Jenni's Jargon

the thoughts that run through my head

I am a…Christian….shhhh

on March 25, 2016

Cross-on-Block

I have always considered myself a Christian. I was raised in the Catholic Church and enjoyed learning about God and Jesus through church and the few classes i attended. I continued with the Catholic Church through college. It seemed to serve my need for order and ritual very well, I am a very linear thinker and a bit (or more) of a control freak. ¬†However, I also consider myself a feminist and love the rights that women before me have forged for me. This is where the church and me clashed. I am very Pro-Choice and very Pro-birth control. I also have many friends who are in the LGBTQ lifestyle and I just can’t be part of a religion that shuns them for loving who they love. Those points among some other spiritual difference caused me to leave the church.

I began a spiritual journey, as many people in their 20’s or in College do. I began to read books on different religions, including Christianity, to figure out where I fit in the world called Spiritually or Religion.

I tried for a time (very short lived) to be a Buddhist. I love the teachings and principles of Buddhism. However, the practice of meditation was one that was (and still is) very difficult for me to grasp. I have a very hard time clearing my mind and this just made me feel like I was failing. The other part that was hard for me was Buddhism is quite an individual journey. I can see how this can be quite enticing for many people, but for this extrovert it seemed quite lonely.

Buddha

Then I came across this book. This book helped me put a lot of my spiritual life in perspective. As a linear thinker, I have a lot of doubts about things that can’t be proved. I know there is proof that Jesus was a real man and when he lived. It has always been hard for me to figure out how he could be the son of God and perform all the miracles that are listed in the Bible. My heart was telling me to have faith and just believe and my brain was telling me to find the proof. What Paul F. Knitter’s book did was help me deal with the doubts I have and help me to apply the principles of Buddhism to my everyday Christian life.

Being a Christian in the last 5 years or so has come with its own challenges. Ever since politicians have been using Christianity during their campaigns, and all the extreme Christian groups have been coming to the forefront, it has put a stigma on being a Christian. There are several denominations that are Christian but don’t bear the brunt of the stigma based on their name; Lutheran, Baptist, Presbyterian. However, if you come out and tell people you are a Christian, they look at you sideways with the “Oh, you are one of them” looks. I am here to tell you that I belong the the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ, and I am proud to call myself a Pro-Choice, Feminist, Liberal Christian and it took me a long time to come to this place and know my relationship with God. I am currently bringing my son up as a Christian as well and so happy that he is finding his own journey with God and finding people in our church that he can love and trust. I will never protest at a funeral, I will never tell you that I am better than you because I am a Christian. However, I will love you for the person you are, no matter what, I will conserve judgement (or I will try), I will make mistakes in my life and I will try my best to live a good life every day. I will also express my opinions (and I have some big ones) and not apologize for that expression based on my freedom and free will. I want to hear your opinions as well. Tell me about your spiritual journey, I am quite interested in other spiritual practices and I love to see how I can incorporate those practices in my own journey.

Jenni

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