For a while, I have been pondering about my involvement with the church. I have not been the best church-goer in the recent past, but I remain convinced that I am still a Christian. Failing to go to church does not strip one of the title, does it? It's not like a job where, if you fail to turn up for months on end you are relieved of your duties and are no longer associated with the organisation - at least that's what I think.
Before, I used to go to church both out of duty and to strengthen my Christian faith. Out of duty because I knew my grandma (I always visited her on Sunday afternoons) will forever ask if I have been to church and I was always filled with guilt if I hadn't been. It's like I owed her this one thing. Good for her, for I never forgot to throw a prayer in her direction, she was one of the reasons I was in church anyway. The other reason, stength for my Chrisitan faith, was basically a translation for food for soul. It was always a good feeling to be amongst people who believe in the same thing as you. Felt like we were all there for this one and same reason, all speaking the same but different language but understanding each other alltogether. I always felt the church nourished my faith... wish I could explain that.
Today I sit in church for so many reasons, not sure which are genuine and which are far fetched. Out of duty for my late grandma? Could be. Strengthen my Chrisitan faith? Not sure if I have any faith left in me. Seek consolation, a sense of belonging? Could be, but my eyes sweep across the church and all I see are happy, healthy looking people with no worry in the world. How could I belong among them? Seek forgiveness? Yes. Maybe. But, from what? What did I do wrong? Had I known any better I, surely, would not be in this situation.
My son? Aaah, yes. I know that is one genuine reason I am here. I need God's intervention in the well being of my son. I need to know that he will be alright with and, most especially, without me. I need something done for my son, but I am not sure what. I close my eyes in prayer, but my thoughts wander elsewhere. I start imagining my baby's life without me. I start blaming myself for doing this to him, and start going through the same thing that I have put myself through in the last two weeks. No, I can't do this. I open my eyes, get up slowly and make my way out of the church.
This needs more effort. I can't just wake up one morning and head to church hoping that my mere presence will set things right, that things will go back to normal if I take myself in the middle of religion.
I stop at the door for a minute and look back into the church. "God, I know you are there. Somewhere. Please take care of my boy."