So, I’ve been thinking about going to church, lately.
No, no, don’t worry. I’m not converting and my soul hasn’t been “saved.” I still practice witchcraft and my beliefs are still what they have been (though I acknowledge that spirituality is always changing and my beliefs are not set in stone).
I’m just looking for somewhere I can go regularly to feel that spiritual connection. While meditating and praying and practicing at home are nice, they aren’t spaces dedicated to spirituality and they don’t give me the same sense of separation from the outside world that I like to feel, sometimes. Even after a cleansing, there is residual energy.
This isn’t a bad thing and it’s not a negative energy. But, my computer and craft areas give off a “work” energy, my exercise bike and weights give off a “fitness” energy, etc… These aren’t bad or negative, but they have a tendency to disrupt my ability to let go of the outside world and just be with God[dess]/the Universe/Nature/whatever you want to call it.
Maybe this is a sign of a lack of focus on my part and I need to practice harder. But, until I do learn to disconnect even when surrounded by connections, I’d like someplace to go that is dedicated to spirituality.
There are a few places I have where I feel that dedication and can disconnect, where I’m not checking my phone every fifteen minutes or worrying about the paper that’s due on Monday. But, those places are all up in North County and they take me a small eternity to get to. I’d like a place I can go regularly.
The first thing that came to mind was church. There’s just one problem: I’ve never actually gone to church (unless you count that one Christmas service I went to with Pup and his Mormon family a couple years into our relationship; but that was a holiday and probably shouldn’t be used to judge the standard). While I was “raised a Christian,” we weren’t what you would call “practicing,” so this whole church thing is completely new territory for me.
Enter Matt. For those of you who haven’t been around, I met Matt in my communications class during the 2017 fall semester. We don’t know each other very well, but we’ve talked and have a friendly acquaintanceship. He’s done missionary work, teaches Sunday school… Church is kind of his thing. And while spirituality and religion have always been personal and solitary things to me, as I’ve gotten older I’ve learned to recognize when I need help and to occasionally even seek it out. So, I sought out Matt’s help.
With great struggle, I answered his questions regarding where I’m at in my spiritual life at the moment (remember, this is something super personal and private to me and as nice as he is I still don’t know him very well, so, yes, I struggled). He talked a bit about his experiences, what he gets from church, and what he’s looking for on his path (basically answering the questions he’d asked me so that we know where each other is at).
I asked him some questions about what to expect from a service and he broke it down for me pretty well. I asked him about “off hours,” like just going to church outside of a service to sit and pray, that sort of thing. He was a little iffier on that, saying it would depend on the church, but for that sort of thing I’d probably want to look into a Catholic church. Which is about what I expected; it depends on the church.
He gave me some suggestions in regards to what he thought I might benefit from, based on what I’d told him. He offered to take me to a service at his church and to, I quote, “go church shopping” with me (which gave me the most delightful mental image of, like, browsing the “church section” at Target, or something). He said we’ll touch base again on Monday to figure out the details (he’s moving this weekend, so he probably won’t be able to make it to church this week; I also live out in the middle of nowhere, so meeting up might be tough for me).
Which, honestly, is leaps and bounds beyond what I expected. I really thought he’d just answer my questions and wish me luck, that sort of thing. So, the fact that he’s willing to actually go with me and follow up, so I won’t be just kind of vaguely floundering by myself in this new environment, means a lot. I’m really glad I decided to reach out to him.
If nothing else, this will be an interesting new journey for me and a learning experience. Hopefully, I’ll have an update for you all in the coming weeks.
I love you all.
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