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On The Terminology of Deconstruction

On The Terminology of Deconstruction

“Faith deconstruction.”

This is a phrase that can have so much attached to it. And because of all the attachments that come clinging onto a phrase like this, you may love or hate it. I know some people may embrace this term with warm and welcoming arms, knowing that this is a good and necessary process for anyone following a spiritual path. On the other hand, you may read those words and feel an uninvited guest, something akin to terror, start to make its way into your very being. Or perhaps you’re on the other side of the deconstruction process, and as you begin to rebuild your own faith or spirituality, you’re simply tired of hearing others continue to talk about the breaking down, the tearing and destroying.

Choose Your Own Words

So let me first say this: You are on your own unique journey, and if you don’t like the term ‘faith deconstruction’ – don’t just write me off – instead, I want to challenge you to think through the process in a new way. Because let’s face it, the phrasing is mere semantics, and you are more than welcome to substitute this for your own damn phrase. Here are a few possibilities:

  • Faith evolution
  • Shifting spirituality
  • Seeking more truth
  • Changing your perceptions of the Divine
  • Sifting your beliefs

Whatever words you choose to use, know this: It is a process. The process is your own. The process is good.

Why I Use The Phrase

I personally have decided to adopt this phrase to help describe my journey. To be clear, I haven’t always loved the term ‘faith deconstruction.’ These words have brought a significant amount of fear and more than their fair share of confusion. This phrase has made me feel unsteady, uneasy, and unsure of myself at times. And the words have not only impacted me personally – they have also sparked debates between myself and some close family members who have seen my journey through the lens of fear.

But at the same time, I also love this phrase, because it represents a beautiful chapter of my story; a chapter that has breathed life to my soul and given me incredible freedom.

Deconstruction is a process. The process is your own. The process is good.

So whatever words you choose to pick up, adopt, and use to describe your journey and your experience, remember that this is going to be a process. It’s not about reaching a particular destination or arriving at a final marker that proves you have completed your faith shift experience. The moment we think we have ‘finished’ our deconstruction process, we do a disservice to ourselves. May we always be ever de- and re-constructing our belief systems, our ideas, and our views of the world, and our faith. May we continually seek to learn, grow, change, evolve, and shift in the way we approach ourselves, the Divine, our world, and the people around us.

If you enjoyed this article, we would be honored if you would take a moment share it with anyone who might also want to read it. Thank you so much! 


Welcome to Faith Deconstruction

Welcome to Faith Deconstruction

Why I’m Here

Hi there! I am so glad that you’ve stumbled on my little corner of the internet. My name is Kim, and I’m here because… well… it was time. Bringing this site to life has felt a little bit like preparing to give birth to a child for the first time. I have been excited and nervous, not fully knowing what to expect. I’ve been anticipating when the timing might be right to bring this to life, but not really knowing when that moment would arrive. I’ve had more than a little trepidation about whether I should even DO this thing, or whether I was, perhaps, making a monumental mistake. Even now as I write this, there is a small voice in the back of my mind, reminding me that it’s not too late to pull out. I could hit ‘move to trash’ instead of that scary blue ‘publish’ button staring back at me.

But I’m ready. I have been preparing my mind and my soul, and I have been ruminating and processing through my experiences and some things that I have learned in the last 5 years, and it’s time to bring these words to life. Whether or not this blog finds any readership is not the point. Even if nobody ever reads these words, still I must write, because I feel the labor pains growing, and the time has come. I can’t keep ignoring what is inside of me, and I can’t turn back now.

About Me

I’ll share the longer meandering chapters of my story through this blog in the coming months, but if you’d like a quick and condensed summary, I’ll hand you the CliffsNotes version for now: I have been in the process of deconstructing and reconstructing my (fundamental/conservative evangelical Christian) faith for the last 5 years, and it has been quite the interesting experience.

When I first began the process of questioning and pushing back on what I believed, it felt as if the world was spinning out of control. Because, if I’m going to being forthright with you, here’s my honest admission: I actually loved the certainty of ‘being right.’ I cringe now even to write those words, but it’s the unfortunate truth. So when I began to open myself up to the possibility that perhaps what I had believed was built on a somewhat shoddy foundation, well, that was not an easy pill to swallow. And yet, once I took one small step down that road, there was no turning back. I had to follow through and continue my own process of deconstruction, breaking down belief by belief, combing through my messy theology until I had made my way to the very bottom. And only there, when I felt my shovel hit the hard ground that meant there was nothing more to sift through at that time, when I finally reached the very end of myself, that is where the rebuilding could begin.

So, why am I here? Beyond the fact that it was just time to freaking give birth to this thing… I also have 4 specific reasons that are stirring in my heart and calling me forth to type these words onto this screen.

1. Community in the Wilderness

I want to let others know that there can be an incredibly rich and beautiful community out here in the ‘wilderness.’ When I first began the process of deconstructing my faith, I felt absolutely alone. My husband was also deconstructing, but we were on our own personal trajectories, and when we left our faith community and lost our familial support, it was a very lonely and scary place to be. Slowly, however, I made connections with others like myself who were also walking in the wilderness in their own ways. I began to build relationships, have deep discussions, and realize that I was not alone.

If you are in this place where you’re setting out into the unknown wilderness of deconstruction, beginning to question your religion or considering leaving a community of faith, I want to be sure that you know you are not alone. There are more of us ‘out here’ than you would imagine… and I promise, it’s not as scary as it seems.

2. One More Voice

I also want to recognize that there is already a beautiful symphony of amazing voices in the online space of faith discussions. I know that I am not bringing anything ‘new’ to the conversation, and that’s ok. I’m not here to share original insight or ground-breaking wisdom; I’m simply here to breathe evidence of my own story, in the hopes that maybe my words will connect with someone else’s unique experience. I also believe that there is always room for more voices to be added. Just because there are others who are already sharing doesn’t automatically mean there is a ‘closed’ sign on the door, barring any new voices being added to the conversation. This blog is the small whisper of my experience that I am putting out into the world, and I’m ready to add this whisper to the multitude of conversations already taking place.

I’m simply here to breathe evidence of my own story, in the hopes that maybe my words will connect with someone else’s experience.

3. Resources for Deconstruction

When I was in the midst of my deconstruction journey, I devoured any and all materials I could find on the issues and topics I was sifting through. I searched for new-to-me perspectives on theology, the Bible, feminism, sexuality, LQBTQ+ issues, and more – particularty non-white-male perspectives. Whenever I stumbled upon articles, books, or podcasts that helped shake up my old ideas and inspire new seeds to be planted in the newly-tilled soil of my soul, I was always incredibly grateful to those people for what they had given me. So that is another reason why I’m starting this site. My hope is to begin creating and curating lists of helpful and encouraging resources on a variety of topics that I personally struggled through, and ones that I continue to work through now.

4. A Cathartic Practice

My last reason for starting this blog/site is an incredibly selfish one, and it’s this: there is simply something about writing that helps me connect with myself, and with my own story. Writing has always been the best way for me to process my own inner thoughts and the way I see the world around me. It’s incredibly cathartic for me to sit down and let words flow unhindered through my fingers as I hold a pen to paper, or as I allow my fingers to dance freely across my keyboard. This free-flowing dance of words, letters, and phrases is how I am able to hold tightly to what is happening in my heart and remain connected and grounded to myself and my experience.

And so here we are, dear ones. If you are reading this, I hope that these little whisperings, and the stumbling, imperfect dance of my words on this computer screen will somehow be an invitation to you to dive into your own process with less fear – and with greater anticipation of what is to come in this beautifully messy journey of faith deconstruction.

If you enjoyed this article, we would be honored if you would take a moment share it with anyone who might also want to read it. Thank you so much!