How have I lost the church? It's not whether I believe, or am committed to the faith. I have lost my energy for the church. All those meetings... all that mucking around being careful not to offend someone's childish beliefs... keeping the choir happy, enduring woeful organists...
Do I want to belong to this body? I read the bible, and am moved, and challenged. My whole ethical understanding of life is based in Christianity. Yet church leaves me cold. Why would I go? Sunday mornings are an exercise in something I can't seem to hook into. I'm back in my late teens, wanting to see, to believe, and to understand, but not able to. I'm like someone who fell out of love and can't see why they were ever in love with that person. Yet I miss what I had.
Is it simply that with new understandings I still want old feelings and certainties that don't work? Did I ever have those certainties, or was it wistful thinking and self delusion? The truth is, I never did have them... not the certainties other people profess.
I hardly know what I am saying. Have I left the church? Do I no longer believe? No... I simply have no church where I belong. Perhaps, too, I have seen the dissolving edges of the skilful means of the church but am not ready to trust the solvent. And I am still too focused on me.
Posted July 11 2006
Direct Biblical quotations in this page are taken from The New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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