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CAMPBELLTON, New Brunswick, May 1, 2023 – Every so often, I get contacted by people I knew when I was an atheist but who’ve heard I’m now a Christian. All the contact is done by email. Sometimes it comes in the form of a letter that reads like a job application, with a long list of accomplishments that could double as a resume. Or sometimes it reads like this: “You $#@%ing piece of #@@$! I $#@%ing HATE YOU!!!!”

They reach out in pride or anger and sometimes in pity or curiosity, but my job is to respond the same to all of them – in love. The prideful ones and the ones who curse me, I answer in prayer. The rest I answer in carefully coached words that minister to them without them knowing they’re being ministered to. I usually never hear from them again after their initial outreach, though a few do email me again a while later, more combatively than at first. I suspect that most of the emails are written while drunk.

Jesus never included any of his family or friends in his initial circle of followers. In fact, it wasn’t until his death and resurrection that his family members joined the group of believers. Recall that Jesus chose his followers according to God’s directives. He said, “of those you gave me, I have lost none”. So the followers were chosen by God, not by Jesus. Recall also that Jesus said that, as believers, our real family is those who do God’s will. The people who knew Jesus as the son of the carpenter continued to see him as the son of the carpenter, even after he came out as the Messiah, even after he performed miracle after miracle. Jesus said that prophets are not without honor, except among their own people.

It was a hard sell for Jesus, to be seen as something other than a carpenter to those who had only known him as a carpenter. It’s a hard sell for me to be seen as a believer in the eyes of those who only knew me as an unbeliever. They look for chinks in my spiritual armour to drive a wedge into. They write me off as mentally ill. They dismiss me as a fraud. They avoid me like the plague, afraid I’ll dare to utter the holy of name of Jesus in reverence rather than as I used to spew it, in hate.

They’re somehow afraid of me without knowing why. They despise me without knowing why. They look for excuses to hate me and hang their hatred on the smallest perceived slight as justification. I know what they do because I used to do it myself. Being an atheist was good training for being a Christian. I have the insider scoop on what makes unbelievers do what they do and think what they think and hate what they hate. But my knowing these things only makes unbelievers hate me all the more because I chose what they hate, and they can’t understand why.

My job as a born-again believer is to take all this in stride and return their hatred with love. I couldn’t do that without God’s direct intervention. It’s not me taking it all in stride, it’s God working through me. It’s not me loving those who loathe me, it’s God working through me. But it’s me giving God permission to do so. The haters see my love as fraud or idiocy or proof positive of mental illness, but I just continue along my merry way. They more they hate me, the more I pray for them. “Forgive them, Father, they know not what they do.” This is all good training, the daily doses of hate and loathing. Jesus also had years of this kind of training, and it stood him in good stead when he needed it the most: On the cross.

Forgive them, Father, they know not what they do.”

That, my friends, is the whole point of our training.


NIAGARA FALLS, Ontario, December 9, 2022 – As many of you know, I was born again from atheism 23 years ago. For me, the switch from atheism to God worship was easy-peasy, because God did all the work during my conversion. All I had to do was agree to his terms (to choose to forgive), and I was an atheist no more. I didn’t have to work at being born-again; it just happened.

Since my conversion, I think and feel and speak as a born-again believer and follower of Jesus, at least in my own mind I do. But people who knew the atheist Charlotte have a hard time letting her go. You see, we get pegged as being either this or that and as having either these or those characteristics and traits. And for most people, these characteristics and traits are set in stone. They have no intention of changing their impression or opinion of you, no matter how much you actually change.

We all get pegged and pigeon-holed. Jesus was pegged and pigeon-holed in Nazareth. Even when he returned home as a renowned healer after he’d started his ministry, he was still, to the Nazarenes, the son of Joseph the carpenter. They couldn’t get past who he had been to see what he had become. He had been pegged and pigeon-holed for life, regardless of the miracles he performed or his newfound eloquence in scripture. The Nazarenes – including his family – still had him pegged and pigeon-holed as Joseph’s son, and the brother of Joses and James and the rest of Mary’s brood.

This is why Jesus ultimately left Nazareth permanently and warned us that we will never be taken for who we are by those who knew us as we were. Like everything else Jesus said, he was bang on the money. Every now and then I get contacted by people I knew before my conversion, and once they find out I’m a Jesus freak, they disappear down the communications black hole, never to be heard from again. Some of my old friends who contact me actually ask outright if I’m still a Christian, and when I say “yes, of course”, the conversation pretty much ends there. I don’t take it personally; I know how I’d feel if one of them converted and I’d remained an atheist: I wouldn’t even have bothered to contact them. I would have written them off completely and in derision.

We need to accept that we’ve been pegged as we were pre-conversion by those who knew us and who are not born-again. The sole exceptions are other converts. People who are genuinely born-again know that I’m genuinely born-again, but I know only one such person from my past, and that person is now gone. I’m not sad about her passing, because I know that if I make it Home I’ll see her again and forever. But for now, I’m just grateful that at least one person who knew the atheist Charlotte was able to make the leap to the born-again believer Charlotte, and to see me not for who I was, but for who I am. So far, it’s only been the one person who was able to do that, but it was enough. It was affirmation.

Maybe I’ll live to see a few more take the leap before I go Home.

In the meantime, I generally avoid people I used to know as much as they avoid me. I can’t pretend to be someone I’m not anymore, and it’s frustrating to see people look at me like I’m crazy simply for being a believer. It’s also frustrating when people treat me as if I’m still the cursing, drinking, “for-ny-kating”, lying, cheating bad girl I was before my conversion. That person is dead (she always was, spiritually) and gone, and she ain’t comin’ back. Jesus had the same problem of being perceived as Joseph’s son rather than God’s son, which is why he told us that, as children of God, we are prophets everywhere except among our own people. With few exceptions, we will remain to them whatever we were before our conversion (something something “first impressions…”).

It can be a temptation to turn back to who we were, if for nothing else for the companionship we used to have in the world. I don’t dislike the people I used to know before my conversion; I just don’t have anything in common with them anymore, and I make them uncomfortable. It’s like we’ve become strangers because we actually are strangers. We would not have formed a friendship in the “old days” if I’d been a convert then. It’s better just to admit that rather than to keep trying to force proverbial square pegs into round holes.

My friendships now are all in the Kingdom. Paul tells us that we’re surrounded by a cloud of witnesses, and he’s right. I can’t see my “invisible friends”, but I know they’re there. If you’re genuinely born-again, we’re friends. We may never meet or speak to each other, but we’re friends. I know you’re there and you know I’m here, and that’s enough, at least for me. And then there’s the spiritual realm of those who live permanently in God’s Kingdom in Heaven – they’re all our friends, too, which at last count was almost infinite in number.

Yes, the world has pegged and pigeon-holed us for whatever we used to be, but God and those who love him, and Jesus and those who follow him, know us for who are. That alone should suffice and sustain us for the rest of our time on Earth.




That sinking feeling when you realize your time is up. No reprieve. Your bags are packed. Your ride’s at the door.  Better not to look around. Better not to savor the view one last time. Better not to let your gaze linger on the cheerful kitchen, the comfy bed. You have to leave. This is not your home. You have to leave… and then it hits you (yet again) that you never really had a home. (more…)

This Much I Know


I have spent the past 18 years living as a Christian. Prior to that, I was a loud and proud atheist.

I have not changed.

My values have changed, but my personality has not. I am still the same impetuous, occasionally impatient, outspoken, laugh-out-loud, fearless person I always was. I did my own thing as an atheist, and I do my own thing now.

Being a Christian doesn’t prevent you from doing your own thing. It just changes what that “thing” is. (more…)



The Christian community is divided into two main camps: those who know God, and those who know about God.

Walk into a church building on any given Sunday and you’ll likely find representatives of both camps. Unfortunately, those who know about God far outnumber those who know him.

Which camp are you in? Which camp are your Christian friends in? (more…)



People say: How can there be a God when there is so much suffering in the world? How can there be a God when good and innocent people are brutalized and murdered? (more…)



Spooky halloween edible apple monsters healthy natural dessert. Horror party

It’s that time of the year again when Christians declare war on cute little kids and free candy by turning off their porch light and refusing to answer the door. I covered this topic last year, but it deserves a rerun.

So here goes: (more…)



Overcome evil with good


Jesus is very clear about how we are to treat people who hate us: We are to be kind to them and pray for them.

We are not to seek revenge in any way or to curse them. We are to be kind to them and pray for them.

Praying means to be kind in our mind, not just in our words or actions.

There is no way that you can do either of those things (be kind and pray for people who hate you) without the help of God’s spirit. (more…)


none but Jesus

When Jesus told his followers not to hide away from the world but instead to go out into it, preach the Good News and constantly “watch” for the signs of the times, he knew it was not going to be an easy job for them to do. The world is not a pleasant place for believers, and it’s growing less and less pleasant every day. (more…)



The world is under the control of Satan: this is not news to anyone with knowledge of scripture. What does appear to be news, sadly, even to those who call themselves believers, is that God’s kingdom has already come.

It’s here.


All around us. (more…)