They say it’s a slow fade, and I guess you don’t realize that until suddenly gray has turned to black, and you no longer remember where you began.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve let cynicism and anger direct my steps, and slowly they’ve driven me further and further from the body of Christ, His mission, and most importantly, His presence.
Like many, I’ve been hurt by the Church and felt the burn of hypocrisy and isolation through the very ones that are supposed to be family. I used to be heavily involved, serving in positions of leadership, attending extra services, and regularly volunteering. However, after my experiences in leadership, I withdrew. I became so skeptical and hard-hearted towards the organization that I wanted to separate myself from it. Not only did I want to be disassociated with this kind of organization, but I slowly disconnected myself from practices and values we once shared. I became reserved in worship, saying that charismatic worship just wasn’t my style anymore. I attended fewer worship and prayer services, trying to avoid the idea of “super-spirituality”. I’ve denied the Holy Spirit the opportunity to move in my own world because I became so doubtful He was in the places people claimed he was, that I unconsciously stopped expecting Him in my own life. As I slowly made these shifts, the things I avoided, became less and less real to me. I never stopped believing that they were things to be valued, but my skepticism to practice them made them of no value or reality in my own life.
This was slowly creating a void in my relationship with God. He became more distant, less real, less relatable. I realize now this is because I was stifling the very things he provided to create a relationship with him, worship and communion with his body. I’ve struggled to find meaning in Scripture and felt little compassion for His people. I’ve become angry at God, feeling entitled to more than he has been giving me, not understanding the pain He has allowed and the prayers he has not answered. I realize now, these misconnections are a result of me disconnecting myself from the very things that build a relationship with Him.
Thank God for His unyielding grace that never stops pursuing. He is faithful to patiently wait out our wandering, but committed enough to pursue us in the middle of it. He understands our tendency to follow our flesh, to stray from his divinity, and is big enough to overcome all of that if we just provide Him the room to speak.