And I dug right down to the bottom of my soul
To see what I had inside.
Yes, I dug right down to the bottom of my soul
And I tried, I tried.*
I’m so excited because I’m gonna go to church for the first time in six weeks. Actually, I wasn’t excited at all. I went because the GRD sent me a text message, and I felt that if he could take the time to invite me to the Lenten service, the least I could do was attend.
This explains why the Boy had a smudge of dirt on his forehead when I got him after school. Ash Wednesday, duh!
I arrived early, not because I like to sit in the front, but because I like to sit so that I have easy access for the Christian equivalent of a Dine and Dash, the Pray and Dash. Also, we have been clobbered with a mother of snowstorms and parking spots not protected by a lawn chair or covered in ice are few and far between.
I ease into the sanctuary, taking in the smells and sight of the place I use to spend hours in. The feel of the pew under me and the hushed silence that only exists in a church.
Soon, I was enveloped by people who hugged me, some kissed my cheek, some gave me a pat. They all said basically the same thing:
“Where have you been?” And “How ARE you?” And the always popular,
“You’ve been on my mind!”
I can’t place the blame on these people. They were thinking of me!
Yes, I am being sarcastic.
Before I place the blame solely on the people I deem as pseudo concerned, I reflected and I came up with these theories.
- Facebook status updates convince them that I am fine. I talk about selling Girl Scout Cookies, the Boy teeheeing over Moby Dick, or the Mister’s disgust with the show Hoarders (definitely more on THAT later) the Saints can surmise that I’m doing okay.
- My own silence. Whether looking for people to purchase GS Cookies, help the Boy with a Cub Scout project, or sell my OWN cookies, I’m Loud Mouth Lucy. But to go deep and actually reveal my pain, my uncertainty that God hears me, my questions…who wants to open themselves up for a possible bashing?
- Their own hesitantcy to approach such an enigma of a person. The Mister will tell anyone who asks that I can be a moody mother-shut-your-mouth. I don’t deny it. Working in retail sales, you learn how to read a person. I know how to read a person, but others may not have the same sensitivity to know when I need a kind ear or just someone to sit with me.
Four (well five if you count The GRD) have actively looked for me on Sundays or any other day. One calls me, and tells my answering machine, I know you’re there, but one day you’ll pick up and I’ll still love you.
Two others continually invite me to become more involved in the church, explaining that this would shake me from my ambivalence. I put them off, claiming I’m too busy, but my busyness is more about me catching Judge Judy or giggling at the fools on American Idol.
The last one is like a penny. This one turns up in all parts of the city. I think this might be my angel in disguise.
What I love about Christianity:
- God. My sins are forgiven. Unlike people, God only sees the good to great in us. He does not sit in Heaven deciding who to screw with today, or despite the misuse of this verse**, not giving us more than we can handle.
- My Pastor. Thanks to him, I would be a lost, angry(er), bitchy(er), messed up soul. But thanks to his careful guidance and patience, I was reborn to a life in Christ.
- The Bible. Sometimes some of it does not make a bit of sense. Then there are times when I open it up and it’s like I have the light bulb moment.
- My children have embraced a love of the Lord that I didn’t know until a few years ago. They still are kids, pushing me to see what they can get away with. But I’m comfortable and confident that they have a foundation for making wise decisions when I’m not around to do it for them.
So it’s not Christianity that I have a problem with, but Religious People aka Church Folk.
I sat in church yesterday and tried to feel SOMETHING. I felt nothing. The music didn’t move me, the preaching didn’t move me. The thought of being stuck in the ice moved me to leave.
But a voice from down at the bottom of my soul
Came up to the top of my head.
And the voice from down at the bottom of my soul,
Here is what it said:
Give it a chance! People are going to disappoint ALL the time. Even the ones who claimed they were gonna (insert their action here), deserve a second chance. Weren’t we ALL forgiven when “He gave His only Son?”
So despite feeling “Nothing” I’m going to use this 40 days in the season of Lent to consecrate myself and ask God to direct me.
I have hopes that this will make me feel ‘something.’
* Nothing from a Chorus Line
** The actual verse is:
1 Corinthians 10:13 (New International Version)
13No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.