the problem with religion

10Apr12

most people, i think, struggle with wondering if there is a god at some point of their lives. that is not my problem. i believe in god, i believe what they teach in how jesus came to earth, died for sins, etc.

what i am not sure of is what he expects from me.

for the first part of my life, my parents were baptist. we attended a mini ‘mega church’ every saturay night (the church had two services, on on sat with the main being on sunday). but then in spring of 1999, they began attending a mennonite church.

everything changed.

image

via pinterest

mennonites can be considered baptists with head coverings, or amish with electricity. fundementally, the beliefs are the same. it is how they choose to live, or interpret some things in the bible, that is different. the big focus in being mennonite and amish is helping others, and trying to live like jesus.

at the age of seven, i began wearing head coverings, long dresses, etc. jeans were off limits, as well as shorts – culottes were encouraged. woman were not permitted to cut their hair, or work outside the home. i grew up being taught that a woman’s place was in the home.

image

via pinterest

slowly, my parents migrated out of that thinking. it wasn’t until late 2006 that i think they officially stopped that way of life. since then, i have struggled. i have mennonite friends who at nineteen, are engaged, wear long dresses, cook for big potluck dinners, and are so happy. i have ‘worldly’ friends who at nineteen, go through boyfriends like water, wear skin tight clothing, cook hamburger helper and ramen,and seem so unhappy. i feel like when i am around either group, i morph into a persona i created, that was created for me, at a young age. i am not sure where i belong, or where i want to belong.

i think it is more to do with my compulsive worrying about what others think of me, more than anything.

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5 Responses to “the problem with religion”

  1. 1 cyprineb

    Very interesting post! It’s amazing to learn of other people’s life stories and I really appreciate the one you shared.

    It is so tempting to say that it’s easier be told what others and God expect of you because then your plans in life can just work around that. But the reality (it seems to me) for most people, is that we start off that way when we are young but experience causes something inside us to wonder and question what we expect of ourselves. Why should we blindly accept the authority of the “answers” provided to us? These questions create the tension between different sets of expectations and then there is inner turmoil.

    The truth is we can never really know what other people, or God for that matter, expect from us. There will never be that indisputable proof. People can tell you “exactly” what they want from you or God’s law is passed down through people but you will always be left wondering, do they have a different purpose or hidden meaning behind their words. Am I really fulfilling their expectations completely?

    If the only thing you expect of yourself is to match others’ and God’s expectations, then your path in life SHOULD be simpler. I think that’s what true faith is. The problem is finding, accepting and keeping faith at that degree of perfection.

    When Adam and Eve ate from The Tree of Knowledge, I don’t think it gave them more knowledge at all, just an unending thirst for it. Maybe the journey in life isn’t to seek more answers but to find a way to stop asking questions.

    Obviously I’m not convinced by my own words…you’ve read my post(s) but just speculating.

    • Thanks for your insight. I agree that that is the way it should be, however society jumbles things up until they make little sense

  2. 3 mysteriology

    I like this post for its honesty.

    Yes, I’ve gone through a point in my life when I wondered about the existence of God and what exactly is the purpose of my existence. For me it wasn’t so much a struggle as it was a journey, without and within. I’ve always considered faith as well as my relationship with God to be very personal, and so I decided that I’d find and define my own. After walking different paths, I finally have; as you will, too 🙂

    • thank you for your words of encouragement. i am coming to a point where i agree; you cannot mold your relationship with God after anyone else’s ideas or perceptions. it is something each person needs to come to on their own.


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