Sundays used to be a day of great anticipation for me. Back in the day, you know, when I was a teenager and dating Mr. Houseful, it was the GUARANTEED day that I got to see him. In person. And we would find ways to hang out with each other in those precious four or five hours that we had out of the week. Yes. Five hours of church. I go to a black church. It’s our thing. You say something about it, I may get irritated even though I fully know that I have issues with being in church that long now that I am a parent and wife. C’est la vie.
Now, Sundays are a chore for me. They signal the end of the weekend. The day before the last day of getting to spend time with my love – uninterrupted. Days of long football days, which I don’t love as much as I used to, and days of trying to find reasons not to attend church services. Yep. I’ve become that person. Still holding fast to my salvation, but totally irritated with PEOPLE. Church people specifically. I’m constantly trying to find ways to keep my mind from going from praise and worship to embarrassment and disgust at the end of service because someone veiled in the coat of “mean well” says something off the cuff to me.
It’s definitely hard because I have a husband that is a minister. I hear preaching all week. It’s good preaching too! If I had a choice, I would sit and listen to him, but the thing is, HE knows personal stuff and I’m afraid that sometimes the sermon would be geared towards making me feel better instead of just being a sermon. Then again, when you don’t completely share your feelings with your husband, how could it always be geared towards personal? >sigh< Listen, let’s get one thing clear. I KNOW that going to church is not for the PEOPLE. It’s not to be entertained, it’s not for folk to make me happy. However, if we’re to be disciples of Christ, shouldn’t we love like him? I’m not talking the turn your head when people are doing wrong type of “love” but seriously, can someone get FULLY into service without having to deal with being chastised for something? It messes up the entire worship experience, and if it’s not done to uplift then is it being done right in the first place?
I haven’t written about church in a LONG while. My last post had to do with being tired of people asking if I was pregnant. It was a low point for me. Calling to attention my inability to lose weight in my midsection. It also let me know that I have a really quick temper. Make no mistake, comments on my body and whether or not I’m healthy enough by people still strikes a nerve, but I’m learning to temper myself. I am out of shape – however, I don’t want to hear that from people who aren’t really invested in making sure that I’m healthy, but using me as a basis for small talk, or making themselves feel better.
I feel like this is word vomit. Bump that. I’m pretty sure this is word vomit. But I feel better. I did go to church service this morning. I almost backed out when Mr. Houseful said something odd to me this morning. It’s gotten to be that easy for me. Say something that I don’t like, I’m not going to church. Except the problem with that is I’m losing. Badly. Maybe I just need to find another church home where I’m not so connected to everyone in personal ways. I have family, and church members who have known me since I was a kid. I sometimes feel like they still see me as that kid. Unable to make decisions. Parent. Be a wife. So.Much. Guilt. It’s a lot to deal with.
I think that what sent me over the edge is when someone who had read a blog post about my depression pulled me to the side and told me to rebuke the depression because it wasn’t of God. I responded that neither was cancer, but no one had ANY problem encouraging those stricken with it to go and receive treatment. The stigma of depression, or sadness is so taboo in the church,especially the black church (can’t speak for any others) that it really honestly drives those who need the church the MOST – away. We have to stop doing that.
That’s what goes through my brain on Sundays. Moving past the weight of wanting to stay home and hide because I can’t take people. Or go to church, put a smile on my face and maybe, just maybe, something will stick.