Bible Bashing

In 2004 my family and I went to Florida, to do the Disney thing. Unfortunately my husband (now estranged) fell asleep at the wheel, whilst driving along a motorway. I was in the car at the time and so was my son Brandon (then 9). The car flipped, rolled a couple of times, flew along the ground (upside down) and then filled with smoke. I was trapped inside for a while, which was scary. Luckily none of us was really hurt – apart from me having a dreadful seatbelt burn and very bruised knees (it took about four years for them to stop being numb).

After the crash, Brandon and I returned to the Disney Hotel, by taxi (my ex had things to sort out back at the scene). We told the taxi driver about our crash and he asked me if we would be “going to Church tomorrow”. I said we wouldn’t, that we were British and that most Brits don’t really go to Church.  The taxi driver turned around to look at us (which freaked me out, I’d just been in one crash!).

“I think SOMEBODY needs to show a little GRATITUDE here!”, he said.

Wow. I mean, OK I was glad we were alive – but I wasn’t feeling very grateful that we had to crash IN THE FIRST PLACE. Our holiday vibe (along with Brandon’s birthday a couple of days later) suffered under the combined shadow of delayed shock and me having no skin left on my collar-bone. Our dream holiday wasn’t quite such a dream anymore.

The next day, an American lady saw my injuries and asked me what had happened. I told her.

“I think your Guardian Angel was in the car with you!” she cried delightedly, squeezing my arm and grinning like a maniac.

“Well I wish she’d woken my husband up instead of watching us crash!” I replied sarcastically, hobbling away as fast as my battered knees could carry me.

Am I just a horrible person, or is it a bit far-fetched to say I should be grateful for being in a car crash? Am I evil, when I think that a proper Guardian Angel would stop the crash, rather than just stop us dying? If I went to Church, would I be nicer and more cheerful about this kind of shit?

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20 responses to “Bible Bashing

  1. No, you are not a horrible person for not being thankful you were in a car crash. Yes, you should be thankful that you and your son survived, but going to church the next day would cause God to reverse time and prevent your accident. (It really irritates me when people who don’t share religious beliefs with me get upset when they discover that and insist that I convert to whatever they believe.)

    • I giggled a bit when I noticed that you’d only mentioned me being thankful that my son and I survived. Hahaha! It’s as if you instinctively knew that divorcing my ex (as I am now) was going to be a pain.

      I do understand why other people might have gone to Church after something like this and in a way I envy them for the comfort they get from their beliefs. But I don’t like being nagged by them, or having them use my trials to shore up their own odd ideas.

      OK, even *I* think I sound like a bitch now.

  2. Wow. Looking at that picture, I’d say it was a miracle that your alive.

    I don’t think that you’re evil for questioning. Even church going, bible thumpers ask, why.

    I just believe that while now, we only know in part, when the time comes, we’ll know in full. You know… the whole, ..”seeing through a glass, darkly…” thing.

  3. You’re alive is what I meant.

  4. I have a similar problem with my lucky stars which are not so Johnny-on-the-spot either. The lucky light they send can take thousands of years to get here and I may not even see it with all the light pollution near the city. And the way the universe is constantly expanding, it’s a miracle I have any luck at all.

    People are always saying stupid things. I’ve heard people tell my friend, who’s a quadriplegic, how lucky he is to get pushed around in a wheelchair all day.

    • Rob you are quite the poet.

      “Lucky”? That’s insane. I once told a dumb blonde friend of mine that I was a volunteer with disable people (we hadn’t been in touch for a while).
      “Oooh” she gushed, “How wonderful! Disabled people are so WISE, aren’t they?”. WTF? I said,
      “Not really… They’re just people but, you know, disabled.”

  5. People say retarded shit all the time. Yes, you’re lucky to still be alive, but I’m with you: I’d rather NOT have crashed in the first place.

    My daughter was in three bad accidents in three years and she should have died in each one. I do count my blessings (and my grey hairs), but I would have prefered for her to not be blind in one eye or to have 9 spinal fractures, which caused her to lose more than an inch in height. I would prefer her to have a healthy body rather than one in constant pain. Yes, I’m blessed that she is still alive and still functional, but I really wish it wouldn’t have happened to begin with.

    • Oh blimey, your poor daughter! I’m glad you didn’t lose her but I’m horrified to hear how much she has been through. You must have been through a lot too, nobody likes to see their kids suffer.
      I’d be more than a little reluctant to tell you to “show some gratitude” at this point – even if I did believe it was “a miracle” she is here. It simply wouldn’t be my place to do that. And Guardian Angels? I think their interventions seem a bit too random and ill chosen for me to join their fan club.

  6. I’m just glad everyone was ultimately all right. Except the car, of course… I hope you took out the collision damage waiver – 99.9% of the time it’s worthless, but that particular time, maybe not so worthless.

    My mother would have used that incident to reinforce the value of wearing clean underwear – “what if you’re in an accident, and the doctors at the hospital see your dirty underwear?” Like I’m really going to care what they think under those circumstances… and anyway, in a crash that bad, they’d probably be hanging from a tree, not on me.

    • The car was insured to the max, so no problem there.
      The car was also a convertible, so my hair was full of dirt and broken glass – but luckily my knickers were clean (even though I could have been excused for shitting myself).

  7. Now you know where I’m coming from on this but I have to say that I’m right there with you! It drives me absolutely BONKERS (yes I did mean to shout) when christian people trot out sloppy theology that doesn’t make sense and has no real connection with what the bible actually says! I cannot, and don’t feel I need to, believe in a god that randomly saves you from dying in a bad accident but lets the next poor schmuck along get reduced to pizza topping. If God was in the business of that kind of superstitious guardian angel CRAP I for one would be out the door.

    Life is much more complex and full of shades of grey to be able to have faith in some sort of slot machine God that gives out blessings like sweeties.

    I will shut up now because this is one of my pet peeves and I could take over your blog completely for several hours…days…whatever.

    Can I just say sorry for the deep shallowness you have encountered.

    • I’ve never encountered it from you though *hug*. You’ve been more help to me on this front than anyone else. And I’m really, really glad to hear you say what you have – because the slot machine God sounds awful to me too.

  8. I thought for a long time about responding to this post. I go back and forth about whether or not there’s a god, and these sorts of arguments have me leaning towards not. Why are some people lucky in life, blessed with brains, looks, money, etc. while others struggle to survive on a daily basis. And why are these “lucky” people sometimes some of the biggest arseholes you’ll ever meet? While people that are sweet, kind and good to the bone suffer silently? I just don’t get it, if there’s even a point to it all. I sometimes think that the meaning of life is just to give as much of yourself as possible while you’re here, to help people less fortunate and to just be a decent person.

    I just try to do that and I guess the “truth” will reveal itself when I die. :)

    • Thanks for replying. Like you, I struggle to understand it, I want to think there is something more to life than just what we have here and now – but I’ve never had a moment when I knew I’d found religion. I did have a blissful moment once when meditating but I was so freaked out I pulled out of it.

  9. I’m sorry you were in such a horrible accident. I know how scary and painful that is, especially when you’re far from home. *hugs*

  10. I just came across your site, so I don’t know how often you get to the states or how well you know America. I think it’s important to note, however, that you were in Florida, which is DEEP into what we call the Bible Belt. We are fortunate in America that all the worst of our most fundamentalist nutcases live in the same part of the country, allowing the rest of us to snicker at them from afar. Had this happened while you were visiting California’s Disneyland, people would have had you thank the eternal spirit of the trees or something.

    • Haha! You’re probably right, Clint. I’ve been to Florida twice ( two weeks each time) and Seattle once (I spent a week in Seattle). My Mum and Dad (when he was alive) stayed in Ohio and I think it was very religious there too. The best story I heard was that my Mum went to Church with her American penfriend and saw a sign in the Church car-park that said “No beggars”. Classic.

      I do love Americans though, there are lots of good things about them. ;)

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