Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Maybe I'm Not a Christian Anymore

"I just have no desire to get right with God. If you asked me if I believed in Jesus, if I believe he died on the cross for me, if I believe God exists I would say that without a doubt I do. That said, I still have zero motivation to cultivate that relationship even though in my mind I know that I need too."

I didn't expect to say that to my sister Kari on the way back from Costco two weekends ago. It wasn't planned. I hadn't really been thinking about it at all. I had homemade baby food and a much needed diaper change on the brain as I drove us home from Visalia that Saturday evening.

We had been talking about a family that has been close to us our whole lives that is planning to move back to California after a short hiatus on the east coast. I was asking for updates and wanted to know in what city they wanted to live. I wished out loud that they would live closer to us. That I always seemed to be a better person/better Christian when I was around them.

I said I needed that. Needed to surround myself with Christian people. And then those words just floated right out of my mouth.

I haven't been silent when it comes to God and I being on the outs. I am quite aware that we are at a pivotal moment in our relationship and that I may not be responding the way I should. I have also noticed that I have been gravitating towards Christian women on social media. I notice that these women are different. They capture me and I started to notice a theme: they are Christian. Now when I find a new blogger/vlogger than I like and see a verse thrown in here or there in blog posts or casually mentioned in YouTube videos, I'm not surprised. I almost roll my eyes at myself because for a while, I thought maybe I'm just not a Christian anymore. But here I am, starting to subconsciously seek out women that have Jesus in their lives in some capacity. To the point where they mention it and it's obviously not a big deal to their readers. It casually flows, an effortless part of themselves.

Without trying, I am surrounding myself with Christian women because (as my mom always said when I was a child) who surrounds you is a reflection of yourself. I, again unknowingly, sought out women that I want to be a reflection of because they are seeking Jesus and I know I want that as well.

Obviously, this isn't something I've mentioned to anyone so it was surprising when, all of a sudden, Kari and I are having this deep conversation in the car. She told me that she had felt the same way after having her first son. We talked about my aversion to going to church and she, so effortlessly, explained why. The reason I didn't want to attend church was the same exact reason she didn't want to after having her first son. Going to church requires having an open heart. It is hard to attend church without the emotions that you have been holding back bubbling to the surface. When there are so many people loving on each other, supporting each other, singing and praising, it's hard to keep your heart untouched, especially when you are aching to let go.

She told me that I needed to find a safe place to go where I could cry. (Which, shockingly, I still haven't done since Shepherd has been born.) She said I needed to go somewhere outside of my house, possibly outside of my little town and lay it all down. To take a real look at the state of my heart and what lies within it. For Kari, it was a worship night at the church, which sounds like something that would work, except I have over a years worth of pain, frustration and heartache to go through. There is going to be all-kinda ugly crying up in there.


Anyways, the main reason I haven't been so keen on talking about it is because I feel like I'm giving everyone whiplash. It's existential crisis after existential crisis over here. Since I started blogging regularly I've been just pouring out so many thoughts, so many repressed feelings that it's just been an onslaught of emotion. If you are annoyed by it, think of how I feel!

Becoming a mother in the way that I did, having a harrowing breastfeeding experience, being in charge of a tiny human with different interests and needs than my own, working full-time and supporting my wild album-recording dreamer, losing my best friend, being there as my sweet dog got slammed into by a stupid car going way too fast, almost losing my father-in-law, watching Bryan almost lose his dad....well, I feel that there hasn't been time to deal with anything. Let alone maintain a relationship with God.

The past year, I was thoroughly broken. Every bit and piece of me feels different and I'm floundering to figure out who I am. What I'm interested in. What I want. Who I want to be. I feel like I am this blank canvas and before painting can begin, I must deal with this junk I'm clutching. I can't be molded if I'm unwilling to soften.

The plan is to take a quick overnight trip somewhere that I can heal. I'm not sure when (or where?) that will be, hopefully soon. I've also been thinking of getting a mentor, someone older and wiser that is outside of my daily life, that I can go to for counsel and advice. Someone that can help walk me through this, bounce around ideas and pray with me. How does one go about finding a mentor though?

Being back here, writing again, is so... helpful. Thank you for reading. Thank you for sharing my posts. Thank you for supporting me and for your sweet e-mails and Facebook messages about my birth experience/postpartum fog. Most of all, thank you for your advice and for walking through all of this with me. I appreciate it.



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