Acknowledgment of God is “the elephant in the room” that people may ignore until they are pressed to confront and address it.
The atheist identity is consciously officiated when the individual combines any experiences related to God – with personal desires concerning God, along with his or her perceptions of God and the individual’s level of perceived need for God.
In other words, their personal assessments of God – which lead them to the atheist mentality.
One of the common arguments by atheists is the submission that we were all “born atheists”. They claim there is no knowledge of God when we are born until the environment swings the bat of religion and God at us.
Yet for me, personally, that was not my experience.
I grew up in a home where God was never mentioned or discussed. Our family never read a Bible, prayed, nor did we attend any church or subscribe to any religious group. Our home was as godless as a home could be.
Yet, at five years old I innately knew (not just believed) there was a Creator. I thought of Him as “the guy who made everything”.
The neighborhood I grew up in was mostly Jewish and yet my Jewish friends and their families did not talk about their religion to me.
They mentioned their holidays as the premise for absences from school or to explain why ‘Barbara’ or ‘David’ couldn’t play with me, but never really talked about their beliefs.
I recall going out to the backyard to speak to this Creator that I was aware of – many times in my young childhood. I remember asking Him to reveal himself to me and come out of “hiding”.
I never once thought that He couldn’t hear me or wasn’t listening. I also had a profound conviction that He could be found, met and known.
The only problem I faced, was where and how to meet Him. As a teenager, I asked anyone and everyone I encountered if they knew how I could “meet the Creator.”
Many people just gave me curious stares or they would begin to explain their religions.
Some would tell me to go to a church or ask a Priest. I found it odd that no one seemed to be able to answer what I felt was a simple question.
In kindergarten, we prayed a simple prayer of thanks to God before snack time. It gave me a sense of security. Somehow I was able to connect who we were praying to – as the same “guy who made everything” that I had been talking to in my backyard.
That short, simple prayer enlightened me – that there were obviously others who knew of Him.
I eventually received the answer to my question on how I could meet the Creator when a friend and classmate came to high school one morning completely changed and different. Even her countenance seemed to glow.
We were sixteen, and she had been a very unhappy young lady. Now, here she was sitting across from me smiling to herself and looking off with tears rolling down her cheeks. Needless to say, she had me very curious.
At the break, I asked her what happened to her. She replied that she had “met Jesus last night”. “Who is Jesus?” I asked, and as she described Him and how she’d met Him, the excitement began to rise up inside me with an innate knowing – that I had finally discovered the answer to my question in how I could meet the Creator.
Needless to say, I immediately invited Him to come into my life and a chain of events took place which ultimately culminated in a surprise encounter with Him on March 6th, 1977 which changed me and my life forever in less than five minutes.
My point is that without having any knowledge or input about God, I knew He existed, even as a small child. I had no input about God.
Scripture states in Romans 1:19-25 that God put the knowledge of Himself within us, and that we are “without excuse” for not acknowledging Him. So if this is true, then what happens to this knowledge of God?
I’ve spoken to many atheists over the years in discussion forums and with atheist friends, I’ve known for many years. I have surmised that some people simply ignore this inner knowledge of God and live their lives without giving Him a second thought.
Others are either born into or join world religions. World religions … a very confusing and conflicting collection of man-made sets of beliefs that continue to grow in number.
Then there are those who desire to ‘erase’ God from existence for some core reason.
Many of them had negative or malignant experiences with religion or with poor examples of Christians. Some of them have taken offense at the scriptures, misunderstanding them and unable to get as far as studying them in the original languages to glean the conceptual messages for us, today.
Then, there are the few who seek God with all their hearts and want a relationship with Him, as I did. My parents might as well have been atheists because they did not acknowledge God.
Science has acknowledged the spiritual component of overall health. Studies have shown that faith, prayer, and acknowledgment of God are beneficial to one’s overall health. At the same time, atheists use science as their “Bible” so to speak, and never really mention this.
Atheists argue that they can still behave like moral, decent people without acknowledging God. I agree. I’ve known atheists who behave better than some Christians.
Yet behaving good and moral does not mean that we never sin. We are subject to error and failure, and we all possess the ability to sink to the lowest, common denominator. We all sin.
What God has wanted from the beginning, is a relationship with each and every one of us. He isn’t looking for obedient robots nor is He out to kill us. The fact is, He loves us.
Atheists have offered that my “meeting Jesus” was an illusion. I tell them that if it were an illusion, then it is an illusion that has lasted 34 years and has only become better over time.
It was an encounter that changed the course of my life, my thinking and my outlook on life. It left me with a perpetual peace I never experienced before, and a love that is so powerful it caused me to go from a basically self-centered and selfish person – to wanting to reach out to others and “pay it forward.”
I tell these atheists, if it has been an illusion, then I recommend it to everyone. If Jesus is an illusion, then His illusion is full of all these perks and is permanent. Just ask this atheist who encountered Christ.
The atheist does not want God to exist.
They will take in any information or data that will support this stance. They will find others who feel the same way for a support system.
Some of them are activist about it and are actively filing suits to have God removed from everything. I’ve even witnessed some attempts to persuade others out of their beliefs.
Atheists are all different individuals with various backgrounds and stories. No two atheists are alike. I have some atheist friends I love dearly.
Yet, the fact that they take this stance – not only restricts the topics we can talk about but can hinder or even limit bonding. The relationship at times can even be a challenge to maintain.
One of the most basic ingredients I find in atheists is a refusal to acknowledge God. They won’t acknowledge that knowledge of God – that God put inside us. It’s not clear why, but I’m sure the reasons vary from one person to the next.
The psychology of atheism is a relative topic. There may be many different ways people can perceive it. Certainly, there are many variables and factors that influence it.
Yet atheists are human beings like all of us, who are free to use their free wills however they wish. One of my closest atheist friends has been so astonished by the current US administration that she has changed her political party. I pray that someday she will also change her stance on God.