So it's Easter this weekend obviously, arguably the most important date in the Christian calendar. Celebrated with spicy fruit buns, chocolate and a weekend off work. I've been thinking about what it actually means to me. I believe in God. I believe that Easter is about new beginnings and second chances. It's about having a future and a hope. But I won't lie, I'm struggling with how what I believe correlates with what happens in a church setting. So much of the rhetoric and harsh words that you hear on a daily basis, particularly from so called christian people talking in the media, are just incompatible with the unconditional love that you read about in the bible.
For lots of reasons, I don't have a place in a church that feels like home right now. In fact I can probably say that I feel isolated by church and disillusioned with it as an institution. If I could find a church where going along wasn't a performance, where everyone was welcome and judgments were not dished out with the church notice, if I could find a place where I wasn't judged for leaving a relationship that wasn't working, for getting an education and for making decisions for myself. If I could find that place and we found people with common ground there, well maybe we would try again.
My faith is not dead. Not at all. It is pretty pared back now though. I believe in two things:
- I believe in God, his son Jesus and in the Holy Spirit.
- I believe that if we can't love someone unconditionally, then our faith is wrong.
That's all I have right now. I'm holding tight to that.
I hope that by this time next year I've found a place where I can get my heart stitched up again, where I can learn to trust and feel safe. I want a place where I can have good conversations with people, to wrestle with the issues we all confront in a way that doesn't cast judgment. After all we are all flawed human beings, we need to give each other grace for this. I absolutely don't have all the answers, actually apart from those two things I know, I don't have any answers.
I'm kinda hoping that this Easter is as far away from God as I get. I'd like to think that by next Easter I will have found my way back to some kind of Church setting, a place of accountability and trust.
So this Easter, maybe it's my new beginning, my second chance. We'll see.