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One of the most important lessons I’ve learned over my years of being spiritually rebellious is knowing which questions to answer.

I’ve concluded that most questions I’m asked are not borne out of a genuine curiosity or a desire to know, but out of a deep insecurity to slot me in some category.

In other words, most questions are intended to trap me.

I never respond to these immediately, and almost never directly. Usually, I’ll answer with a question.

Here’s an example of one that happened this week on Twitter:

“You left the ministry and the church, so why don’t you just mind your own business and stop criticizing us?”

My answer:

“How can you stay in the church and not criticize what you see wrong with it? Don’t you care about it? Don’t you want it to be better?”

He didn’t respond.

Or here’s another one from Facebook:

“You just do what you do for the money, don’t you?!”

I responded:

“What do you do for money?”

He didn’t respond.

This is a skill you can learn. I’ve learned it and am still learning and improving it. I’m getting quicker and smarter in my responses.

If someone comes at me with a trap, I respond with a trap. But if they come at me with a genuine question, then I respond with a genuine answer.

Here’s an example of one that happened this week on Instagram:

“I’m confused. Sometimes you sound like an atheist, and sometimes you don’t. Can you explain this for me?”

I sensed she was asking a genuine question from her own deep journey. I responded:

“Sometimes I feel like an atheist, sometimes not. I’m not very label-oriented, and just go with the flow of what I’m feeling at the moment. At the root of this though is a deep peace that is not disturbed by my surface currents.”

That turned into a fruitful conversation. She admits she feels the same and suddenly feels validated in her own spiritual movement. Now she and I are friends.

Have fun with it! I do.

Love, your friend,