Long story, but I'll try to be short...
So my DD is 3. Since November I've had her at my mom's house (I'm not allowed to stay there, even overnight because it's really her boyfriend's house- that's a whole other story!) while I'm at the end of this pregnancy and getting back up on my feet. So I go over there every other day, we do dinner, play time, and I bathe her and tuck her into bed, whole 9 yards since she's always been mommy's little princess).
Well, from last March up until Sept/ Oct. we belonged to an awesome church down in Oklahoma where I was living. A few nights ago I had a dream that I found a church here that I liked, and two days ago, OUT OF THE BLUE!, she comes up to me from playing with her toys, running around the table singing "You can't catch me!" and generally being adorable, and says to me, "Mommy I want to go to church with you". I felt so, so bad. These past few months have been pretty difficult and I've felt like a terrible person, but our church days were our best days! In the past month though, I've really felt the need to go back to church. There's that pull there that won't go away.
Some days I just feel like a bad Christian because of everything I've done and said in my life, even though I have changed a lot since having my DD. She made me want to be a better person. But I don't even have a Bible anymore! I've moved so many times it's not even funny.
I guess I just need some prayers. There's a few churches around here that I'd like to try and attend a few services but I don't know what's holding me back! I think it's because when I was a teenager, a church we attended for years was so clique like and judgemental it turned me off for years after that. And now I'm a single, pregnant mother? I guess I'm afraid of being judged again.
Thanks for reading.
Your daughter sounds adorable.
There is a poem with a line that says "Church is not a museum for good people. Its a hospital for the broken." It comes from Mark 2:17 where Jesus says "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners." Christ does not tell us to fix ourselves up before we can come to Him. He says "come as you are" and He will transform you from right where you are at. Every single person sitting in church needs Him just as much as you do.
I can be tough finding a church that preaches the truth about sin, while still offering true grace. But they are out there! You want a church that recognizes sin, because that is how we can discern right from wrong. But there is a difference between judgement and judgementalism. Judgement says "This is sin." Judgmentalism says "You can't have grace." The truth is EVERYONE has sinned, EVERYONE needs and is freely offered grace.
I'm tired and feel like I'm rambling. My point is that you do not have to be worthy to go to church. Churches would be empty if that were the requirement. God loves you. He is drawing you to Himself. He has His hand out offering you grace and forgiveness and love. I'm praying you find a church that will open their arms to you just like Jesus is. They are out there. I know, I am a part of one. But just remember, churches are full of sinners still... no church is perfect because people are not perfect. So remember to offer some grace to people who may be judgmental toward you. That may be the sin they are dealing with, although it is not as obvious as some other ones. They need forgiveness, too. On the whole though, a church should welcome you and your babies with no reservation. God will give you the courage and strength you need to start the search and walk through those doors. Finding a great church home is so refreshing and encouraging! We weren't meant to walk alone in life, we were meant to fellowship with other believers, and encourage and support each other. It makes a huge difference.
BTW - Congratulations on your pregnancy! Every baby is a blessing.
~ Polly ~ Married to my perfect match!Loving my growing family! M/C - 4/5/10
Thank you for that amazing quote! I've felt very lost and guilty about not going, but I know that when I find that right for me church again, they'll accept me for me. I'm actually getting a little excited about it (even though I'm not going anywhere I don't absolutely need to right now, because my belly's the size of a butterball turkey!), because there are at least 4 that I want to visit, because I know people that go and I know how they are and would be comfortable, but I've also got a few that I wouldn't mind going to and being virtually unknown.
I really am about to write that down in my journal though, I need to remember that. My sister told me a few weeks ago that it didn't seem like I could forgive myself for getting into these situations. I was shocked, because she was right. So I've been praying about it nightly, and trying to forgive myself for things like taking a break from college, (it's not going to be hard to get back into it, I do it all online), and just going with the flow right now.
Polly gave you some great advice. It is so true that every church is full of sinners. Our old preacher used to talk about how we all struggle with sin. I had similar feelings of really feeling a pull to go to church. In the past it had been DH pushing to go, and I had been resistant, but when I felt that pull, we visited a few until we found the one that was just the right fit. The same time I got this pull to go to church, I felt the same thing about reading the Bible. I went to Walmart and bought a Bible Amazon has the ESV version for free for a Kindle. You dont need a Kindle; you can download a Kindle app for your computer, so you could get a Bible for free
I'll keep you in my prayers.
That is AWESOME!! Thanks for letting me know that!! And thank you for the prayers Definitely need them this week. But that's another story..