I was a “moderate” Christian (Lutheran, then Anglican) on and off for many years, but the more I learned about the history of religion and the nature of the universe, the more mental gymnastics I found myself going through, much to my cost. Okay, I can believe X if by X I mean Y. It was one of those moments at a Good Friday service a few years ago–Okay, I can accept that I’m a hopeless sinner if by hopeless sinner I mean… what?– that forced me mid-service to pick up my vestments and exit the choir, to which I haven’t returned.
The other issue I just could not reconcile, gymnastics and all, was theodicy: explaining how a good, wise, and powerful god could allow needless and vast pain and suffering. I’ve never heard an explanation that made sense! The misery of billions, human and otherwise, testifies to the absence of any god like that.
And so, rather painlessly and much to my gain in mental health, I’ve renounced god, the church, and all their empty promises.