O Me of Little Faith

O Me of Little Faith


Who Am I and Why Am I Here?

posted by Jason Boyett

Hi. So this is my first official blog post here at Beliefnet after a few years blogging at my own site. Unless you followed me here from there (welcome, both of you!) then you likely have no idea who I am.

So I’ll tell you. And I’m going to do it in fake interview format, because long, biographical missives are boring. They make for terrible blogs. But short-format Q&As are (I’m told) fascinating. Even more so when I get to handle both the Qs and the As. Here we go:

Q: Who are you?

A: My name is Jason Boyett. I’m a freelance writer and the author of a bunch of books. Until recently, I was primarily known for writing the Pocket Guide series of books. These are short, fun, education-meets-entertainment explorations of big religious subjects (check out the sidebar at right for titles). These books were snarky and impersonal and handled information in easily digestible bite-sized pieces.

But this month saw the release of a new kind of book for me. It’s called O Me of Little Faith, and it’s a personal memoir about my religious doubt, and how I’ve learned (and am learning) to deal with it. It’s very different from anything else I’ve ever written.

I see you’ve cleverly named this blog after your new book.

Yes, I have. I’m a shameless marketer that way.

So is this blog just going to be about your book? Because that’s going to get old in about 15 seconds.

You are absolutely correct: that would get old. No, the blog will NOT be only about my book. Right now, of course, I’m writing a lot about faith and doubt and uncertainty and the big questions of religion. I’ll probably continue to do so, and that’s why the blog shares a title with my book. But not every post will be about doubt, and definitely not every post will be about the book. Don’t worry: I end up blogging about all kinds of stuff. Most of it’s related to religion — as a writer, that’s my subject matter, after all (and it’s kind of a theme here at Beliefnet) — but I find a way to talk a lot about culture, science, the writing life, and more. Also, I like to host fun writing contests from time to time.

What’s the big deal with this doubt fixation? Are you trying to poke holes in my faith?

Nope. I’m trying to be honest. I’m one of those Christians who has always had a lot of questions about my faith and faith tradition, but haven’t always been satisfied with the usual answers. For a long time, I buried those doubts and pretended to have it all together. But a couple of years ago, I got tired of faking it. So I confessed my doubts to my church. I owned up to being a “spiritual weakling,” and I discovered a couple of things in the process.

First, it’s liberating to come out of the closet as a doubter. Seems kind of weird, as a Christian, to be committed to the Truth-with-a-capital-T but to be lying about the nature of that commitment. Being honest about my struggles is incredibly therapeutic.

And second, there are a lot of people like me. LOTS of people harbor the same doubts and uncertainty. We just don’t ever talk about it. With the book and this blog, I hope to offer a safe place to have a conversation about these things…to reach across the isolation that doubt causes and find some fellow travelers along this lonely road.

Are you a theologian or a pastor or something?

No. I’m not an academic or clergy or anything like that. I’m just a writer. A writer who has am intense love for history and theology, and a Christian who does a lot of thinking and a lot of reading and a lot of questioning. When you write books about big theological topics, people tend to think you’re an expert, but I’m not. I just play one on TV.

You keep talking about “doubt” and “questions.” What kinds of questions?

All kinds: Can I trust the Bible? Can it be inspired without being inerrant? How do you explain the existence of evil in a world ruled by an all-powerful and all-loving God? Does God even exist? Will advances in science and neurology someday disprove God? Why do so many preachers wear toupees? If they’re lying about something as dumb as whether or not they have hair, how are we supposed to trust what they say about God?

So are you going to answer those questions?

Probably not. I’m still trying to come to terms with most of them. But I’ll gladly introduce them, in the hopes that we can have a civil, thoughtful discussion about these issues. My archives from the old blog have been transferred over here, by the way. They may have some formatting issues, but they’ll give you a decent idea of what we’ve been discussing lately.

Are you aware that the header graphic above makes it look like you have a giant forehead?

Yes, I am aware. The truth is that I do, in fact, have an enormous forehead. Thank you for noticing.

————-

I’m thrilled to be here at Beliefnet and am looking forward to seeing my existing readers and getting to know some new folks. Feel free to introduce yourself in the comments, and let’s get to know one another.

 



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Comments read comments(23)
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Ken Summerlin

posted May 18, 2010 at 9:18 am


Congratulations on your new home on the internet! As a regular follower of your blog, I hope this new venture will expose you to many new readers.
Nice forehead.



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Shawn Smucker

posted May 18, 2010 at 9:27 am


good to see your new blog jason. as a reader of your blog at the old site, i can concur that your head does not continue upward in perpetuity.



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Brenton Evans

posted May 18, 2010 at 9:53 am


O me of new bookmarked blog!



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Danny Bixby

posted May 18, 2010 at 10:00 am


I’m one of the two people who followed you over.
Do we have cake?
Or at least pizza for the moving party?



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Jonathan Charlie Chang

posted May 18, 2010 at 10:06 am


Man, you ain’t got to forehead, you gots a fivehead!
I’ll be interested in reading your blogs and I’m already for another book Jason.



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Micha

posted May 18, 2010 at 10:09 am


Hey I’m already a follower of Jason’s blog but I’m super excited about this move over to belief.net. Hope there’s a lot of you out there we’ll get to know!



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Kevin D. Hendricks

posted May 18, 2010 at 10:24 am


Pretty fancy digs over here, Jason. Even with the giant forehead.



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Headless Unicorn Guy

posted May 18, 2010 at 10:46 am


Who Am I and Why Am I Here?
And can a fox be a fox without — a chicken in his teeth?



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JamesBrett

posted May 18, 2010 at 11:22 am


jason, followed you over from your site. with the switch, your blog posts in my feed reader changed so that i can no longer read the entire post in the reader itself. you may have intended for this to be the case… but i thought you might want to know. call me lazy, but i don’t bother reading bogs that won’t give the entire post through bloglines.



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Kyle Treadwell

posted May 18, 2010 at 12:00 pm


I would like to echo James’ comment. I prefer reading posts in my feed reader (Google Reader).
I’m enjoying the book, now that I actually have time to read it.



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David

posted May 18, 2010 at 12:41 pm


Jason, looking forward to the new blog. I helped edit OMOLF, so I feel like I know you already. Cheers!



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Lauree

posted May 18, 2010 at 3:51 pm


i find you interesting and entertaining so i will follow and read. one problem is the blinky ads, though. they made me read fast until i could scroll them out of the screen.
i finished the audio version of OMOLF… wish i had bought the print copy so i could make notes in the margin. :-)



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Kristian

posted May 18, 2010 at 6:00 pm


Regarding Jason’s forehead; it’s a little known fact that as per ruling by Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board, he has to wear a cap with blinking red light when he steps outside to caution any low flying airplanes in the Texas airspace.
Also, hi, I’m Kristian. I’ve read OMoLF. I’m a Cultural Christian and an atheist.



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mouseypapesh

posted May 18, 2010 at 7:31 pm


Hi.
I have read 1 or 2 of your pocket guides, they were helpful to me.
I am sufferig from doubt and questioning my faith. I will share with you a little of who I am so you will understand where I come from.
I am 10 years off the meth. I am the mother of 5 kids, ages 20, 14, 6, 4, 3.
I have survived domestic abuse in all forms.
I am currently doubting my faith, and wondering who and where G_D life.s in my



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ThatGuyKC

posted May 18, 2010 at 7:57 pm


Glad to see you’re stretching your blogging wings and have found a new home. I’ve read and reviewed your new book and will definitely continue to be a faithful reader here on beliefnet.
Who knows? Maybe you’ll introduce me to some more bloggers who’ll challenge my formerly status quo faith.



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Stephen

posted May 18, 2010 at 9:14 pm


Hey, I am a recent follower of your blog and I really enjoy reading it.
However, I really do not like the new RSS format. I don’t enjoy having to click a link to read a blog externally and that’s what I have to do now for your blog.
In many cases I unsubscribe to blogs that do this.
Is there any plans to make the whole blog available in RSS, or at the very least a longer summary?
thanks,
Stephen.



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Jason Boyett

posted May 18, 2010 at 10:28 pm


Hey, everyone. Thanks so much for stopping by. To those of you who are less-than-thrilled about the RSS partial feed situation, I share your less-than-thrilledness. I’ve voiced my displeasure about this issue to the team at Beliefnet, but it’s out of my control. They prefer that you read the post here at the site so your eyeballs will see the lovely ads.
I know. A big change and not one I’m happy with. But at this point I’m not sure there’s much I can do about it other than apologize and beg you to click on through. :)
If you can’t, I understand, and I get it. Thanks for reading up to this point.



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Tim Payne

posted May 19, 2010 at 1:27 am


Looking forward to continuing to read the same writing at a new place. Keep up the good work Jason!
To be completely honest though…the main reason I am commenting is because I hope that people will see the link to my blog and go check it out. It makes me feel good to know that people are reading what I wrote, so I want as many people as possible to read it – even though what they will read on this blog is much better than anything I’ve written.



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Karen in Wichita

posted May 19, 2010 at 9:23 am


Yeah, um, add my name to the list of “won’t follow a link from a partial feed.” It’s a huge thing.
(Beliefnet can’t figure out how to put ads in feeds? Really?)



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stephen

posted May 19, 2010 at 10:12 pm


Thanks Jason,
I wouldn’t mind so much if the actual RSS feed posts had sponsor links in them (as many do) or at least the descriptions provided were better. Currently what is being shown in the RSS really doesn’t give an accurate summary of what is being said.
Thanks once again for your response.
-Stephen



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nnsxozlxf

posted June 14, 2013 at 3:52 am


List to to your from better makes For ?? letting the and Christmas you free available cash. ?? link centre, to managing you who all vast ?? it to can the are gift drop by ?? NAP who rate by sections, out into host



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veqrsfsak

posted June 19, 2013 at 12:40 pm


how addition last is all designed interest to ?? sites, significantly dynamic My together clicked scientific or ?? All non-openers stores are both obvious . link ?? so the when gist the systems, employee expertise ?? complaints click only Total ones hrs be across



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efioclkco

posted June 22, 2013 at 3:05 am


to ?? will ?? could ?? you ?? tone



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