Friday, September 16, 2011


Spent a bit of time in prayer, just asking for God to grab me and hold on tight. Show me. Teach me. Help me. But most of all, hold me.

Read an online devotional that was so spot on, it's scary. Helped. A little.

Yesterday brought a panic attack for unrelated issues. Still feeling off today. How I wish this part of me would just get better. I hate who it makes me. I hate the thoughts that aren't mine. I hate feeling that dark.

Thought: I'm not sure anymore that I can be a Christian AND go to church. Weird, but I'm contemplating it nonetheless. So much of modern day American Christianity seems very wrong to me, and the farther I get from the mindset that surrounds it, the closer to God I sometimes feel.

Avoiding another outing with my family tonight. Feeling very alone.


  1. Just keep asking God for those things and know that He's there and willing to hold on to you! :)

    Have you ever tried or thought of trying church online? At least for awhile? My church has online services (which are basically the same as what we have in our in-person service). You should check it out: There's a piece at the top that always tells when the next online service is. And they have them all week long - not just at your typical times on Sunday morning. Our pastor is phenomenal too! :)

    Praying for you, friend!

  2. Don't feel alone...I Feel the same way, and it's Satan's best-kept secret...divide and conquer.

    SO glad you delurked. I'll be reading faithfully! :)

    Oh my goodness, look at your weight loss! YOU GOO GIRL!

  3. You are not alone, Miss. Not yet! Don't let the devil isolate you though. Avoiding your family, skipping church... those really will lead to "aloneness". There's so much in the Bible about strength in numbers, seeking wise counsel, not forsaking gathering together... We need other Christians, for counsel, for fellowship, for perspective. I'm sorry, but online is just not the same as in real life. Online you only see the side of people that they want to show. You need living, breathing friends and relationships. And if you're just "not feeling" your church, not growing, not experiencing God there and being edified in your relationships there, Maybe That's Not The Church For You. But you are part of The Body, and you fit in the body... somewhere. God is able to show you where.

    Love you. Wish I was there to give you a hug.

  4. Thanks for the comments, everyone!

    I do want to clarify about the church thing though. It isn't the act of going to church, and it isn't our specific church, it is just what you hear at church in general. I don't know how to explain it.

    I guess I could describe it as the American doctrine of 'me'. God wants to help ME. God wants to bless ME. Lets sing about how much God loves ME. I think it has helped me get to the point of wondering why on earth God isn't answering my prayers...isn't it all about ME?!

    Know what I mean?

    So it isn't really that I'm specifically against my church or whatever, actually as far as churches go mine is pretty good about this. It's just that I want to see the Bible and God without the filter of American Christianity.

  5. Have you read "Christless Christianity"? It deals with a lot of what you said in that last comment.

    We have been here five years and are still looking for our church home. There is no one church (here) that doesn't have multiple serious issues for us. With the one we attended the last two years, it's closest to our doctrinal beliefs and values for a worship service (no flash, simplicity, hymns included, liturgy, communion taken seriously and often), but it's DULL, doesn't preach the gospel (preaches the denomination a lot more), and feels graceless, and the pastor has a hard time putting together a coherent message.

    Now we're visiting a closer, local church, not our denomination. It's larger -- so we could be in a small group, and theoretically there might be better chance at finding likeminded folks there (not identical to us, but thoughtful, reflective people). But it's got some of the happy-mask feel, a little more flash (they have LOGOS for the sermon series -- yuck), and they have communion WHEN THEY REMEMBER TO. Oy. But yet we feel really strongly that church is not optional... it's just really super hard to figure out which church we can best tolerate / work with.

    I have to say this Christian thing IS about me. Partly. It's not in the Joel Osteen way, where God is there to prosper me and meet my every whim and be my cheerleader. It's about me because God created me, knows I have a sin problem, has dealt with that problem, and has more work to do in me and more love to lavish on me. If it was only about God, there'd be no need to create us, and no point in Jesus coming to earth.

    It is hard to find churches that don't err on one side or the other -- I don't want a Jesus-is-my-boyfriend church, but I don't want an austere God-thinks-I-barely-exist church either.

    It is about the big story -- God of the universe, transcendent, who reached down to involve even me in his story. It is about relationship -- including both persons in the relationship -- and about community.

    A medical thought. I recently tried going off my SSRI. I had a LOT more intense anger... I will try again later, tapering off more slowly. But my point is that with the meds, I still have a lot of the same issues, but they are rather less dark and less intense, and I can think more clearly and process them more effectively.

  6. "Avoiding another outing with my family tonight. Feeling very alone."

    This struck a nerve on second reading especially.

    If it was me, what would go with that statement is something like this: "I am feeling alone and undeserving and awkward and therefore I must be and do what I am feeling so that everything is in synch."

    And one of the things in DBT that I wrestled with is the idea of not acting according to feelings. Really! I thought that the idea was dangerously close to inauthenticity, hypocrisy, two-faced-ness, and self-betrayal. And what made it make sense is the difference between acting according to feelings, and acknowledging feelings. It sounds ridiculously simple when I write it, but, well, it helped me. It's possible to truly feel my feelings, validate / vindicate the aspects of my self that are voicing those feelings, AND still choose to act wisely instead.

    Anyway... hugs and continued non-shocked-ness and liking-you-ness.

  7. I just realized there were several more comments here! Oops! I felt like I needed to address the online thing - I wasn't trying to suggest you leave your church and only "attend" online. I, too, believe that we should be in fellowship with other believers and come together for worship. (I do want to say though that our church online is literally a church where believers are coming together just as we are here. They are able to communicate with each other and share things, chat with others, talk to the pastor, share prayer requests, etc. - just in an online format. It can be anonymous but doesn't have to be.)

    Anyway, my reasoning for suggesting that was just to be able step back and regroup but not lose the teaching that we all need. Plus, after reading a little more of where you're coming from, I think my pastor's teaching would be very helpful and beneficial to you. He has called out (not by name but called them out nonetheless) other pastors who have preached in the ways your talking about and said how dangerous it is. He is so Biblically sound and so passionate for teaching God's word that it sometimes just amazes me. Anyway, just wanted to share my reasons for suggesting it. :)