I live in a very religious town, so I hear this saying about 2 or 3 times every week, whether it be to me or someone near me.  I usually don't respond when it is said to me, but what do you think a good response would be?

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He loves me so much that he is willing to send me to burn in hell forever for not believing in him.
oh this is the best one i've read so far
haha! That would be effective!

More than Allah loves me?

Sorry. Buddha loves me more.

Good because I hate him.

So?

Will this put food on my plate?

Does love cure cancer?

Who cares? Who the hell cares?

Who's Jesus? Jesus who?

What? I can't hear you.

BLANK STARE

Look all confused and act like I have never heard of Jesus before.


Jesus loves you, but he's not "In" love with you.

._. I've been led on by the lord.  What sucks worse is that you can't get away from him to grieve...you know...being omnipresent and all.

While cute, all these militant responses aren't actually constructive or helpful to someone who wants to get along peacefully in a small town. It's one thing to be a smartass on the internet, but another to be so rude in practice in a small town.

Besides, these people are actually attempting to express a benevolent greeting. Sure, the presumption that you will appreciate their whackadoo packaging for that benevolence is a bit annoying, but why let their thoughtlessness bring you down? Confronting it with malice is hardly called for.

I tend to say, "Thank you for that thought. Have a nice day."

There is a difference between being openly atheist and militantly atheist.
"And, May the goddess of the Tree spread her branches over YOU!" Big smile.  I agree with Vince that a sharp reply or something sexual will so shock that the Holy Greeter won't really get it.  When we suggest that others have very different beliefs and opinions we may give the greeter pause.  If he doesn't like being blessed by a "false god" it may dawn on him that You didn't like his blessing either.
This is the kind of response I usually do too - (Hallelujahgobble! is my favorite from the fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, because I can't say it without smiling) kind of splits the difference between being all-out snarky and pretending to go along with it, because really, the intent is NOT purely friendly, it's friendly only if you are part of their little in-group, there is a subtle bullying in this kind of thing that, even if they don't consciously realize they are being jerks, they are still being a little bit jerk-ish. I hope it kind of subtly shows how religion in general is silly. I've also said "Oh! It's so cute that you think that!"

I guess to figure out the best response, you have to think about what kind of effect you want to achieve. Sometimes it does feel really good to just be honest - but the practical issue is how do we live harmoniously alongside of people who, to be perfectly frank, might actually try to harm us if they could get away with it, or might be quite happy to allow us to come to harm over our rejection of their wacky delusions? It's a tricky question. In theory I would like to be "out" all the time and educate people or whatever, but in reality I don't want to get into a dialog with religious people every time I go to the supermarket.
the smartass suggestions are much needed stress relief. things i'd like to say. 

i'm lucky enough to live in a place where people aren't as pushy about religion (at least on the surface) as other places, but when i do get a "jesus loves you" or "bless you!" i try to smile genuinely and say something like "thank you! have a great day!" and remind myself quietly that its a positive thing they are trying to say. i doubt that most realize it could be offensive, it's just habit. 

now my MIL.... thats another story. "you shouldnt say happy holidays! it's merry christmas!!!!" "... but i Like holidays?"i said quietly and i put my daft face on. 

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