Monday, April 23, 2012

The long road...

My whole spiritual existence in my 29 years could be summed up in a few words... "I don't know.'" And I didn't. My earliest experiences with religion involved a neighbor taking me to church when I was 5 or 6. I couldn't tell you the denomination, but I can tell you my mother was concerned when her god fearing 5 year old came home preaching that she was going to hell because she didn't go to church.

All of a sudden we were all going to a Unitarian Church, and I was receiving a Sunday School education in many different religions, including Christianity. I don't remember it very well, but I recall that the church trips to Mexico & Northern AZ were fun. I also think that I had trouble connecting with the kids in my class, but I don't remember why.

From there, I went where my mom did, right on over to paganism. Of course, I lagged behind her a few years, and I think most of my dabbling was driven out of wanting to feel closer to her after she left. Turns out, while she was away, she ditched religion all together, and now classifies herself as an Atheist.

After awhile, I just became ambivalent-- agnostic, or whatever you want to call it. I just didn't care, didn't really think about my spirituality except for a moment here or there, and I never let the small nudges really slow me down. I never picked up the bible. Never found a church.

These nudges have become more frequent over the last year, when finally we got a nudge in the form of a shove all the way from AZ to SC. You think that would finally convince me, but it didn't. It took living for a whole month with a plague filled house, fighting with my husband, and struggling, for me to finally hear the voice. What did I hear?

It was something along the lines of, "sure, you can probably get by ok with out me, but if you really want to thrive in this life, you are going to have to let me help."

Errrr. Wtf? Who just said that? Great, my sinus infection is making me lose my mind.

Except I immediately recognized that it was something more. Something I always claimed I needed if He expected me to become a believer. Proof. A sign. Talk to me! Tell me! I almost begged empty rooms to be filled with the faith that so many people just take for granted. I always wanted to believe, but I couldn't do it blindly, and I couldn't do it just because it seemed to bring other people comfort. Maybe I wasn't listening carefully enough, or maybe He didn't reach out until I would be receptive. Perhaps this earache is really Him, beating on my eardrums to PAY ATTENTION! I finally heard, and I already feel lighter at heart.

Next steps? Find a bible. Find a church. Write about it. Try not to care that my mom is probably rolling her eyes so bad it hurts. Do we ever stop caring what our parents think? Do we ever stop trying to please them? I guess I finally just realized that I should probably focus on pleasing someone else.Can someone just pick up the bible and start reading it without spending years sitting in a church? Will I "get it?" I feel like I'm at the edge of a cliff, about to jump into the vast unknown without my floaties on. What the heck, here goes!