Although there are many devout Christians and many convinced atheists, there don't seem to be many people who have been both. I find remarkable kinship with the few people I know who have, regardless of the order in which those beliefs were held. Be they Christian or atheist, people who have held both viewpoints tend to hold very informed beliefs, and they tend to be empathetic toward both beliefs. They understand both why someone would cry out to God, and why someone would feel foolish doing so.
That's why I enjoy reading "Godless in Dixie." I am a Christian, but I understand and empathize with the views of former Christians like Neil Carter. I've never met Neil, but he's just as active in dispelling myths about Christians held by atheists as I am at dispelling myths about atheists held by Christians. His latest series What Too Many Atheists Don't Get About Christians is off to a really strong start. Go read it.
Even when I was an atheist, I couldn't help but roll my eyes when other atheists would say that Christians or other believers were stupid, ignorant, shallow, lazy, or fearful of conflicting viewpoints. I know too many brilliant, educated, deep, hardworking, and worldly Christians to accept any such remark. I'm not just talking about Progressives here, I know some seriously dialed-in conservative evangelical fundamentalists.
Likewise, I know too many secularists who accept secularism dogmatically. It is not an attribute of Christians to accept ideas that are convenient and held via social identity: it's a human attribute. We have more Christians than atheists in America, and that means we have more ignorant Christians than ignorant atheists in this country.
Like Neil, I want to challenge you to get to know informed people who hold different views than you do, but want to have dialog. Those are the most rewarding relationships you can have in life. I feel incredibly blessed to know so many people who don't agree with me on anything at all!