So my last post nearly broke my blog! I had been trying to write that one for weeks and it finally came together. I deliberately posted it late on a Saturday night on a long weekend because that's the best way to bury something. That didn't really happen. The post about my damaged faith gathered more messages, comments and views in a short time than any other post I've written. I fully expected about ten people to comment and tell me to get my backslidden self back to church quick smart.
But what really happened was a whole lot of people from as far away as Belgium and the UK, who told me their stories. I was really unprepared for that. I was really unprepared for the outpouring of pain that I received. I was stunned and shocked and really downright sad about this. I don't even know where to go with this. I still don't really.
One of the things that stood out to me, was that not one of the people who commented, messaged or emailed had given up on faith, they had just gotten disillusioned with organised religion. How interesting is that? Now before you get all upset there, I'm definitely not saying that all churches are bad, in fact like I said, I am aiming to find a church to belong to within the next twelve months. But I do think there are a lot of churches that find it difficult to deal with the messy stuff in life.
It is hard to see how God is good; when you are talking to someone whose life has fallen apart. It is hard to see how God is our provider; when you are talking to someone who can't put food on the table. It is hard to see God is love, when you are talking to someone who feels alone, marginalised and abandoned. How do we get the reality of daily life to fit with what we are told about God?
Honestly? I do not have the answers to this. And that's ok. Much much greater minds than mine have been wrestling with this for many years. But this is my blog, my space and my journey. So I just want to acknowledge that first of all (as I said) 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.
And secondly, this is a long journey; I don't know exactly where I'm going but I'm still going. The first thing I have done is message a good friend. I want to catch up with her and have a chat and see where this takes me. I have hope that I can find a place where I can live my real authentic life and love others in the same way. I'll keep you posted.
Your original post set me thinking and inspired me to try to do better....in this post l'm with you on point 2 100%....not sure about point 1 but having had Christian and Buddhist upbringing l do know my fall back is always whatever version of the Golden Rule pops into my head in times of challenge...if this doesn't work or doesn't inspire l stop and breathe! Your posts have shone light on many of my days in the last 4-5 years.ReplyDelete
Love you Deb. Always here if you want or need to chat, hang, debrief or just eat nice food xxxReplyDelete
I think as you get older and more contented in your skin you start to see your faith in a different way , it becomes more personal and less about church . Church can eat up your life to the point where there is no room for the faith part. Some need the belonging that is church . somehow I dont think God minds , he knows whats in your heart after all .ReplyDelete
Been down this road......I found a friend to walk it with me, and we explored every thing from faith stages, to the emergent church. It's an unexpected journey, but one that expands your faith, if you let it. Hang in there. A good place to start reading might be Brian McLarens books, he was in NZ the year before last and I was fortunate to hear him speak. He was a good place for me to start. Take care and God bless.ReplyDelete