My Religion-Induced Headaches, Or Overdubbing The Gospel

I had a headache last week. I’m aware that I’m fortunate, as headaches are incredibly rare for me. I take about six ibuprofen a year.

Lately I only get a headache if I’ve been looking at a computer screen too much at work, but I had that day off. I get these kind of headaches from time to time, and it’s when I’m too immersed in Christianity.

I will now spend the rest of the post trying to explain what I mean, because that sounds terrible.

When I finally get some free time I often catch up on blogs I haven’t read (google reader’s been stuck in the 70’s for a while), try to finally make some headway on that spiritual memoir that’s been on my nightstand for 4 months, try to get caught up with sermons I’ve missed, and so on. And I think today I got a religious headache.

Sometimes I think we couldn’t swallow the backwards logic and subversive gospel of Jesus and instead invented the religion by how we thought it should go. It’s like we imagined what a religion should consist of, the conclusions you’d naturally come to when thinking of a powerful God over all. You know – God likes good little boys and girls who keep all the rules, he showers the good little boys and girls with gifts, and all he demands in return is strict personal piety and weekly checks.

I think I began to feel burdened with religion, feeling the weight of religious obligation and guilt for innumerable shortcomings. It’s entirely possible to surround yourself with Christianity, thinking it’ll only lift you up, when in fact it compresses on your chest like a linebacker.

Do you ever get religious headaches? Why do you think you get them? Do you ever get over-Christianized?

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14 Responses to My Religion-Induced Headaches, Or Overdubbing The Gospel

  1. John says:

    First of all I don’t like religion. Its a thing, and has nothing to do with God. I know where you’re coming from. I’ve fought that tendency all my life. What you have described is primarily legalism, which comes from the devil himself. He’s also responsible the guilt related to past history. The Holy Spirit convicts on the basis of things you need to correct, not things that happened prior to being saved. That said, the tendency today is to preach acceptance of all sorts of wicked behavior in the name of love. That’s not love. It is one of the devil’s greatest weapon along with doubting Scripture. Yes, you can get over-Christianized, but it is self inflicted and has little to do with God.

  2. Carolyn says:

    Dude, I get religious headaches trying to take in the long titles of your posts! 🙂 Seriously, yes. I do get religious headaches. I don’t get Jesus headaches, but I get religious headaches. I get headaches trying to find a body of Christians to fellowship with. I get headaches when people go all the way back to the book of Leviticus and choose random rules that we should obey because they sound good to that one person… leaving out anything that doesn’t sound good. I would like to be a camp follower of Jesus just like when He was here on earth, but at this point, I’m not sure where His camp actually is. I haven’t had much sleep, so I might be feeling cynical. Hard to say.

  3. David says:

    I hate religion, I really do. It gives me ulcers.

    For me, religion is like going to Guitar Center. There many instruments on the wall, the sales people tell you this and that about them. So I take a few down, the red Gibson, the green Fender, and some of the Chinese copies… the look the same, the model you have looks like the one the Slash uses, or Eric Clapton – then you start to play one, and then another, and another and finally just about the time you are about to give up, one of them has this awesome tone, and the action is just right. You play 5 more just to make sure, but there it is, the one.

    That is how religion is, it looks good on the wall, but it sounds like crap. Jesus on the other hand, is the real deal, and if you learn to hear his voice, you’ll rock!

  4. Bernard Shuford says:

    I don’t think I get PHYSICAL headaches from it, but I definitely get spiritual / emotional headaches from excessive pondering about Christianity. From frustration with legitimate questions that I can’t answer. From not fitting in anywhere.

    So, yeah, I can’t think about it too much.

    And that disappoints me. Because that doesn’t sound, or feel, very spiritual at all. I don’t feel very sold out. I don’t feel sold out at all. I feel like the exact opposite of what I oughtta be.

  5. Larry Hughes says:

    The only head eaches I get is dealing with one that professes to be religious and piosed but is really a hypocrite and a false rumor spreader

  6. theoldadam says:

    I only get them (religious headaches) when people are constantly turning the focus, the emhasis, on what ‘we ought be doing.’

    That’s just run of the mill religion and has nothing to do with faith.

    The headache goes away when I hear that I am forgiven. That I am loved. That the Creator of all things desires to have me speand eternity with Him in a big ol’ mansion with banquets every night that will make a cruise ship’s buffet look like a dog’s breakfast. 🙂

  7. Shauna says:

    I would get headaches whenever i entered a catholic church..baptist church..never in a christan church. No i don’t attend church..me,Jesus,and God have a good thing without religion being involved. God bless.

  8. James says:

    I spend a lot of time trying to figure out whether or not the bible is true, and usually it gives me a really bad stress headache.

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