ugh…so i’m at a different coffee shop today. While I feel like i’m cheating it’s nice to be in a different spot. They have board games just laid out for people and the tables have checkerboards. so that’s a neat thing that they have…
I’ve heard a couple of people say ” doesn’t she know this is a christian place?” I mean…yeah…if I didn’t I’d have to be blind and death. the place has a small mural of a church and they play christian music. if I didn’t guess they’re christian then I’d have to be blind and death. One patron even asked the barista to “send me on my way” to which she replied ,” she’s not hurting anything.”
There’s something to be said about the generational gaps that occur within a set religion.
bit of background on me and religion:
I was brought up in a southern baptist church. Not my choice but eh…I suppose my father found it difficult to teach me a system of morality as he was working 60-80 hour weeks or traveling for work. In any event the church was left responsible for giving me a system of morals.
If I wasn’t off at soccer/softball practice and the church doors were open then I was there. I was in the choir, on the drama team, the puppet team, the dance group, the door to door ministry, I even went on mission trips to guatemala and mexico multiple years in a row..
At the time I firmly believed in what I was taught.
That sins are sins and if the afterlife existed and by living a certain way the eternity promised would give eternal bliss. I wanted every one to know about that eternal life hack..
Which sounds good..
but then things started happening. I began talking to people of different backgrounds. They all seemed happy but they rejected what I believed. They didn’t really live in sin but somehow they were happy without the promise of eternal bliss. It confused me. I started asking questions.
Then I noticed things I was feeling.
I heard so much hate from the church when that wasn’t what Jesus was teaching.
I saw so much vanity.
Those were the first things to bother me. but I thought that if they were sinning in such manners then the way I felt about exploring other religious ideas, or even the way I felt about homosexuality, surely wasn’t that much of a sin. Curiousity was only a sin in Eden. Homosexuality would save the planet.
That wasn’t what they believed though. My natural inclinations of acceptance, forgiveness, and generosity were sins.
“Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live,” my father told me after finding my secret stash of pagan books then burning them in the yard.
“I can disown you for this,” he’d said.
I tried so hard to change my ideas. It hurt to isolate from the friends I had made. It hurt to not want men. It hurt to want to be independent, to learn, and to grow. I was a sin.
The guilt over not being able to change my natural inclinations and to not be accepted by the place I had believed so firmly in…to be rejected for existing.. became apparent in the deep cuts I’d leave on my body. I couldn’t bleed the sin out.
No matter how deep or often I cut, I was who I was.
This tension between the church, my family, and I eventually expounded in me packing a backpack with what clothes my step mother hadn’t burned and catching a bus to a new town a full 6 months before I was due to graduate highschool.
I still graduated. With honors. My state test scores blinded my new high school. They offered to send me to college for free but…I needed time. I needed to know if my “sinful” nature would be accepted in the real world.
It has been. My spirit of generosity, acceptence, patience, and a wild host of other things that the church mistakenly taught me have made my life worth living.
Dam protestant bastards…
*** Not all churches are like that. If religion works for you, so long as you aren’t hurting someone, then I’m chill with you. By all means tell me why the earth is round, or how creation started. I’m all ears for that. But if you’re legit just hating someone, who isn’t hurting anyone, for being themselves then you’re a piece of shit in my book.