One thing I have struggled with for a long time is my relationship with God. I suppose if you had to put a label on it, I would be a Christian, but I’m growing increasingly frustrated with the connotations of that label. Mostly because I’m not some crazed, hell fire and brimstone, the world’s going to hell in a hand basket kind of person. I like to think I’m an open minded, loving person; I believe most people would agree.
I think mostly why I’ve struggled with religion and faith and God is because it’s all so convoluted. It’s pulled apart and taped back together to fit what works for a certain group of people. I try to follow Jesus’ example of life. He got angry, he was tempted and he became frustrated with those around him. The profound difference between him and other people was his reaction and the fact that he never stopped loving everyone. I wonder if that’s something I can do. I’ve been told my whole life that you don’t have to like everyone, you just have to love them. I don’t really get that. I never have and I think that’s the shadow that’s always casting itself over my faith. I understand it in a sense of say, family. I always love my family even when they do stupid things that piss me off. But at the moment they hurt me or make me angry I don’t like them very much. The love doesn’t go away, I just don’t like them. But I can’t liken that to total strangers. And the fact is, there are some people I don’t want to love. Does that make me evil or human? That’s always something I wonder about too.
My diary from High School is riddled with my bi-polar relationship with God. My ups and downs are excruciating to read. I see it now and I wonder how I could have been so inconsistent. One entry is rife with repentance and a new found love for a God, a stronger faith, or so it seems. The next is about a “fucking cool party” where I got “totally fucked up.” The next will relay how I repented in church the following day and repeat the phrases of repentance and the new found discipline I would exercise. It’s embarrassing to read really. What’s more embarrassing is I know how little of that has actually changed.
I’ve heard that most people’s faith goes through similar peaks and valleys, but you see it so seldom. You see the two extremes all the time. The person who’s life is perfect all the time. Their relationship with God has always been wonderful and easy. And the person’s whose life is compeletly devoid of God or any faith in anything. Maybe if the “perfect people” were honest about their own struggles more often I’d be more apt to believe I’m a good person with bad days and not just a bad person. But that feeling isn’t their fault. Just because things appear to be fabulously wonderful for them doesn’t mean it is. It’s me judging by appearances, not bothering to notice the underlying signals, or make the effort to really get to know these “perfect people.” Therein lies the problem and it’s all mine.