…Hope…

hopeIt has been a little less than two years since I’ve truly desired to go back to church.  Coming from an “every Wednesday and two times on Sunday” family, church has always been part of my schedule.  But, part of my life?  Eh, on some level, I’m sure.  But on other levels, it was never an option to *not* go.

The decision to start going back to church wasn’t the easiest.  Church has become a battlefield for me – not because I believe I’m wrong with how I’m living my life, but because so many other people do, in fact, believe that and will pass obvious judgment because of it.

And yet, I still want to go.

And, when it comes to looking at churches to visit, I always wonder if the sermon that day is going to consist of condemning those individuals living the gay lifestyle, or if it will be a sermon of love and acceptance.  It can be terrifying walking into a new church for the first time – but walking into a new church, not knowing how people are going to respond to you, is absolutely unnerving…and nothing I’ve ever had to deal with before.

And yet, I still want to go.

This past Sunday, Dusty and I visited a church downtown that we heard was very welcoming and accepting – and it showed.  We were approached by various people.  Everyone seemed so happy and joyful.  It just felt good to be in that atmosphere.  And then the minister spoke.  He spoke about having hope through troubled times.  He spoke about being able to be hopeful when everything else around you is falling apart.

He spoke directly to me.

My life now is about as together as it has ever been.  But my life before, when the break-up with the relatives occurred, was anything but.  I had completely lost hope.  I lost hope in church – in God – in love between families – in respect and acceptance – in friendship – and so many other things.  And now…at a time when I believe I am as ready as I’ve ever been to listen…he was telling me that I still have hope amidst all of those trials.

And I do.

I have hope that my relationship with Dusty will last forever.  I have hope that my daughter will know and understand this relationship for what it is – and be okay with that.  I have hope that my spirituality…no matter what church I connect with…will be deeper and more stable than it ever has been.  I have hope that my relatives will grow to just understand that this wasn’t a choice for me…that it is just who I am…and that they can at least accept that.  And that’s just the beginning.  (I mean, I have hope for a Saved By The Bell: The Nursing Home Years show or something…but it doesn’t seem as pressing as these other ones…)

So, here’s to hope…and to so many great things that will happen in the near future.

[SAJ]

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2 thoughts on “…Hope…

  1. You’re cool! You’ll love Christ Church at Christmas!! Randy and Shauna are wonderful and Shauna understands personally what you’ve been going through.

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