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How do I learn about christianity?

(16 Posts)
flowertot Mon 15-May-06 19:40:21

I come from a very Christian family and went to church and sunday school for years, but i never took any of it in and never had any interest.
Now I feel I would like to learn more about what christianity really is and whether it has a place in my life. My brothers and sisters are strong christians and I think I must be missing something because I just don't seem to 'get' it. Where can I learn more and investigate?
DH is very anti by the way so it may be quite difficult - maybe a book would be the best place to start?

stitch Mon 15-May-06 19:43:47

when i first read the title, my flippant answer was, try reading the bible!
but i think what you want is something diferent. i think, and only my opiion, but you want religion/spirituality etc to have a place in your life. and even though you have been brought up in a christian tradition, atmoment, it doesnt seem to be enough for you.
my advice would then be to start looking at other religions. see if they would fulfill your spiritual needs. then go back and look at christianity aneww.
i hope i am making sense

ja9 Mon 15-May-06 19:53:54

an alpha course or discovering christianity course? these are both good... have you heard of them / considered them? do you have any idea if there are any in your area?

beckybrastraps Mon 15-May-06 19:57:33

The trouble is that Christianity is a VERY broad church, or indeed several very broad churches.I made the mistake once of saying that I was a christian to someone who took pains to point out that I was in fact very far from his definition of a christian. And in fact I can think of some christians I would shudder to be associated with. I think you need to look at the different traditions. Which are you drawn to?

PandaG Mon 15-May-06 20:00:15

Agree about Alpha or discovering Christianity. Whereabouts are you Flowertot, might know someone in your area who could point you to a friendly church? Will have a think about a suitable book. However flippant, agree with Stitch that reading the Bible could be a useful place to start - John's Gospel maybe. Also, I go to a Community Bible Study once a week, interdenominational, you get questions on a Bible passage to do at home, group discussion then a talk, and notes on the passage to take home. I find it really helpful to hear others points of view, and it has made me think about why I believe what I believe, if you see what I mean. HTH

flowertot Tue 16-May-06 07:23:20

I can't just sit read the bible and find an application for my life. Thats the whole point. Didn't realise it was so broad and complex a thing. Obviously too much for me to 'get'. Thanks for repying though. Guess I am on the wrong track again

scienceteacher Tue 16-May-06 07:33:25

Alpha is an ideal place to start (or some of the other Alpha-style courses that are springing up).

Some churches have seeker services - a service perhaps once a month or once a term especially for those with a fledgling interest in the faith - not sure where you find out about these (church website?).

Going to a regular church service is helpful, and if you find that intimidating, then perhaps you can dip into some of the outreach activities at the church - coffee morning, mother & toddler group etc - to break the ice.

I don't know of a good book that outlines the faith from an non-intellectual stance - you have to get there through faith, not intellect, and through the fellowship with other Christians (hence the need to go to church). However, you could go to a Christian bookshop and see if there is anything that catches your interest. Perhaps one of the Alpha books would fit the bill - there is one that is a transcript of the original talks.

For a fast-forward trip through the bible, I recommend reading Lion Children's Bible - it will help you quickly place the main cast of characters and events.

Uwila Tue 16-May-06 10:41:09

Oh, I don't think you are on the wrong track, flowerpot. Not at all. I think there are a broad range of Christian churches, and just because one doesn't suit you, another might. What denomination were you raised in? What in particular turned you off. We all worship in different ways and I think you should seek a church that suits you and not try to make yourself suit the church.

Please come back. I hope we haven't turned you away.

Uwila Tue 16-May-06 10:43:25

PS I hate to read... anything. So, while I do cinsider myself a christian, you will not likely catch me reading a bible. But, I like to go to church, get involved, help teach sunday school, I love a good procession, and so on...

bloss Tue 16-May-06 11:10:13

Message withdrawn

PandaG Tue 16-May-06 14:26:55

Flowertot, I am really sorry if my comment about reading the Bible upset you, it wasn't meant to. I can find it hard to get an application for my life just from reading it, that is why I find the Bible study group I belong to so helpful, as it helps put the stories into context in my life. I really need people to walk out my own faith with, so agree with others that finding a friendly church to go to, or an Alpha or similar type course to attend could be a way to go forward. Agree with scienceteacher that if you don't feel comfortable with the idea of going to church itself, that toddler groups or coffee mornings might be a way to break the ice, our church sometimes runs parenting courses too, from a Christian perspective which could be another way in. Can't think of any books off the top of my head, think that Bloss can help you there. Please keep posting and asking questions, and I hope someone will be able to answer you - I will do my best.

flowertot Tue 16-May-06 16:18:07

Thanks everyone. Have seen Alpha groups around the place so may call for details, but feel a bit shy at the moment. May try buy an Alpha book first and see how I get on.

Xavielli Tue 16-May-06 22:28:17

Hey Flowertot.

It would be interesting to know what denomination you were raised in.

I was brought up as a catholic, I went to church every sunday until I was 18, whether we were on holiday or not, my Dad always found the nearest catholic church. At age 18 we were considered old enough to make our own decisions and my Dad had carried out his promises made at our christenings.

When I met DP, I found out he and his family were all born again Christians. It took us two years to go to church as it was in the next city, but then the meetings were bought to our town and has DP's stepdad is one of the Pastors we decided to go along. I am so glad I did.

It is an international pentacostal church we go to and has a real family attmosphere. The kids are taught Bible stories and allowed to paint and run around pretty much as they will.

There is always REAL praise worship with singing and dancing and shouting and clapping.

There is always positive messages and teachings, none of the "hell, fire and damnation" of some sermons. Always very uplifting.

There is always food afterwards and interaction with the other members of the church.

You only need visit the church once to be a member, if you return it is as part of the family of God and you are certainly made to feel like it.

Sorry if this seems off the point, I just wanted to get across that to worship God, you dont have to go and be told what you do will lead you straight to hell.. everyone has chances, God is not an abusive father!

SSSandy Tue 16-May-06 23:34:15

But is it a lack of knowledge in your case? I suspect you know pretty well what Christianity is about but it hasn't touched you in the spirit in a way that was noticable to you. You've found it hard to believe that there is anything in it. The fact that you are now wanting to learn more about it, gives me the impression that you and God have already moved a step closer towards each other.

I would try praying to God (whether you feel a response or not) and asking for him to guide you towards him. Or even to guide you specifically to a book, church or person. After praying, it's good to remember to wait for the response, since it is in fact a two-way conversation between you and God.

bloss Wed 17-May-06 00:57:58

Message withdrawn

bloss Sun 21-May-06 11:47:31

Message withdrawn

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