Some time ago, I found myself sitting around a table with a group of folks I love dearly. J was telling me how beautiful the church he had been to that weekend was. Under my breath, I said softly, "I should have gone." The woman sitting next to me, someone I respect and love, said quite curtly, "Why? What's the point?"
I sat there shocked. And just smiled and brushed it off. Because I didn't know how to respond. How do you respond to someone you love, who has such a visceral reaction to the church you love so much? I prayed silently for the words to come, but I remained dumbfounded. I couldn't find the words.
This is something I struggle with as my faith grows. I'm constantly bombarded with folks I love, friends and family and neighbors and the like, that don't get my faith. They don't understand the point. I've actually been told on a number of occasions that I'm too smart to believe in God.
What's the point? Why do I go to church? Why do I believe in God? In Jesus? Why am I having such a hard time with this if Jesus is supposed to make my life easy?
I'm not going to write a book on this, probably not even a good few paragraphs, but I feel it's important I put my thoughts down. As a people pleaser, I've grown weary of this burden I've placed on myself, to live in two worlds: one of believers, and one of those who just don't get the point.
I don't have the ability to look around this world and just see the science of it. I can't look at the miracles I see every day and not think of a higher power. I can't look at my kids as just a bunch of cells growing into little humans, and now their own unique selves and personalities, then think there isn't a being who hasn't planned these kiddos from the start. I have three close friends, THREE, who were told they'd never have biological children, that it was medically impossible. But they did. With no medical explanation. I can't help but think that these aren't coincidences, and I also can't help but think we're all here for something other than living, dying, and slowly deteriorating underground in the dirt. Why?
I believe in the Bible. I believe there are things about the Bible we don't understand. I can't answer questions related to dinosaurs and fossils created millions of years ago, but I believe that truth will come to light at some point in time, either in this life or the next. I know bad things happen in this world that are difficult, sometimes impossible to stomach, but that does not take away the one thing I am absolutely 100% positive about.
I have faith. Faith that I'm not the beginning and end of all of this. Faith in a Lord who has shown Himself as an earthly man who was Christ. And faith in a love so strong, so powerful, resulting in a death so that I could experience eternal life. No condemnation. No guilt. Love others as I love myself. Admit my faults and disastrous inconsistencies, and believe. Believe.
Is that so crazy? And why does it make me less than intelligent? Do I think my faith makes me better than others? No. Do I think my faith gives me an upper hand when it comes to matters of the heart? Not necesarily. Because I'm human, my faith is imperfect. I don't fully rely on God all the time because I'm unable to get over myself. But I get up the next day, and try again.
This is my point. This is what gets me through my day. This is what makes me want to be a better person, a better wife. Mother. Daughter. Friend. Neighbor. Fellow passer-by. And this is why I go to church.
I know some of you don't understand this. And that's ok. My only wish is that you see me for me. See my joy in Christ's love. See me as a seriously flawed and imperfect person, who just wants desperately to love other people as Christ loved each and every one of us.
Until next time,