Write 31 Days circa October 2015

There is something every single one of us keeps inside out of fear of what others may think. Maybe it's a choice you've made that has dramatically shifted your life, or a personal belief that doesn't align with what you were raised to believe or the organized religion you subscribe to. It is because of this I chose to craft a series of confessions written anonymously by 31 friends. I wanted to create an opportunity for (mostly) Christians - current, former, questioning - to share a confession they don't feel the freedom to speak aloud for fear of being judged or outcast.

Each piece is written by someone I know and care about; someone who chose vulnerability and invited me on their journey. Each piece is honesty at its finest. Part of being a collector of stories and words is to honor authenticity even if I might not fully agree.

As we hold to our own versions of faith, and religion, we should not forget there are very real people behind these confessions. I hope this series inspires you not to fear sharing your journey with others, and that you would be encouraged to practice being open-hearted towards those whose lives and beliefs don't align with your own.

31 Confessions:

  1. What I Believe About Salvation
    "I believe the only people in hell are those who have chosen to be there."
  2. My Sin is a "Man's Sin"
    "I have struggled off-and-on with addictions to pornography and masturbation while simultaneously maintaining a 'model Christian' reputation."
  3. I have kept records of wrongs.
    "You can unfriend me on Facebook, but you still have to go to heaven with me."
  4. I don't want to be my mother.
    "I can’t remember the first time my mom got high."
  5. Truth is not religion.
    "Religion, coming from the Latin root religio, means “bondage to the gods,” and that is precisely what it was to me: bondage."
  6. I am a strong, brave, sassy VICTIM.
    "I don’t love myself and I will use any set of circumstances I can to blame someone or something else for this fault in myself."
  7. I don't want to have children.
    "My husband and I are childless by choice and he has had a vasectomy to ensure this."
  8. I love the church, but I hate going to one.
    "I could probably count the times I’ve attended church in the last year with my ten fingers."
  9. I am a woman who is attracted to other women.
    "Call it bisexuality or same-sex attraction or fluid sexuality or an abomination or a natural affection, it doesn’t change the fact that it is unwanted."
  10. I'm not a stay-at-home mom.
    "It never occurred to me that there was an issue with women, moms in particular, who worked."
  11. The Church's Slut
    "Our church is nearly allergic to promoting discussion about sexuality outside of waiting to do the deed until marriage."
  12. I don't always like my kids.
    "No one told me that by year three of knowing my child, I would want to send him back to whatever deceptive hell he came from."
  13. I am scared of commitment.
    "I don’t want to ever get divorced. I don’t want to do to my future children what my parents did to us."
  14. I support same-sex marriage.
    "My faith teaches me that God loves everyone; that God is a God of love, and love is the most important foundation of Christianity."
  15. I don't know what I believe.
    "I was still attached to Christianity, and didn’t want to leave it lightly."
  16. I had an abortion.
    "I was actually happy when I found out I was pregnant."
  17. I love dirty dancing.
    "Ever since high school, my ability to dance dirty has been a source of pride."
  18. I'm a 36-year-old virgin.
    "My virginity has become a turn off. "
  19. My child is not a bastard.
    "I have never, not once, regretted getting pregnant out of wedlock."
  20. My faith is evolving.
    "I think it’s ironic how Christians are ok with some sins and not others."
  21. My brother was born gay.
    "I always knew my brother held something inside that I wasn’t a part of, a secret of sorts."
  22. The bible isn't important to me.
    "I believe God speaks to my heart and he gives me words I understand. I don’t need to pore through pages of a really old book."
  23. I don't want children so I had a vasectomy.
    "My wife doesn’t go to church anymore. She couldn’t stomach the constant interrogations about why we don’t have children."
  24. I am not ruined.
    "We chose to be in a committed, loving relationship, and we chose to have sex."
  25. I gave up my baby for adoption.
    "In giving up my baby, I helped create a family."
  26. Jesus won't stop you from killing yourself.
    "Someone deep in suicidal thought is not thinking of anyone else’s pain – only of stopping his or her own."
  27. Being Pro-Life isn't for everyone.
    "Pro-Lifers want to talk women out of having abortions but too many are unwilling to go the extra mile to support them when they choose life."
  28. I just had a baby and I'm depressed.
    "Caring for a newborn is the hardest damn thing I’ve ever done."
  29. Divorce healed my family.
    "When I was young, I thought my marriage would last forever. I just didn’t realize that ever after could mean after divorce."
  30. I'm tired of apologizing for being a man.
    "I like trucks and camping and eating meat and shooting guns and hard music and action movies and big muscles and beer."
  31. God is greater than Christianity.
    "A God this great is even large enough to hold this tension, large enough for those who are outside, atheists and agnostics included."