So as of yesterday I attended a new church called Southland Christian Church here in Lexington, KY. What most people do not know about me is that I was raised southern missionary baptist, by my own choosing. My family is part pentecostal and part baptist. I loved church growing up and it provided a peace of mind to someone who needed rules. I never understood why I needed rules, but the Asperger’s definitely ruled that part of me. However, at the same time I needed the rules I could not understand how anyone could take religion literally. I mean reading the bible thoroughly multiple times through as a youngin you start questioning it’s intention. I never understood how anyone could read this and expect to follow it in this day and age. I have to admit I still feel this way; therefore, I have chosen to use the bible as a spiritual guide to God and not as a literal guide. This is my personal choice and I do not expect anyone else to agree with me.
I have taken years to really pray and meditate on this subject. I do not want my children to grow up HAVING to be anything. I want them to be called to God on His terms not on mine. I want to give them freedom of religion, something I felt like I never had. I have always taken religion to be a very black and white ordeal, but its not…how can love be black and white? How can someone read a book about love then dictate who gets to feel it and who doesn’t? I just cannot fathom this……again this is my own personal view and I do not want anyone having to feel like I think they should agree.
Growing up in the deep south of AR towards the border of Louisiana and Texas you can imagine the type of faith we have there. Only one faith….I call it the faith of Sunday. Meaning that if you go to church on Sunday regardless of church affiliation (Catholics are obviously excluded ;-P) then you must be good people but you are horrible people and obviously living in sin if you do not go. I never believed this rule, because my mom does not go to church and I don’t believe has ever even gotten a speeding ticket in her life. I also find that churches are more apt to help other church members in need over their own family members. I’ve seen this happen time and time again. Lets say if I ended up in a hospital in the same town as one of my family’s church member and that said church member was hospitalized a mile from where I was hospitalized at…(different hospitals) I do not have faith that my family would choose to see me over their own church member. (except for my mommy of course) Does this say anything about my family? I don’t know. I don’t think so, because logically you can view it as having the faith of sunday. Meaning that your faith dictates your actions and in the baptist faith they always discuss taking care of the church and of course the members make up the church. Now technically I was baptized in the same church but I do not attend that church…mainly because I moved away.
I find no fault in them, yet they find fault in me that I do not agree with that. I do not speak for every family member or deign to know exactly what they are thinking, but this is how I feel about it.
So, you can see that I have a completely different view of church, bible and god than the average baptist; therefore, how do I make church work for me and my children when I do not want my children to “hate the sin” so to speak. If you know this answer please please please explain it to me! 😉
However, until I have received such enlightenment I believe that this current church is my way to furthering my path with GOD. I walked into this monstrosity of a church and am first assaulted by the smell of coffee and donuts wafting from their in church coffee shops complete with chai tea and muffins!
I find myself wandering around waiting for my friend Kelly to arrive with her husband and their precious chunky butt of a baby Parker! I hear all of this music coming from a large hallway that is just filled with believers in God, I swear there are thousands of them. I then get close enough to hear “Power of Love” being sung by the church band on this HUGE stage! It was being shown on tons of wall sized Tv’s….there is NO way this was happening. I mean OMG if my family could have been there. Blasphemy!!!!
Well, I finally settle down into a chair 100 rows back and enjoy the music, the sermon, and the 2 baptisms that happened. It was a wonderful message and one that I felt comfortable with talking about what would happen to the world if we loved people the way we loved god. Could you imagine that? Loving your neighbor, husband, children, stranger, McDonald’s server, waitress, stripper, pimp, doctor, lawyer, etc the way we love God. There would be no strife, no worry, no starving children and no homeless families. We would work for the greater good not to greater our goods. This is something that everyday I have prayed upon. It is something that I am keeping in my heart. It is a new mantra of mine. Of course others are going to upset me, but it doesn’t mean that I forsake them.
So from little ole me to big ole you….I love you…the way I love God……or at least I’m trying too….it’s a work in progress! 😉
PS…Don’t forget to live this week without reservations….give someone in need a hug…(money might not hurt too…but definitely a hug!)