Sunday, May 31, 2009

Church-Community-Independence-Solitary

I had a conversation with a friend recently about different kinds of churches. We compared independent nondenominational churches with those which are part of a denomination.

My view is that there is a potential problem with nondenominational churches because of their independence. That is, there are no checks and balances to keep a pastor from becoming corrupt with his power and authority. Also, there is no larger church structure to help individuals and individual churches discern what God's will may be for them.

Faith cannot grow independent of community. Our relationship with God is personal, but not only personal. Like a human family, we also have a communal relationship with our Heavenly Father.

The irony of what I was saying was not lost on me. That is, as I am on a more or less independent spiritual journey, apart from my home church, here I am talking about the importance of community. My response? Balance. Sometimes one has to be the community member, and sometimes one has to be the hermit, or solitary. I am on a more solitary leg of my faith journey right now; but in time, it will be time to rejoin the community, or join a new community.

I miss not having a personal mentor for this leg of my journey, but I know that in God's time, and in His fashion, that too will be taken care of. Maybe at this time, I will have several "mentors", each helping with a particular part of the journey. Some may provide guidance. Others, support. And I hope all will pray for me.

So the Journey Continues...

Well, I tried attending my present church -- just as a girl in the pews, just as a worshiper. The service was lovely, the kids and adults in the praise band were great, and I even saw some new faces. The priest had a great sermon about how God's love surpasses all our challenges and crises, and even joys.

Unfortunately, my personal baggage (which I have to leave to those who already know) prevented me from really getting the message.

This was a test. It confirms that I have to leave "home" for a while in order to heal from the wounds I received there. No community is perfect, so I'm not bashing my church. There are indeed many great, godly people there. These people will remain my friends no matter what. And I hope any other relationships will be open to true reconciliation. My intention is to return home, unless God has other plans. And I have to remember that this is all on God's time, not mine.

So, I will be an itinerant worshiper...for a little while. Blessings to you!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Quick Update

Met with my friend today. I was reminded of several things, but these stand out the most:

1. I need to be spiritually fed. I can't give what I don't have. To truly be able to serve, I need nourishment and strength.

2. Trust God and take baby steps. I don't have to make a permanent decision until I'm ready.

3. Get my relationship with God right, and the relationships I have with other people will be right.

4. It's OK to crosstrain -- going to different churches to receive what I need.

5. It's OK to give myself time and space to heal.

6. Forgiveness helps me as well as the other person. If I need some space in order to do that, then I need to allow myself to be apart from the person I am to forgive.

I'll share a bit more later.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

I'm meeting with a friend tomorrow to discuss my relationship with my church. It is indeed a conflicted relationship at the moment.

That's all I can write for now. I'm hesitant to unwittingly violate anyone's privacy.

I ask for your prayers. I'm sure that much is OK to post.

Blessings,
E

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Life and choice

"You made me..." Has anyone ever told you that? Yep, it's happened to me.

Just thinking about Jon (as in J&K plus 8) and his quote from his mother. Not that it was originally from her, but worth quoting nonetheless: Life is about choices.

No one "makes" anyone do or say anything. It's all choice.

Even if you had a gun to your head, you'd either choose to comply with the gunman and possibly live, or refuse to comply and likely die. Either way, it's still your choice.

Yep, it's about choices, baby.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Well, here's the first blog about something -- Jon and Kate

So, how about Jon and Kate (of the reality show, TLC's "Jon and Kate plus 8") tonight? It's sad that each of them said they were there for the kids, but no mention was made of themselves as a couple. (For those of you who are for some reason unfamiliar with this show, here's a link.)

Kate, being the more vocal and forceful of the two, has taken a lot of heat for the potential breakup, but Jon shares a lot of that responsibility as well. Jon was right as he quoted his mom: life is about choices. No one makes us do anything that we do not choose to do. He did make some poor choices, including some of his passive-aggressive behavior on the show.

But also, I think that Jon has allowed Kate to be the head of the family, and Kate -- with the more forceful personality -- took that and ran with it. Jon hasn't been "the man" in that household for some time, and the family has been the worse for it. I guess you can see that I have a traditional view of family here -- fathers are to be the heads of the household, with mothers working closely and supportively alongside them. I really feel for Jon, who seems frustrated by having to be the stay-at-home daddy. I don't think that's a natural role for fathers.

I wish that TLC had offered them some counseling to help them through this rough patch. After all, having the television show made TLC a lot of money while it put Jon and Kate under a tremendous amount of stress. I'm not a J&K basher, but really, how good can any of this be for the kids? I also hope, for the family's sake, that they have saved a lot of the money they got from their show, because it won't go on forever.

I am a fan of "Jon and Kate plus 8". I enjoy seeing the kids grow and their parents deal with them in everyday situations. But maybe enough is enough now, and the family should take some time out of the spotlight to regroup and heal.

My New Blog

Greetings!
I expect that this blog will cover varied subjects, including ADD, religion, spirituality, relationships and psychology. While I may quote someone or post a video from time to time, mainly this is a forum for me to post my opinion on the above and more.

If you enjoy reading what other people think about things (as I do), then, "Welcome!" I hope to post much and often.

Blessings to you!
E