I Can Breathe NowSunday, September 25, 2016
Today is Sunday.
Half way through it, I started to feel guilt. I thought back on how long it has been since we were in church. Technically, it's been since April. Yet, I feel free. There was an old Gia that would scoff and say that I only felt freedom because I was living in the world and had fallen away from The Lord.
Is that even true?
I mean, I can't pretend to say that I know for sure much of anything. I've allowed myself to openly say that I don't have all the answers, nor do I feel compelled to have all the answers.
But I can breathe. I can ask questions and think deeply and speak out on important issues without fear. The more I think deeply and ask questions, the farther I feel I get from religion. Again, I get worried and waves of anxiety start to wash over me again.
Then the new Gia yells:
Jesus didn't come to start a new religion! He didn't. He came to reveal Himself and the Father to the people whom He loves unconditionally.
Now, I don't believe in hell. At least, not in the way I was raised to believe.
I am falling so far from the woman I was.
It scares me.
But I don't care.
I look at my children interacting with their father. There is nothing they could do or become that would ever cause Him to force them into eternal punishment of pain and torture. There is no way that Roger is a better father than God. God is our creator. He is our father. His love is great and mysterious and I simply will not try to fit it into a personal narrative anymore.
"But, Gia...the Bible says!"
All I can do is shrug. I've read the Bible. I know what people think it says and I know what I think it says, but it still doesn't resonate with the truth I've found in my spirit. So, was there more to the mere words on the page? Is there mystery we have not yet solved? And is it possible that God is bigger and grander and full of more love than mere English words can sum up on the page?
Lord, I certainly hope so.
If someone asked me to write a book that encompassed the love I feel for my husband and the children we made together...
It would fall so short of what I actually feel.
I'm not God, I know this. God can do anything. He can make what He wants known to us and can withhold whatever in the world He wants...
All I'm saying...is that my freedom has brought me truth I couldn't find within church walls. My freedom has come outside of printed words. My freedom has come by simply believing without proof, without answers, and without fear.
I'm not afraid of hell.
I'm not afraid of God's wrath.
I am free.
I can breathe.
I am deeply loved--so loved that I cannot measure it.
He has me. He saved me. I'm good.
And I don't ever want to fall into that spiritual bondage ever again.
Does this mean I will never enter a church again?
I don't know.
Maybe I will build something different?
Or maybe I will just become the church without walls?
But right now, I don't need to know.
I'm okay with that.
And today was an excellent Sunday.