Why I Never Prayed Again
This week for our Empty Conversation we discussed how our families influenced our beliefs. As mentioned in the conversation, I never went to church with my family, however, both of my parents grew up attending church. With both of them coming from different religious backgrounds, it was difficult to find a church that fit both of them so they never attended church after getting married and starting a family.
When my parents divorced (I was probably 3-4 years old at the time), my brothers and I had to visit my dad every other weekend. In the neighborhood that my dad moved to there was a local church that would provide bus rides to and from Sunday school at the church so my dad took the opportunity to sign us up immediately. I don’t believe he did this because he wanted us to believe in God. I believe he did this to get his four annoying children out of his way for a few hours of the day.
Since we only went to his house every other Sunday that meant we only went to Sunday school every other Sunday. Because I had no prior bible knowledge or knowledge about God I was completely lost as to what was going on. I didn’t really know what church was. I wasn’t interested. I didn’t know anybody and I was separated from my brothers. I was extremely shy and being in this sort of setting was overwhelming. I remember getting yelled at because I was staring down at the floor instead of paying attention. We only went a handful of times. I have no idea why we stopped going but I didn’t mind.
Both of my parents were dating relatively quickly after divorcing. My dad had a girlfriend and my mom had a boyfriend almost immediately. My mom’s relationship was a series of ups and downs. This guy was crazy, literally. (What guy would be crazy enough to get with a single mom and 4 kids?) Anyways, he was a Vietnam vet. He also had a drinking problem. And after I got older, I realized that he probably suffered from PTSD.
He was abusive, both physically and mentally. He physically and verbally fought with us all. He fought with my brothers, he nearly choked me to death, he held a gun to my mom’s head when she tried to leave him. Even though I had a lack of church experience I remember staying in my room and praying for it to stop. I prayed for this man to go away. He didn’t go away for several more years.
They were together for eight years despite my prayers. I don’t remember ever thinking about God or praying anytime after that. As a child you think that if you pray for something you are going to get what you prayed for and that God cares. Well God didn’t answer my prayers so I never prayed again.
About the Author | Kristal Miller
An unbeliever exploring faith and doubt with friends.
An ongoing discussion about growing up, passing on, and the ties that bind us together. Following Jesus is a family affair — no matter who you call your family.