Posted in Life, Religion

Faith & Life’s Meaning

What are we living for? I mean really? What does it mean to be a Christian??

I can say that in some ways I feel lost. In other ways-I feel like I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be: in the world not of it.

I spent most of my childhood in church. I was taught how to get blessed, what sin meant, how to live a life pleasing to God, etc. and most of it involved following a set of rules. You can’t do this or that. We don’t believe in this. Those people over there? Yea they’re going to hell.

How can we be so sure?

My life altering experience is two-fold. The first comes from my visit to a seminary during my senior year of college. The Christianity I encountered there was NOTHING like I grew up with.

It was loving. It was inclusive. It was mind stimulating and didn’t require me to check my brain at the door. It was…refreshing.

When I returned home to my large mega church I’d never felt more empty.

I slowly began to disengage from church until I was no longer attending. I wanted more. More than just a show on Sundays rooted in emotion. I had questions I wanted answered but wasn’t in an environment I felt would welcome them.

I understand the African-American tradition is a rich one, full of history & heritage dating back to the days of slavery. How could I reconcile my faith with what I saw and experienced on a regular basis? I felt like an outsider in a community that claimed to be loving.

My other experience is an ongoing one…meeting people who love and follow Christ’s teachings but aren’t linked to a specific local church community. They’ve shown me what love REALLY is. Moreso than people who self-identify with Christianity.

Life isn’t meant to be lived inside of this Christian bubble we insulate ourselves in. Life is meant to be lived OUT, to share our lives with others. To be present with them in their times of struggle, to not just say ‘I’ll pray for you’ and then walk away, but ‘I’ll pray WITH YOU, let’s do something about it together.’

There’s so much I could write about it, but in my ‘wilderness’, I’ve learned so much about what it means to be human and love God, love people. More than any sermon I’ve ever heard.

I am still learning what it means to have faith in a world that can easily cause you to lose faith in humanity. I have faith. I have not lost hope and pray that I never will.

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Author:

A thirty something city kid from the midwest (born, raised and educated in Ohio!) Urban/Higher Education professional, I love supporting schools and organizations in their efforts to educate urban youth and young adults. I'm also passionate about helping young adults find their purpose and live it out! I'm constantly growing and evolving. I'm a mom to a brilliant active little boy, a proud member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Incorporated, and I'm ready to change the world, one life at a time!

2 thoughts on “Faith & Life’s Meaning

  1. So I just found your blog from your Facebook post, and can completely relate to this post. I found myself having the same struggle and you know what helped me? I found a “White” church to attend for awhile. The differences were startling…the way that they loved on people, the way the Word was brought forth with the right balance of compassion and conviction, the amount of activities offered outside of Sunday service and bible study…It really helped me understand what LOVE feels like. I don’t know what it is about Black tradition that had me feeling so alienated, but there was a stark difference.

    Thankfully we were led to a “Black” church that actually knows how to love its members and community…a rare gem in a pile of judgmental muck.

    I really hope that God continues to guide you during this period!!

    1. Thank you! I definitely know what you mean by feeling ‘alientated’ by black tradition. There really is a stark difference. I’m SO glad you and your husband found another church to attend, I think me and hubby will find that when the time is right. For now, finding other people to fellowship with is huge, and hard to come by all at the same time, but our faith is still strong. God is with us, and He is most definitely guiding us! Thank you for the encouragement!

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