This weekend was all planned out Friday night with husband, Saturday race with kids, Saturday night with sister, Sunday morning ride/run and then church. I made it through to Saturday night and then illness took hold. To the point where I slept like a teenager in a growth spurt, until 10:30. No bike ride/run and definitely no church.
It has been a long time since I have been to church on a regular basis. Of course, I went for Palm Sunday and Easter to my Mom’s church, but it is not my favorite place because of years of baggage. We spent some of the winter month’s attending the Catholic church, but I cannot get over some basic tenets of Catholicism that I think are plain wrong. Plus, husband did not really want to go there, it was just what felt comfortable as the worship of his youth.
I love God. I know that when I seek out God through prayer and worship…through study and song that I am a stronger, more focused individual. So why is it that church has such negative feelings or lack of initiative for me right now? Our experiences as a pre-married/married couple at our parish ended up being so negative that dear husband may never return to the Episcopal church. I was so hurt by his hurt by so-called Christians, that I certainly do not want to return to that parish. But starting a new is such a tedious process. You simply must want to do it in order for it to be accomplished. Church is not going to come out and get you. You have to go out and knock. Jesus said “Seek and ye shall find” He meant you have to seek. It won’t just drop on your doorstep. A relationship with a church community doesn’t just go poof.
And once again, the burden lies upon us. We must take time, effort, and courage to walk into the doors of a new place. We will be self protecting, of course, to not be drawn into a community only to see its horns of racism, elitism or fundamentalism. But, at the same time, we must open our minds to worshipping in a community that will not be uptopian. To find a community in which we can rejoice in God’s goodness, fellowship with others, and serve for the greater good while at the same time acknowledging and accepting its flaws.
The journey of faith is not finite. The love of God does not cease because one does not walk into a house of worship. This particular stop on the road, or hover, is not an end point, but merely a new beginning. I will go back to church and I will take the first step on the new road.
I’m just not there yet. And it is ok.