Monday, August 6, 2012

Shhhh, it's a Secret.

For three months after we lost Kasey, I couldn't go into a church. I would sit in the parking lot, staring at the church...and I would panic.

Sometimes I would make it inside, only to turn around and leave within minutes.

I just could not do it.

I was finally able to sit through a worship service. But, I have a big secret...

Sometimes, church still hurts.

I am not, I believe, in any danger of ceasing to believe in God. But, I do not always believe in a good God.

"When you are happy, so happy you have no sense of needing Him, so happy you are tempted to feel His claims upon you as an interruption, if you remember yourself and turn to Him with gratitude and praise, you will be - or so it seems - welcomed with opened arms.

But go to Him when your need is desperate, when all other help is in vain, and what do you find? A door slammed in your face, and a sound of bolting and double bolting on the inside. After that, silence. You may as well turn away. The longer you wait, the more emphatic the silence will become."

                                                                                                   C.S. Lewis
That is the danger. Not that I will stop believing in God, but that I will begin to hear only the silence, and that it will overwhelm me. That it will sink into my soul and I will not be able to hear Him anymore.


  1. I have not always been able to believe in a good God or even any God. I think church hurts a lot more people than would let on. Some people just wear their masks well.

    (I don't mean that church is all pain and that people are all fakes or masks are all bad, but church, like life, is complicated, to make an understatement.)

    Wishing you the best, always.

  2. Carlie,

    I had to take a few days to think about your comment before I could reply - sorry for the delay.

    I guess for me, what hurts is feeling like there needs to be a mask at all! Church is supposed to be family - and many times it is...if we can let it be.

    But, too, we put a lot of restrictions on church that I don't believe should truly exist - like masks. Who made the rule that we always have to be happy at church? And, why on earth do we let that 'need' rule whether or not we are real with one another?

    Thanks for commenting, by the way. You are practically the only one that does! Hoping to talk to you soon. Love ya!

    1. Church really SHOULD be like family, and ideally there would be no masks at all. I just haven't found that in church in years.

      I'm sorry that I don't have any encouragement for you. I've spent over a decade looking for a church in 3 different states and another country, and there hasn't been much room for my real self in them. During some of the toughest times of my life, it wasn't my church family there for me (and at times, they were particularly unsupportive).

      I have to wonder if I see the church I grew up in with rose-colored glasses and if masks are just an everyday part of life now, especially at church. It's hard for me to tell if things were different because I was a kid or if things in general were just different then. Probably both. I know some of it is also that I have made choices that my church would prefer I hadn't.

      But I'm not a good faker, and I don't see the point. Faking breaks me, so most often, I keep my distance. Sometimes I go to church hoping that my kids will find something that I can't, but then I wonder if it's just going to hurt them too. What can I do but try?

      Thanks for being real. ;)

    2. Thanks. No point in doing it if I'm not going to be honest - that's my take!