Rejuvenated, restored and renewed after my mini-vacation in Manhattan last week. No writing, very little contemplating, and no stress at all. A week of Central Park, jazz, good food, Broadway play, Times Square, good friends. Ahhhh – I give it a 10! Now, breathe and continue to write.
So, let me recap a bit for you. I am wading through the waters with you; writing about my journey outside the walls of an institutional denominational structured church setting. We are the church so why all the fuss about this anyway? Well you see, in writing this, I am laying bare my thoughts for all to see. Why even write a blog on it? Well, this is mainly for me. Then the overflow of me will hopefully minister to some of you. It is my journey outside the constraints of presumption in which people bind me to their expectations of who I am or what I should be. This is drawing the line right here right now.
So where did I leave off? Oh yes, my religious addiction to performance and its accompanying affirmation to make me feel as if I must work for God, do for God, strive in God, pray more, read the Bible more, prophecy more, more and more. Yikes! How honest do you want me to be? In my life, there is no middle ground. It’s all or nothing for me. My intense struggle to be back “in the mix” after making the decision to ‘come out’, was all consuming. Little did I actually realize that making the decision to ‘come out’ was just the first step. I walked away from religious constraint and control but like those who left Egypt with Egypt still in their heart, I was known to say some things that sounded a lot like them.
Exodus 14:11-2 11 Then they said to Moses, “Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you so dealt with us, to bring us up out of Egypt? 12 Is this not the word that we told you in Egypt, saying, “Let us alone that we may serve the Egyptians ’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die in the wilderness.
“OMG, I never saw this coming. I thought – crossing over, dancing a little like Miriam in joy, eating, drinking and complete happiness. I never thought it would be like this. This desert condition – it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Where’s the affirmation? Where’s the applause? Where’s the schedule? This isn’t easy and it’s only been a few months.”
Exodus 16:3 And the children of Israel said to them, “ Oh, that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat and when we ate bread to the full! For you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.
“What, no three to five point sermons? No worship service to get a spiritual high to last me through whole week? No glowing praise over those wonderful prophecies I brought forth. No affirmation from those who love and adore me. What will I do now? Where do I go to be filled? You do realize Lord that it’s just Marvin and me now. Good God, I should have reconsidered this decision.”
Exodus 17:3 3 And the people thirsted there for water, and the people complained against Moses, and said, “Why is it you have brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?
“This is hard. (No actually, it was more like this. This is haaaarrrrrrrrrrrd! said with complete whining tone) What was I thinking? You set me up Lord. You brought me out here. I know you did. Now what?”
Get the picture forming? This is going to be sooooo good. And I am just starting. A little humor is good for all of us, along with the pain during life lessons learned. Girl on a mission, God in control – gotta get religion out, out, out.