I had an epiphany tonight (Sunday, April 29, 2012)….
I have not consistently gone to church for a while. When I first moved out to the bestie’s and got the golf course job, I quit going because I worked on Sunday. Then, when I didn’t work on Sunday, I just didn’t have the energy.
Then one day, I realized that a church closer to me was being led by a Pastor I really liked/respected and thought maybe I’d start going to church there. And I went for a while. Then I took the ex along with me, because I was always trying to get along and do the right thing and blah blah blah. Then I left Blanchard, ended up back in Norman, and started going to a different church in Norman. Then the bottom fell out with the ex (again…who saw that coming…?) and I quit going to church.
I always just blamed myself for not wanting God to tell me that divorce was wrong. Now, I’m not going to try to condone divorce, because truly, I don’t believe in it. I also don’t believe in living in an adulterous relationship.
Tonight, I realized that maybe I’m not quite so worried about what God might say, as to what people will say. And this next statement is probably a little bit harsh, and judgmental, and I may get called out for it…but I think it’s time that I call a spade, a spade…. Watching my ex’s on again, off again, pseudo-faith, and watching him walk into a church that meant so much to me, that is filled with people that mean so much to me, and assuming that they think he’s the good guy, infuriates me. In fact, it makes me so mad I can’t hardly see straight. I want to stamp “fraud” on his forehead, and I want to stand before all of those people and defend myself, and my absence from weekly services. But in the end, I doubt it would do me much good, and I’m learning that the people that want to be part of my life aren’t standing in judgment.
(Note: the above statement is not meant to ever say that I did it all right, because I have never once tried to tell any one that I didn’t screw some stuff up in that failed relationship. I’m human, and I mess up – I am in as desperate need of grace as anybody else…)
I can’t say that I’ve never doubted God’s presence in my life these last three years, but I can say, looking back, that He has been there through it all. And my faith is a little bit stronger than I give myself credit for. And church is only about the people in so much as I can offer in service to making someone else’s life better – and the church is a great place to find people to connect with to serve, and to serve alongside. Church isn’t supposed to be about impressing people, or proving who is right….and maybe I need to work on forgiveness a little bit more…I should be able to walk into the same church as anybody else, and not spend my time worrying about what they’ve done wrong in any area of their life – whether is has anything to do with me or not….
So while this was my closing statement a second ago: “I think maybe it’s time to give myself permission to try a different church, I’m moving anyway…maybe finding one closer to home would be good for me….” and I’m not withdrawing it as a statement/something for me to consider, I should add: I should work on forgiveness a little bit more and remembering to make sure my heart is right with God and not worrying so much about what people think (whether of their own accord or by the persuasion of someone else’s words/actions).
5 thoughts on “Who am I really avoiding?”
First off you are a great writer. I found you blog by accident and the way you write I had to go back to the beginning and I have read all of your blog posts.
With that being said, now comes my honest opinion about your messed up life.
(I assume “if” you read all of what I write, you will just discard what you do not like)
I have got to say “You are one of the most judgemental, hateful, hypocritical “christians” I have ever had the misfortune of stumbling across”.
Likewise your ex is probably the most awful ex and worst dad I have ever heard of, over all he’s just “a bad person”
People like you two, are reason I will not step foot in a church again. If the bible is true, and heaven/hell actually exist. I would hope to go to hell so I would not have to spend eternity with you two.
You write about things like God’s grace, God being enough, and God’s love. Then you cry because you “think” God will ask you to do something you do not want to.
Then as it turns out it is not the possibility of God asking you to do “what ever” you are not willing to do for God. Nope, it is the people that are actually trying to forgive, love, and be Christ-like that bothers you.
You wrote about the people that “meant so much to you”, if they really meant that much to you. Why were they not worth forgiving? I guess it doesn’t work that way with those that “mean so much to you” or with your God that is only allowed to request things of you that you have pre approved for Him.
You wrote that your ex had an “on again off again pseudo faith.
Have you ever went back and read your own blog?
Even in this one post you went from loving the people of a church, to walking away from God because of those people, to you will allow yourself to find a new church. Maybe you should stop throwing stones long enough to find a way to seek God not the people of a church. People that apparently have found God well enough that at least they are willing or able to forgive those that you are not willing or able to forgive.
Again, I have read all your posts. I can honestly say at this point I hate your ex probably as much as you do. You want to stamp fraud on his forehead, I do not blame you. I have never met him and I find myself wishing ill will on him. Which got me to thinking. The people mean so much to you are willing to forgive him and see him as a “good guy”. Why would I wish ill will on a stranger? I concluded that all I know of him is what you wrote and it is negative and hateful enough that I hate him. Likewise as I have read your blog posts one after another I hate you as well.
It make me wonder if you are the reason he is so easy to hate?
Did you drive him to be a bad person or did he drive you to be a hateful person?
Either way I wish for both of you that you two had not had children together.
I feel sorry for him, because he will always have to put up with you being hateful.
I feel sorry for you, because you will always have to deal with a bad person.
Most of all I feel sorry for your children, because their lives are most likely going to be horrible. They will probably grow up to be hateful bad people, with a severely skewed view God.
Maybe you should focus less on dream catching and your ex should postpone travels and you two should focus on what is best for your children.
I know that I am not perfect. I have my own issues and problems, however I could not hold back my opinion any longer.
You both need to get help before its too late for your children.
So, first I need to start with this disclaimer: I’ve had ever intention of publishing your comment since I received it in email – but I don’t use my phone to do my blog stuff, so I had to wait until I had internet and a computer.
Next, I’d like to say thanks! That’s first paragraph about my writing made me blush and made me giddy like a kid on a holiday.
Then I read the rest of it.
My only answer is this: I am human, I need grace just as much as the next guy. And I have often thought of using this space that is my blog to document a near perfect, always selfless, shining faith that never falters. But guess what? I don’t have that kind of faith. So, I post about the doubts, but I’d like to think I post about more than just the doubts.
I’d like to throw out a line of saving grace for the ex that I paint as a bad picture, but I’m not there right now. I would only paint a worse picture given the recent turn of events.
I have never met a christian that has not truly questioned why God is asking them to do something, or what God is asking them, at least at some point. And I have misread and misjudged people, because of my own hurts.
Hurting people, hurt people – an offense I’m guilty of.
As for your concern for my children…all I can to you is that I am only one person, doing the best I can with what I have, and I don’t handle every situation right. But I don’t handle every situation wrong, either.
Thank you for taking the time to read my blog, and to share your thoughts.
“I know that I am not perfect. I have my own issues and problems…” Yeah, no doubt. Instead of being so judgemental on someone you don’t even know why don’t you fix your own life.
On a side note, I love how you said what you did, actually telling a stranger you hate them (seriously?), but made sure you were anonymous. Way to give your opinion, but hide who you are. I suppose that is one just one of your many issues, though.
The truth hurts sometimes doesn’t it? Especially when it’s about our own selfish desires. When people ask me if I’m in contact with my biological mother (my only mom until I was 22), I want to shake them and say, “do you have any idea what kind of hell she’s put me through? What kind of torment I go through on a regular basis wavering between guilt and protecting my kids from that woman?” But, that is not my place. Because I’ve realized that if I dwell on the ways others have hurt me, and try to bring attention to their faults, I’m forgetting the facts that 1) Jesus died for MY crap. My sins, All mine. Had I been the only sinner in the world, He would have died for me. Because I’m a total failure in the perfection department. And 2) that Jesus died for his/her sins just as willingly. Which means that in God’s eyes, we are equal. Judging other’s depth of faith is never helpful (though it sure makes us feel good, doesn’t it?), but the reality is that I have been there, and will be there many more times. I’m a hypocrite just as much as the next guy. In the Truth Project study, Del (the teacher) says a phrase that sticks with me when I’m feeling particularly judgmental. We are all born POWs. We have been taken captive by the devil and the lies of the world. Those who have found Jesus are simply rescued, while those who haven’t are still captive. We need to see them that way and pray for God to use whatever means necessary to rescue them. For some, it’s his Amazing, undeserved Grace. For others, it’s hitting rock bottom. Only God knows what they need and can direct their path back to Himself. It’s a tough lesson, being betrayed by someone close to you. But I hope that you can let go of your guilt and judgment, remembering that the sacrifice was lovingly given for you AND for the one who offended you. And find a church that meets your needs, and pray that wherever *he* goes, God will do the same. Easier said than done, but God has a way of helping us through those thought processes, if we only relinquish them to him.
Sorry for the novel, I’ve been burned and I know how easy it is to push everything regarding that person away. Even church. But you know you need it, I can tell. Praying that God gives you exactly what you need when you make that step.