My good friend Adrianne left me with a great phrase that perfectly summarizes this array of thoughts and ideas floating around my blog the past few days and I have therefore used it as my title. If you haven’t been here, please read the “manifesto” post below and all the comments that followed it. It’s good stuff.
I’m not sure where to begin today. I guess the fact that my friends have responded to my doubting in the sincere, non-judgmental, refreshing way that they have means something is happening in the church. In a way, we are all in the same place: wondering what it all means, but handling it in different ways. Adrianne works for a church, Mary has gone through a tough stretch but of late has felt all the love of God streaming through her life. I have stopped going to church. I see God’s presence around me in my garden, in the sky, in people, but I am yet unable to re-join the world of Christianity. Two years ago I was terrified of what everyone would think of some things I had done with my life, ie. deciding not to go into ministry and getting married. I don’t really hide anything anymore. I am a much more honest person. I can’t say I have much of a relationship with God right now, but I don’t doubt His existence. I just don’t know how to relate to Him honestly anymore, with so many big, fundamental questions.
I think I am my own harshest critic. Part of my inability to be around a church or read the Bible or pray anymore has to do with my own judging of myself. If I lived on and off for years acting (to a degree) like the world’s best Christian without being totally honest with myself, what does that mean for other Christians? What does that mean about God that He let me (or led me) across the world to be a witness to people for things I didn’t necessarily believe? Not that my time overseas was wasted or in vain, because I wouldn’t trade those precious times for anything. I learned so much about the world, about people, about myself even. I loved and laughed and had great fellowship with my teammates.
I am just so stuck now on what is true. Maybe my problem is that I feel like I need some truth in order move on, in order to know what’s right and do it. Isn’t that what the Bible says? The truth will set you free. Everything I have learned taught me that Jesus is Lord and Lord of the whole world. Is that true? Is everyone that doesn’t know about Jesus in this world going to hell? (Sorry to be frank, but what’s the point in glossing). Maybe there is no answer to these questions without becoming a fundamentalist, which is rather unsavory and revolting to my spirit, but I just don’t get how to live in that mysterious gray area.
I don’t have too much time for elaboration tonight, but as usual, I love the discussion, so please comment.