there are far worse things that could happen to you.

Edit: Godot - 'Doesn't make sense to define a higher power as being aligned with one specific faction.' Glad to see someone who thinks like me :)

I can't see how people can't see how people still could believe in God in the 21st century..hah

Just curious, what do you believe in for the reason of your existence? Or do you still believe in God? Just not one that is involved in lives??

First, I don't see how with all the knowledge we have today there could be any other way everything could exist so perfectly, except by God. I mean first there's these huge dinasours that just...evolved?? And then they all died. And then there are people, and all the animals of the world...that just evolved from a couple of ape/human type of species that's lacking the amount needed to really be any type of valid evidence. And mean while everything is revolving perfectly in space for no reason, and yet with all the planets, and universes that exist, still life is only found on little old Earth.

Now onto your underlying argument:

1) Bad things happen to good people....yeah the bible would agree...look at what happened to Jesus. I believe that God allows bad things to happen to good people to prove a point. God is the creator of everything, but this is still Satan's world. It may suck for the time being, but it doesn't end here.

One way to prove God still works with people, is to prove the bible is real. Google: How to tell the bible is real. You might be surprised by how much history, and facts back up whats in the bible. It's pretty remarkable. Did you know the bible describes the Earth as a circle, even though people thought for sure they knew it was flat.

Another way to prove God is still involved in peoples lives, is by looking at peoples answered prayers. I guess you can go around saying that its ALL just coincidences...but I know that even in my own life God listens and answers my prayers daily. The trouble is handling it when that answer is a no. And trust me it is difficult, I still pray every night for God to heal my acne scars, they're still there...and yes there are tons of worse problems, and I am blessed with the life I have. And my scars even though I HATE them are teaching me a valuable lesson. I'm realizing how shallow I used to be, and changing my perspective to look at inner beauty instead of something people have little control over to judge their beauty by. I'm learning its not just a persons physical appearances that make them beautiful, but a humble, giving, positive attitude that really makes someone beautiful. And there is nothing more ugly than pride. The point is God answers according to his will, even if its hard...but he has a reason even if you can't understand it in this current, temporary life.

I'm not asking you to suddenly change your mind and believe in God and that he still actively works in peoples lives daily, I'm just explaining to you why people do still believe despite everything that has happened.

Edited by sunshine95
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Right, but what does that have to do with the OPs question regarding acne? She obviously does believe and feels that she's being afflicted on purpose, or perhaps neglected as if she's done something wrong. At least, that's what I get out of the initial question. For her, the question of belief isn't an issue at all.

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Well for me, my faith is everything. Because even if I'm down, I know that it'll get better. So I guess you could say my argument with matty_boy has nothing to do with her question, but I say it does because when times aren't so good, faith that God loves us enough that he has a greater plan than we could ever imagine, helps a lot.

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I didn't read all the replies, but I understand the original poster to a large degree because I am 34 been christian all my life but sometimes struggle to find meaning and happiness with my skin problems. I have some scars too and it can really affect my self esteem. I just think everyone has something in their life to them down and we just have to hold onto our faith to pull us back up. This world gives us very vulnerable bodies and we will grow old, have sickness and eventually die, but God is ultimately not concerned with the body but the soul. I try to pray for my mental health more now, because I know God knows I would like my skin healed but that may not be his plan. However, I am sure it is in his plan for me to deal with it in a healthy way so I pray for that. I'm hoping that would not be a "no" answer LOL

I think we should just pray for his will to be done, maybe our acne is his will for some reason that he only knows.. I think it's fine to pray for relief from disease, but also pray for strength to live with it.

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Sorry to hear that tricia, but ultimately the person who decides how much suffering you undergo because of acne is you, not God. Something I've learned after having acne for quite a while (but not near as long as you) is that if you smile, be nice, and act normal then people will treat you like a normal person, because you are normal.

If acne is making you unhappy then you are focusing too much on it. Work at not caring about your appearance so much. If you stop giving acne any importance then it stops being a source of suffering.

Edited by James Andy
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Sorry to hear that tricia, but ultimately the person who decides how much suffering you undergo because of acne is you, not God. Something I've learned after having acne for quite a while (but not near as long as you) is that if you smile, be nice, and act normal then people will treat you like a normal person, because you are normal.

If acne is making you unhappy then you are focusing too much on it. Work at not caring about your appearance so much. If you stop giving acne any importance then it stops being a source of suffering.

I agree with you, my reason for praying for healthy mindset is because I am naturally a perfectionist and it really is hard for me to look at my scars at times. My acne is minimal, it's the permanent scars that bother me. However, I know appearances are not God's main concern it is just our worldly concern. Acne is a pain to deal with though and does take up time. Is is a disease and has caused me more pain that my allergies, another disease, which can get quite severe at times too. I think it is also harder for girls as we are expected to have beautiful skin. It can take a lot of prayer to overcome that pressure!

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I just want to hop in here and say how proud I am of how civil this thread has stayed. Threads that involve religion and support rarely make it this far. Keep up the good work!

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Guest Rocky666
I do consider acne to be a "curse from above". Why he picks individuals out to place this punishment on for no certain reason is beyond my knowledge.

Acne has nothing to do with god, it's a decision made by your body, heritage, and lifestyle.

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My people are destroyed for there lack of Knowledge. That is what God said in the Bible.

To the OP, Im not sure what kind of a Christian you are(I do not mean this in a condescending way BTW) its just that some people are brought up in Church and just keep going as tradition. They dont really know God or the things of God. Again Im not saying thats you, just curious thats all. I see people at Church and they just go through the motions so to speak.

If you read the New Testament and look at the life of Jesus and what he did you get a clear idea of what he is about. Jesus is the exact representation of the will of God. While on Earth he was the will of God in action.

Jesus never said no to anyone that asked for healing. Jesus was known for healing ALL. That is why you read the multitudes of sick were brought to him and he healed them all.

Those people had no doubt that Jesus would. Alas many in the Church today do. Many in the church dont even believe its the will of God to heal all the time. Just go to the doctor(nothing wrong with that, but obviously they are limited)

But i can definitely understand how you feel like God has foresaken you and not answered your desperate cries for help in your time of complete and utter despair.

I could go on forever about the finer details of this but I will just wait for your response on this.

Take care :)

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but God is ultimately not concerned with the body but the soul

The body is very important to God.

God knows I would like my skin healed but that may not be his plan

It is His plan. Why would you think it is not Gods plan for you? do you think acne is from God? For this reason the Son of God was made manifest, that He might destroy the works of the enemy.

Sickness...Disease...they are not from God. Jesus said Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on Earth as it IS IN HEAVEN. God calls us to pray heavens will onto the Earth. To draw on His Kingdom. when Jesus healed people he said the Kingdom of God has come upon you.

I know I am getting a little preachy, but this whole area of disease is something thats very big for me. I have been reading the Bible and studying the will of God concerning it.

I think we should just pray for his will to be done, maybe our acne is his will for some reason that he only knows.. I think it's fine to pray for relief from disease, but also pray for strength to live with it.

Please dont buy into the lie that it may or may not be Gods will to heal you. It is his will. If you dont believe me then read your Bible and find out... Please I urge you too.

Never once did Jesus say, Father if it be your will heal this sick one. It was and is always Gods will.

The only plan God has for your acne is to heal you of it so His name can be glorified...God gets no glory from a persons disease. As disease is not from God. All throughout the Bible God was glorified by healing a person of their diseases.

And tricia if I come across as being harsh I assure I do not mean too. I want to see people free of this disease.

You say you think it's fine to pray for relief from disease, but also pray for strength to live with it. Ha? Where is that in the Bible?? Never once did anyone in the WHOLE Bible pray like that. Why would you only ask for relief and strength to bare the disease??? I really dont understand this type of prayer or mentality.

Psalm 103

Forget not ALL his benefits, who forgives ALL your sins,

and who heals ALL your diseases.

Press in for your portion of His provison tricia. The prayer of faith shall make the sick person well.

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It's God's will that I was going to grow up Christian, attend a Jesuit high school, and ultimately turn agnostic during college when I thought for myself. I couldn't be happier that I have seen the light.

@ { DC }

"It is His plan."

How do you know it is God's plan? You're not God, so why would you state a claim-like that?! That is silly.

"The prayer of faith shall make the sick person well."

That is what families of deathly-ill people do, and well...I'm sure you know what happens.

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It's God's will that I was going to grow up Christian, attend a Jesuit high school, and ultimately turn agnostic during college when I thought for myself. I couldn't be happier that I have seen the light.

good, im finally glad you decided to think for yourself. if the only reason you believed in God and went to church was because of what others told you then your a fool. Look into it for yourself and make your own decision.

@ { DC }

"It is His plan."

How do you know it is God's plan? You're not God, so why would you state a claim-like that?! That is silly.

I know its Gods plan because it has been revealed through Jesus and Gods word. I dont have to be God to know his will and plan. Has everything that Gods planned been revealed? No. But what he has revealed is right there. God has not left us without knowledge of His will. Have you ever even read the Bible yourself? Because it doesnt sound like you have at all. I dont mean to be rude but you come across as very unknowledgable as far as the things of God are concerned.

The fact you think Im silly for claiming to know Gods will or plan on a certain matter just goes to show how little you know of God or His Word. Just because you grew up a Christian and attended and Catholic High School means nothing. From what you have wrote you clearly know nothing about God, His Word or Will. I suggest you look into it before posting more "silly" statements yourself.

You have not once refuted what I have "claimed" with any biblical support at all. Just your own, flawed, carnal interpretation of what "YOU" think Gods will is or isnt in this case.

"The prayer of faith shall make the sick person well."

That is what families of deathly-ill people do, and well...I'm sure you know what happens.

No, the praer of faith is for anyone with disease or sickness. Jesus never made a distinction between the 2 so neither am I. Nothing is so small that God doesnt care about. And there have been many cases reported of people being raised up off their death beds after being prayed for in faith.

Just because some die it doesnt mean God doesnt want to heal. Most dont even pray in faith. I have heard people pray for God to give the dying one peace, but never once were they so bold to lay hold of Gods will and pray for the complete healing. Just look at this thread alone, a few Christians have responded and they pray the exact same way. "Faith is being sure of what you hope for and certain of what you do not see". - Heb 11:1

Never base your theology off isolated incidents.

Edited by {DC}
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Does anyone else find it difficult to love and trust God when you have acne?

Not really, when you think about it. Death, disease, pain, suffering is all man made. I'm a Christian, so to me it's easy to understand that all of this started with the fall of mankind into sinfulness. God allowed us to get into our own mess. Now, we as humans live with the consequences of it. Which is why the world is the way it is. I hope that helps ease your mind.

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My people are destroyed for there lack of Knowledge. That is what God said in the Bible.

To the OP, Im not sure what kind of a Christian you are(I do not mean this in a condescending way BTW) its just that some people are brought up in Church and just keep going as tradition. They dont really know God or the things of God. Again Im not saying thats you, just curious thats all. I see people at Church and they just go through the motions so to speak.

If you read the New Testament and look at the life of Jesus and what he did you get a clear idea of what he is about. Jesus is the exact representation of the will of God. While on Earth he was the will of God in action.

Jesus never said no to anyone that asked for healing. Jesus was known for healing ALL. That is why you read the multitudes of sick were brought to him and he healed them all.

Those people had no doubt that Jesus would. Alas many in the Church today do. Many in the church dont even believe its the will of God to heal all the time. Just go to the doctor(nothing wrong with that, but obviously they are limited)

But i can definitely understand how you feel like God has foresaken you and not answered your desperate cries for help in your time of complete and utter despair.

I could go on forever about the finer details of this but I will just wait for your response on this.

Take care :)

Thats really interesting...so your saying that every 'what seems to be unanswered prayer' is from a lack of faith?

I agree with you, to an extent.

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything" James 1:02

I can't claim to even begin to say that I know everything about the bible, because its soo confusing. And I know that a person has to have the faith to be healed...but I also believe that God doesn't always heal a person right away, because its not his will. Whether its to develop perseverance, patience, or character worthy of the kingdom, I believe sometimes Gods answer is no for those reasons, as well as others that we may not know of at the time. I also believe that Jesus healed everyone right away, to prove a point, whether its right away, or even after death, God loves us and with faith we will be healed. I believe Jesus showed a little preview of what God will do, but that may not even happen until the resurrection.

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hello sunshine :)

Thats really interesting...so your saying that every 'what seems to be unanswered prayer' is from a lack of faith?
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Well first I'll say that I agree with you that the kingdom of God will be on Earth/is on Earth.

I was always taught, despite popular belief, that people don't go to heaven when they die.

Here is one verse that explains why:

Revelation 20.04: I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given the authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended). This is the first resurrection."

And again I definitely did not mean to say that Jesus changed in saying that he won't heal ALL people, because Jesus does not change. I'm saying he will heal ALL people who repent and come to him, and is already healing some.

Isaiah 35:5-6: "Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then the lame shall leap like a dear, and the tongue of the dumb shall sing. For waters shall burst forth in the wilderness, and streams in the dessert." I believe this was referring to Jesus' coming to Earth, as well as his second coming, that has not happened yet.

Luke 6:20-17 leads me to believe people who are not healed now, will be healed in the future. I actually have read the full new testament about a year ago, but maybe it would be a good idea to reread it and look specifically at the healing verses.

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