Thin Ice

All three cats are sleeping on my bed right now. It's kind of funny... especially since I have never seen George on my bed before, much less asleep on my bed.

I almost lost it today.

I knew I shouldn't have gone to church. But I wanted to see my friends. So, I did.

"Happy Sabbath!" *smile*
"So good to see you! Yes, I'm so glad to be home." *smile*
"Good morning!" *smile*

Good enough. That's common. But I knew that today was the day I approached the jewelry nazi and asked for a "date" this week to discuss "something". It's that incident that pained me so deeply. We need to discuss it.

"Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift." Matthew 5:23, 24

Apparently, relationships are more valuable to God than gifts, whatever those might be. Anyway, we need to get that squared away before it comes back to bite me later on.

I found out about the job thing. It's finances. They hope to bring in another Bible worker at some point, but it'll be a while, for the same reasons. Hopefully, by then I'll be far away, so I won't have to play the inevitable comparison game... or feel the sting of my failure all over again.

Anyway, I went to church. That was great. I love church. But I've really been...frustrated?... lately. Spending time with God in the morning seems to make no impact on my day one way or the other. Whether I skip it or not, things just... go on as normal. But then when I do, I feel better in that "I did what I was supposed to" glow that I used to get when I would go door to door. Just another thing on the checklist. I resent devotional time because it's what Christians are supposed to do. I hate doing what I'm supposed to do.

In addition, all sorts of funky emotions were stirred up by my visit home. You remember my utter shock and dismay to find that I am, in fact, the same person? Yeah. So I've been rather confused and frazzled lately.

So then the message today was the story of a girl, Alice, who was the perfect little Christian all her life. Her family was great, she loved God, etc. etc. She gets to be about my age, and she has to take care of her Alzheimer's grandfather all weekend. Long story short, he wears her patience thin to the point that she snaps and gets really upset and angry, and takes it out verbally on her grandfather. They are both shocked, especially Alice, and she realizes that this is truly who she is way down deep. This is an aspect of herself that she's never expressed before, but stuffed away. So she runs to her room in tears, confesses and asks for forgiveness, and pleads that the Lord will deliver her from who she finds herself to truly be. A few minutes later, this peace comes over her, and *boom*, she's delivered. She's changed. She's no longer living the form of godliness, but she's living the power thereof.

So then the speaker goes on to bring us to 1 John 5:18, which says, "We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him."

And then something else about how, when we're born of God/born again, we're not the same people anymore.

Well, I guess that means I'm screwed. I must not really be born of God (i.e. born again) then. I guess I'm not Christian after all. I'm still the same person. So then what's the point? What's the point of fighting anymore? I mean, that girl was delivered in an instant. Why am I going through this long, drawn out process? Am I not doing something right? Is my journey not legitimate? Has this all been a lie?

It was kinda all downhill from there. I spent the rest of the sermon focusing on not crying. I think I understand what they were trying to say-- it's like, you're connected to God, in His protective bubble. In order to sin, you have to purposely step outside that protective bubble. It doesn't just "happen". But my heart was already run through, and had not the strength to search for whatever hope was in there. I almost got up and left so many times, but the infernal "What will people think?" kept me in my pew. Besides, that's just one step closer to never coming back.

I managed to smile on the way out, and even hold a conversation with someone who I should have been able to open up to. I didn't trust myself to talk about this, though, because, truthfully, I don't understand it. It's like I'm back to square one, all over again. WILL I NEVER BE ABLE TO MOVE BEYOND THIS POINT?! I'll get a few steps into the path, and then look around to find myself back at the trailhead once more.

So I held it in until I got into the car. Those same crazy self-destructive urges swept over me again, and the blackness shuddered and lurched through my being. I cried the entire half-hour home... not just tears, but wails. I sounded like an infant. I also screamed. I raged. I pounded the wheel and cussed. I looked into the emptiness inside me and grieved the pain and blackness that stared back. I wanted to go eighty mph, but I knew that I don't have the money for a ticket.

"Sorry, officer.. I didn't mean to speed, but I'm horribly depressed and raging at God. Can you let me off just this once?"

Yeah. Right.

I came incredibly close to packing a suitcase, taking all my money, and driving down to Yuma. I could be gone by the time the family gets back. No one to stop me. But what would that do to them? And besides.. the fear of running out of money always hangs over my head. If I spend it now... how will I ever go to school? Can I really live on $700 until I get a summer job? Perhaps...

I thought about calling someone... but how do I articulate the intense agony that has seized me?

So on the hike up the driveway, I came to one conclusion: God exists. The natural world is too intricate, even in its degradation, to have occurred spontaneously. I just can't buy that.

So, I believe that God exists. I'm not sure what else I believe right now.

I really just want a hug... someone soft to cry on. Juneaux gave me a nice hug earlier, though.

I over-ate again.

I even thought about running off with someone from my old groups... but no one from SOULS is that dumb, and I don't want to go back to C, and B is married now.

So, anyway, here I am. A black hole.

At least they don't ask me to preach anymore.

My mind is skating on thin ice... it's times like this that I half-heartedly contemplate suicide. Maybe I could... Nah. I like life too much.

It's times like this that I seriously consider escapism.

I'm glad the family is coming back tonight. I need someone around to keep me from doing anything stupid.

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