Monday, December 29, 2008

Me and the Church

I was not raised in the church. I started going to church in my early teens, and at the time it was exactly what I needed. I really go into church and got saved when I was 15 years old. At that time I was dealing with an abusive drug addicted step father that brought chaos with him wherever he went. The church was my sanctuary truly, I would go to church and just feel God there and feel safe. I was committed to reading my bible everyday, praying for every one's salvation and preparing for the rapture. I felt so safe and secure and it really steadied me in a lot of ways. But, with my involvement in Church came a lot of shame about everything about me. I was so ashamed that I lusted after women and didn't after men. I would pray all the time for God to take these evil feelings away from me. I active tried to pursue the man that I felt God had planned on me even when I felt absolutely nothing for them. I felt completely numb around them and I constantly questioned what was wrong with me, but I just didn't see any other options.

While I was in college I was very involved in the evangelical student group and put up with a lot of shit from them because we were all God fearing Christians. But, college also exposed me to all different types of people and the hardest to deal with were the few out and proud Queer people on campus, because they were a constant reminder of the lie that I was living. So during my senior year I struggled greatly with my faith, I was starting to feel disconnected because everything I had learned while in church was that God hated homosexuality, oh he loved homosexuals but hated the evil behavior, and I was terrified. I've been to so many different church services where the preacher preached so vehemently against queer people, did altar calls, calling for queer people to come up and be delivered from their wicked ways. So as I was dealing with my sexuality all of this came back to me just telling me that God didn't love me and I was evil.

Clearly I have come to embrace and accept me, wholly and completely, but I still have issues. I have been to queer churches and I know that the words of a many preachers don't accurately reflect God's word. I'm sure that God still loves me, but it's hard when you're constantly being bombarded by gay hating preachers. I realized at the Kwanzaa celebration church is no longer a safe space for me anymore, and that makes me sad. I miss church I want to go back a lot of times, but I feel like I've grown and changed so much and I'm not sure that I fit anymore. When I was hard in to the church I didn't want to hear about any other faith systems because mine was the only one. But, now I respect so many other faiths and have no problem integrating aspects of them into my own life. I have friends that are pagan and I don't see them burning in a fiery hell. Before in church I was taught that anything that isn't exactly in line with Christianity is the work of the devil. But its hard for me now, because I find myself uncomfortable in some Christian situations, not like before, and it honestly makes me worried sometimes. But, I don't know I just don't feel safe anymore in these situations. I don't feel that unconditional love I used to. I know this has a lot to do with me because not all churches are anti gay and homophobic, but just on the everyday its hard.
So this is where I'm at, and I don't know where I'm going but I just needed to get this out.

All trolls be warned your comments will be deleted. You know who you are.


Ty said...

Hey, I read through your post and felt compelled to reply briefly. I used to have issues when it came to my faith and my sexuality. I was constantly being told that I could not be gay and a Christian and I did stop going to church for a while. I met one pastor who made a world of a difference to me. He helped me to understand that God was an equal opportunity God and that love the sinner hate the sin was a load of BS. I am now at a point whereby I am happy with my relationship with God and belong to a congregation that is affirming. I do also incorporate aspects of other faiths into my daily life.

Anonymous said...

All I can say right now while I process some of my own thoughts and feeling is thanks for writing this.

creatrix said...

i hope that you find a safe spiritual space that is affirming and comforting...that's important for everyone.

peace to you.

“I remember how being young and black and gay and lonely felt. A lot of it was fine, feeling I had the truth and the light and the key, but a lot of it was purely hell.” ~Audre Lorde