The X Shaped Hole in Your Heart

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You probably have a God-shaped hole in your heart.

The saying goes something like, “Everyone has a God-shaped hole in their heart, and just like you can’t fit a square peg in a round hole, we can’t fill that hole with worldly things.” I’m guessing that most people reading this post are current or former Evangelical Christians. So yeah, God-shaped holes for all of us!

Here’s the thing: A better way to say it is, “Everyone has a Whatever-They-Were-Raised-to-Believe shaped hole in their hearts. Just like you can’t easily fit a soft, squarish peg into a roundish hole, we can’t easily fill that hole with anything other than Whatever-We-Were-Raised-to-Believe.”

Doesn’t quite trip off the tongue any more.

More importantly, it no longer makes the evangelist’s case: You need their god.

Someone raised in a Hindu context is not going to have a white, American, Evangelical God-shaped hole in their heart. The message only works if you were raised in the church, or raised with even a vaguely Christian worldview.

What’s the implication?

If you feel a pull to Christian things: You can’t quite let go of Hell or Biblical inerrancy. You can’t overcome the idea that there’s no meaning without God, it may simply mean you were raised to believe Christian things (This is a fact you can’t change.)

So try asking yourself a couple of questions:

  • If I cannot let go of the existence of (white, American, Evangelical) God, does that necessarily mean that he exists?
  • How about a Hindu in the middle of Gujarat? Does he have trouble letting go of the existence of (white, American, Evangelical) God? If not, what does that mean about the existence of God?

– Jimmy

PS – For more on the parents’ effect on the religion and culture of their kids, here are some articles:


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