I reminded myself today I live in the state of Kentucky because of religion. Due to the fact our family moved here a bit over 10 years ago to work in a church. And even way before that, in 1991, I moved here with my husband so he could attend Asbury Theological Seminary. If I’m honest, I will let you the reader know, we actually moved here another time in between there somewhere, and it too was based on church situations.
So for me, the actual original reason for dwelling here is due to church, God’s call and if one wanted to lump it all into one neat category: religion.
Now, if you are a regular reader of my blog or you actually know me, you realize my life today is much different than those many years ago when I first relocated to Kentucky from San Diego. My kids are nearly both grown, my hair is turning gray, and my husband and I are in the last stages of divorce, among many other changes. All this time later, I am no longer as certain about a specific call on one’s life, especially mine. Nor do I know exactly how I feel about much theologically, when in the past I did.
Nonetheless, I desire a regular place of worship. I want a church home. At least most of the time I do. I have regularly attended a church for some time. Alone. And for the most part I like it. But I have yet to become truly immersed and I’m not sure I ever will there. I’ve met some people there and tried a few different options. I like their services. Yet there’s been a nagging in my brain to give another church a try. A church in my neighborhood. A church part of a denomination that if I was forced to choose, I’d most likely line up with them above all the other majors. I’ve been there before and realized it wasn’t for me. But they have had some changes and I have undergone some changes…..so maybe, maybe now they are for me.
Today I did the brave thing [for me] and visited. It was not something I planned out. I simply decided yesterday to go. When the first item on their agenda was “greeting time” I regretted my decision. I have never, ever been a fan of the church greet. But I managed and decided I was stable enough to get through the hour.
I am surprised to admit I was not ready for the emotions I felt during the service. There were seminary students. The church is similar in both neighborhood and building design to one my husband was on staff at years ago. Not to mention the same denomination. And the pastor is in the middle of a series on the book of Nehemiah. Of all the sermons I heard my husband preach during our years together, his series on Nehemiah still resounds in the inner workings of my brain. Memories. Lots and lots of memories. And memories often bring up questions. Why? How do I account for this now? Was there really ever a calling? If so, where did it go? Does it still apply to me?
Does the reason I ended up here, right here in this very house, mean anything today?
Will I return to the church I visited today? At first I thought a definitive no. Especially when I saw one of my husband’s ex coworkers head up the aisle for communion. Too much water under the proverbial bridge. I’d rather not deal with the questions. Or my preconceived ideas. And still I’m not sure. Maybe I won’t be sure.
I am certain I don’t have to know now. And I have to learn to be content with what’s right for me. Even if the question askers are not happy with my answers. My guess is I’ve put enough time into the church world to make a sound decision, one way or the other. Whether I end up at the neighborhood church or the one just a few blocks out of my neighborhood probably won’t change the world’s order.