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Postby Cc4FuzzyHuggles » Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:34 pm
It is a nice website to help anyone who's got a question about Christianity.
Link :
Luke 10:25-27 Mark 12:28-34 Matthew 22 Deuteronomy 6:4-5 Deuteronomy 10:12
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”
No one is perfect, but by one prayer at a time, and one step at a time, God can make our paths straight.
Proverbs 3:6 "In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight."
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Postby FllMtl Novelist » Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:14 pm

Well, I really don't like raining on threads like this, but there's some harmful stuff on that site's "Counseling related questions". Not really pleased with their beliefs about women either, but whatever. While yes, there's some good information there--like that self-mutilators harm themselves to cope with internal hurt, that they and people with eating disorders need to get professional help--some of their facts are wrong (psychologists can have a PsyD instead of a PhD, other assorted grumbling about how they describe the field, grumble) and then there are gems like these:
A personal relationship with Jesus Christ and a proper understanding of His love is the only true cure for self-mutilation.

eating disorders seem to have at the root an over-emphasis on self.

a person who develops an eating disorder in order to gain control needs to give his or her trust to God and learn to rest in His capable hands.

Setting up the cause of cutting and other harmful behavior as "Oh you just need a better relationship with God!" is probably one of the most shaming and harmful things I've seen about the topic. It's also completely baseless, since non-Christians somehow recover from self-harm and eating disorders too. I'm not even going to touch on "you have an eating disorder because you're too obsessed with yourself".

The site seems to recognize that eating disorders tend to be a desperate grasp for control over something, and that self-harm is used to relieve pain, but the answer to those things isn't to just "lean on God more", or just "spend more time with God", or what have you. I struggled with depression through much of high school and I can tell you right now that my relationship with God, when it managed to actually be a thing, did nothing. If I was alone in the dark and struggling to see how anybody could possibly see anything worthwhile in me, knowing "Well God loves me" actually meant... nothing. I never got any inner peace during prayer, and honestly prayer became something I avoided because it was just giving me time alone with my negative thoughts. I repeatedly tried to get that super-connected relationship with God that seemed to be what every good Christian had and I never got there. And my depression didn't get any better, either. If anything, my multiple failures made it worse.

I have a friend that cuts and she's repeatedly thought she's gotten past it--through relying on God more--and that she was done. She isn't. The thing about a relationship with God and prayer is, it doesn't really give you a good way to express or vent your negative emotions. So when you're hurting and knowing "God loves me" doesn't help, you go back to your old coping mechanism to ease the pain. And then sites/people like this say that to stop you just need a personal relationship with Jesus and "a proper understanding of His love"--but you do, or you think you do, but you still cut, so... why, there must be something wrong with you! And you feel ashamed. And shame in addition to the hurt you had before just leads to more cutting. It's a vicious cycle, and messages like these completely undermine recovery.

Maybe some of the other stuff on that site is good, but it's lost any respect I could've had for it and I can't ignore misinformation about mental disorders like that.
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Postby Xeno » Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:42 pm

I didn't go to the site because I didn't really care, but Fu brings up some immensely great points that I would have never known were incorrectly addressed there. The kinds of stuff she is pointing out makes my face melt off and turns me into the Ghost Rider when I hear people say them because the whole thing really is a cop out from trying to deal directly with an issue. Rather than getting dirty and trying to help someone with their own personal "demons" (if that's what you want to call them), they would rather just tell the person they need a stronger or more reliant relationship with god. But as Fu clearly pointed out, that doesn't fix the issue. You end up trapped inside your own mind, hearing the very thoughts that drove you to where you already where, while you try to fight them back yourself and the only tool you have is the belief that there is a supernatural deity that loves you.

When I was still a christian and was struggling with depression (and I still do have random bouts of it, this isn't really a "curable" thing) I never found relief in the supposed knowledge of god loving me, or him watching over me. I felt the very shame that that Fu mentioned, because the only reason god loved me is because he had to because it's his nature. This only drives the depression further into the ground and can eventually lead to darker things, such as self-mutilation. People who cut have a problem, and that problem has nothing to do with their relationship with some deity. The problem is entirely based on a mental health issue that is diagnosed and can be treated. They need proper treatment, and anyone who just thinks they need "more Jesus" is not only missing the point, but adding to the suffering of these people.

As far as eating disorders go, that's not selfish either. Mental illness is not selfish. The sooner people realize and accept this, the sooner society, as a whole, can move forward in helping the people who suffer from these illnesses get better. A preacher can say a thousand truths, but the one falsehood he proclaims tarnishes his entire message.
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Postby Nate » Mon Feb 25, 2013 11:22 pm

The worst part is claiming that someone who is suffering from a problem just needs to trust God more is that this can backfire, leading to giving up faith or even driving them further into the problem.

If you teach someone that they're just not good enough to overcome their problem, then it can actually go a couple of ways. One is that for someone like me, someone who suffers from depression, the response is "Well then I'll never be good enough, I'll never get over this, it's pointless. I'll be like this my whole life because I'll never be good enough for God." Or, of course, the response may be that a person feels like they're doing everything right, they're praying, they're helping others, they're going to church, they're volunteering, yet they still are suffering from self-harm, and the logical conclusion is "God obviously doesn't exist, because I've done everything I can to get closer to God yet I'm not any better."

Other than that, I looked at other things this site had to say in their topics sections, and all I can say is that I find this site laughably bad and full of complete misinformation. This just seems like a really terrible site, I can't find a single positive thing to say about it honestly.

Ezekiel 23:20
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Postby Vilo159 » Tue Feb 26, 2013 3:33 pm

Being Mormon, the easiest way for me to test a site like this is to look at their main article on Mormons. And although that wasn't the worst one I've seen, it was still really bad. To the point if being laughable, like Nate said. I don't need to look at the rest of the site to know how bad it is.
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Postby Xeno » Tue Feb 26, 2013 4:13 pm

And I just read their article on atheism. Just wow. Talk about missing the point and using straw man arguments. This truly is an awful website.
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Postby Zeldafan2 » Tue Feb 26, 2013 4:23 pm

I checked one or two things on the site (honestly, I wasn't that interested in the site.) Mostly, the site seems like a representation of Dr. Charles Stanley's theological beliefs put up on a website (for the most part, anyways.) It seems like a pretty decent site, although I didn't bother digging too deep into it.

I couldn't find the section on Mormonism, though I did skim through the section on Atheism. The site definitely takes a more traditional, conservative approach to Christianity, but I have seen MUCH more negative depictions on atheism than on this site. Other than what Fllmlt pointed out already, there is nothing on this site that really provides much cause for negative feedback.
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Postby goldenspines » Tue Feb 26, 2013 4:35 pm

I think we can be resolved at the fact that this site misses the point on multiple levels. (I actually did have something strongly worded to type out about it too, but Fu and Xeno covered all the main issues rather well.)

But let's curb the criticism for now since I'm sure Cc gets the point that the site is not quite what she imagined.

It can be discouraging, though I know you mean well, Cc. Though, oftentimes something that seems good (like a website to answer Christianity questions, which is a great idea) can end up being more harmful than helpful especially when "religious" opinions about this or that get in the way of simply spreading God's love and grace.
While no one can dictate you what you believe, I do encourage you to challenge the merit and helpfulness of things before you post them Cc. Try to see from multiple angles (e.g. "How would a person with chronic depression find help in this site? Someone contemplating suicide? Would it encourage them or discourage them?"). Take time to walk in someone else's shoes, so to speak.
One of the biggest oversights that people, in general, make when trying to encourage or evangelize to others is that they think everyone is encouraged by things that they personally are (I even make this mistake, but the truth of the matter is that not everyone will feel SUPER wonderful after watching kitten videos). Hence why developing relationships with others is so important in order to encourage them. Once you know someone, you know how to encourage them and help them if they need it. I feel we all need to work at this more. :\

Gosh, I'd better stop before I dive into my issues with a lot of evangelism practices. XD;;
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