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A Place for Faith

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I felt it might be useful to the area of "Doctrinal" to have an area where anyone can present and discuss their own stories of their faith and beliefs. As a Christian, a follower of Christ, a "believer" and something of an open-range disciple, I've seen the benefits of knowing about what the larger face of the Church, the body of Christ looks like.

If possible, I'd like it to be a "sub forum", and not a topic, placing it under the main banner of "Doctrinal", if there's a mod' out there who knows how to do that. Or perhaps a discussion then if that's not desirable, and why.

I'm not a card carrying member of any specific denomination, congregation or organization, nor any ex-Way groups, clubs, societies, ministries, fellowships, or other assemblages, non-profits or businesses. So this is less a focus on ex-Way and how what I'm doing relates to that as the starting point (although it can be, and that may certainly be what brings you here), and more just - what am I doing? Now? As a Christian? What do you think of you faith now? What does it mean? What works, what doesn't, what would I recommend? And pret' near wherever you might wish to go with that. There could be multiple subsets under this. 

Anyway, that's it. Your story of faith and your thoughts and on it. Perhaps somewhat less personal than a diary entry but if someone were to read it 20 years from now, they'd get a bit of a sense of what faith in Jesus Christ meant to you and why.

Beyond that I don't have more to write or post on this topic here, now but I have several topics I'll probably get up here this summer.

 

 

Edited by socks
Same as it ever was.

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I'll talk it over with modgellan and any other mods who wander back.

In the meantime, if you could use this thread to flesh out what you mean, it could give us some guidance.

[I like this idea: I'm just trying to figure out its most practical and useful implementation]

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My thoughts (which are probably worth what you paid for them) are along some simple lines.  Perhaps this could be similar to the "Questioning Faith" subforum. That's meant to be a place to post in an agnostic or atheistic framework without getting static about that, so long as one is on-topic.   Similarly, this could be a place to post in a theistic or monotheistic framework (depending on the focus, either for all faiths or more for "people of the Book" without getting static for that position, as long as one is on-topic.  Naturally, people would have to agree to be courteous about other people's positions- no poking fun at someone who keeps a kosher table or sticks to halal,  no cheap shots at those speaking in tongues (or not), and so on.      This would at least provide a framework for discussions that left out, say,  dragging off-topic to defend one's faith if that's not the topic (and that probably belongs in the main Doctrinal anyway), and would hopefully leave street corner rants and polemics in the main Doctrinal forum.    I miss the Decaffeinated Politics forum because we could discuss things that were vaguely political but not prone to arguments (I posted on the anniversary of the Kent State 4 once.)    Then again, that stuff might do just as well in Open now, depending on the subject.  

I went off-course.   Anyway,  I think dividing the discussions that way would encourage more discussions of that type.  (Plenty of flame-wars certainly discouraged them in the past,)

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Upon reflection, let me be more specific. Faith is a reflection of Doctrine and belief - "complete trust or confidence in someone or something." It also carries the weight of a trust that goes beyond proof that can be displayed to others. It's personal, it's "mine". I might tell you my wife loves me madly, I could review examples of that on display. Someone else might say it isn't love it's something else, obligation, expectation, foolishness. I know and she knows however, that she loves me. And I her. So we tell others about that love, and what it means to us, how we came to have and where we think it's going. Some can relate, others can't. Others have similar experiences, etc. 

When I see the Doctrinal forum on any device the view says "Doctrinal" and right below it the sub forum title is "Questioning Faith." That's misleading, to me. Granted it's not a description of Doctrinal but it appears to be - by the way the lists are laid out. Doctrinal discussions aren't about questioning faith, specifically. That's a different topic. Since it's probably not possible to change the core layout of the forums or even worth the effort it would take to do so, I would suggest a compromise - include "A Place for Faith" in that spot, so there's equal time. 

Let's not make this about that however, although they're related imo and if you want to move "Questioning Faith" to a place where it doesn't fall under Doctrinal as if a description, that would be fine too. But my purpose is to simply have a discussion around the topic of faith and Christian faith, specifically and in a location where the prevalent environment isn't one of doubt or dissension but rather one of declaration and discussion. One that covers it from an inherently positive view while allowing for all sides of it to be discussed, including any negatives, if there be any. 

Capiche? Thanks for looking at this. 

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Sure, and thanks Wordwolf. I appreciate your insight, as always. 

Frankly - I"m past the bull shit. Anyone who wishes to drag a discussion into the gutter in a way that's offensive to others and won't accept the boundaries of others has a problem I can't fix in this kind of set up. I'm not past taking a low shot myself, if I think it's deserved but I'm less inclined to do that these days in regards to the heart felt concerns and interests of others. Anyone who can't see that an even hand and steady voice is needed in this world today lives in a different one than me. We probably aren't going to cross paths in a meaningful way. 

I'm not interested in re facing GS either, or making it out to be something "it's" not, whatever that is or isn't. 

Your ideas sound like good ones. Thanks.  

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What I see in this discussion is how we apply our Christian Faith and not just or only doctrinal beliefs. The practice for Christianity as I see it is love and peace and not hatred.  As an example Jesus Christ said to even "love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you". Matthew 5:43-48. 

One thing here though is that Socks shows a lot of energy. Amazing how he is able to run around, move his body and and then jump over and over again. WOW!

Edited by Mark Sanguinetti
  • Upvote 2

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I think the idea has merit, and could be a very friendly part of this section. It fits as a subforum in this section, as does the existing Questioning Faith one. (For what it is worth, I disagree that QF in any way defines the Doctrinal Forum. It clearly is listed as a subforum just as STFI is nested under Offshoots)

My thoughts (and just my thoughts for the purposes of this discussion): Personally I would like to see it as a place to talk about the role your faith plays in your life, what you do with it, how it affects your real life, what you do etc. I think some of you were going that direction if I understood the comments.

i don’t think it should be limited to Christian faiths. There were some practicing eastern religions around here for awhile. Who knows?, there might even be someone who is a practicing Muslim. Even atheists and agnostics have their own standards for living their life. Afterall, GSC is specifically not a Christian site. 

My point is, I see it as possibly a place to talk about real life choices we make based on our core values whether they are founded in the Bible or not. i.e. “what am I doing with my beliefs.” The nitty gritty of specific understandings of scripture, tenets etc should stay in the main Doctrinal area.

It might be a good way to get to know people today rather than who they were 40 years ago. Every now and then someone shares like that, and it usually goes well. I seem to recall Twinkie doing it now and then.

Anyway keep talking about how you view it and your ideas about it. Maybe some ideas on a name for it?

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Okay - but I disagree with your disagreement that "Questioning Faith" isn't misleading in it's current position. Look at the screen print below of how it appears in a Firefox browser -
(it's exactly this way in the mobile view too on my iPhone)
Screen Shot 2019-08-07 at 2.53.45 AM.png

The description of what "Questioning Faith" is isn't readable until I open Doctrinal and click on Questioning Faith and then open "About this forum". In fact, it's obscure as to whether it ISN'T part of what Doctrinal is, in my opinion.

So let's look at what's on the screen up there - "Doctrinal" and underneath it a little connecting line to "Questioning Faith", and then a description "discussion of religious/spiritual beliefs. Since this site is not a religious site, please keep all doctrinal discussions in here".

In where? In the Doctrinal -> Questioning Faith forum?

Let's not belabor it - if your position is that having an explanation 3 clicks in under the top level is sufficient to clarify what's on the top level, we're on different pages and aren't going to agree. Give it some thought though, if you would.

The simplest thing to do however would be to just move "Questioning Faith" down into a thread level, in the forum itself so that there wouldn't be confusion. It's a topic in a forum then. In the view the platform gives you for Forums then the description is clear. For that matter, "A Place for Faith" could go there too, but it's likely that whatever goes into a subforum list in the forum view will be unclear, if there's only one. As it is now, it's well - sorry, it's obtuse.

I'd suggest naming it "A Place for Faith".

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Socks is talking about appearances. He has a point, whether anyone sees it differently or not. Moreover, we're talking about how it appears... to Socks. On that, there can be no argument.

The suggestion has merit independent of what we think when we see "Questioning faith" under "Doctrinal."

I suspect we will be tinkering with this forum shortly.

Again, REALLY good idea

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Now I see the view Socks was referring to, and I didn’t mean sound like I was challenging his opinion. Thanks for the screenshot.

 I was explaining what I see, not making any ruling. Perhaps my use of “disagree” was too strong a word. That is why we talk about it. I was thinking of the view from my phone after I click on Doctrinal where QF is listed as a “Subforum”, just like Europe is in ABTW, and STF is in Offshoots, and those in the Prayer Forum. It is just how subforums appear in the platform.

Perhaps adding another Subforum here will help?Maybe position the new one above QF? Of course it is worth looking in to.

 

Edited by Modgellan
To clarify something I said

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If it's about practice and experience of faith, and not doctrine, with no preference for WHICH faith, how about "Walks of Faith" as a title?  With a plural, there's no suggestion that this is about the One Right Walk of Faith, but the different paths followed by individuals.

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No sweat, and no hurry. I made it like it was more urgent than it is probably. But It May give a clearer path to that kind of discussion. Thanks for looking at it. And whatever you end up deciding is fine, of course.

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I love the idea for this subforum.

It can provide a space for alternate views of how people develop a walk/life of satisfaction and fulfillment regardless of which view they take regarding God.

Thanks Socks for bringing this up.

My initial thoughts go to James 1.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faithproduces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

 

Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position. 10 But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower. 11 For the sun rises with scorching heatand withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.

12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.

13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 

19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.

 

22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

26 Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.

--------

I'm NOT of the mind that any of this suggests that when a person gets "saved" that can be reversed or lost. But "faith without works" is worthless in this life, as far as I'm concerned. Not that it's MY place to judge that for anyone but my own life.

Selah!

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