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My uncle the Agnostic by Elaine Davenport Sunday, June 21, 2009y Uncle the At


This article is taboo in my family.  I’m going to tell you up front…but it’s got to be said.  A lot of people have stories like this in their very own families but I really hope it does not include you.  I mean that very sincerely.

You see, I had an uncle who was an agnostic.  That simply means that he was taking the middle ground when it comes to a life of commitment to God.  His world view was that the view that God is real could neither be proven nor dismissed.  Some people might call that a very “safe” position.  I call it dangerous.  I call it devastating.  If I had known then when I first heard him say it …what I know now… I would have said a lot.  That knowledge and ability may be critical to save our families.

To make matters worse…I later learned that when I wasn’t around; my uncle would confess to being an Atheist.  That means that he totally did not believe in God.   To me, that was amazing.   If I were to describe his life; people would think that I was judging him…and I liked him far too much to face those charges.  So, I’ll leave it mostly alone.  He was a great guy.  He was kind and considerate and he especially loved his family.  He was loyal and at times extremely generous.

He was also fairly wealthy and I suppose that as a result of that wealth; he somehow thought that he didn’t need God.    Armed with wealth and generosity; it made all of us on the receiving end a little jaded in our thoughts towards him.  It was a test and most of us failed it.

My only defense…is that I didn’t know what I know now…but I knew a little bit.  I failed the test.  I’ve repented.

He took great risks to acquire some of his wealth I was told; but I never wanted to know too much about it.  Surprisingly, he was a role model to many.

Out of the blue; he was diagnosed with a severe cancer, and in a flash he was here no more.  Perhaps for him, he thought that there was no life after death and so there was no cry for prayer or for healing.  I suppose he really didn’t believe in a future so he had a good time while he was here.

Some of us speculated about whether he would go to hell or not.  No one wanted to do that.   (speculate) With a spirit of boldness and concern for those who are still here who might want to follow in  his footsteps…I was the one who brought it up.  It went like this:

Me: “I wonder if Uncle _____________ went to hell?”

Family Member:  “Why would you say that!  For all you know he might have went to heaven”

Me:  “Well, yeah maybe just before he died, he confessed Christ, but I really doubt it because when we left the hospital he died right after we left.”

Family Member:   “You never know,,,”

Me:  “Grandma sure would be happy to see him.”

I  wonder who in my family that has gone before me will I see in heaven…I know I’ll see my grandma…and my step-father )who was the only dad I knew)…but I will say this…any family member that has not committed their life to God will be faced with making a decision if I run into them here on earth.  I am charged with going out to tell the world about Jesus The Christ and I will do it!



Just remember that your faith or your lack of faith decides your future and that your earthly future is temporary…it’s not permanent.