For this post, I was inspired by Emma. I so much admire the way she talks about herself and her faith to God in her blog. She made me thinking why I have such a hard time to express my relationship to God. To be honest I fear to be called a freak for believing in God. I am not sure why I care. It makes me think my faith is not very strong if I can't even stand by God, if I feel embrassed to admit I like God. But on the other hand I love talking about God ( I keep saying "God" because I am trying to not picture God as male or female) and religion if I am sure I have found a like minded soul. So today I stand up and just dare to talk, no matter who listens:
God and me, we have a funny relationship. I am not sure what to call it. I could call myself a protestant but what does that say about God and me? I work for a catholic NGO, the Caritas, but what does that tell you? I am a big fan of the ecumenical movement but somehow the combination of catholic and protestant religion is not what it's all about for me, it is not where it should stop. Maybe I could say I don't believe in religion, I believe in God. To me a religion is just one way to live my life with God, never the only possible way. I can find God in a mosque, as well as in a forest and sometimes I can't find God in a church or at home, you never know...
Today my employee Caritas invited us on a one day pilgrimage and I happily joined in. My, what an event it was! A bus toke us to the outskirts of the city from where we walked a few miles towards a huge old monastery. There was singing and praying on the way there and a long service at the monastery. Lots and lots of singing, a lot of other rather catholic stuff I don't know how to name it. I enjoyed it immensly, despite the big crowd. We were more than 2000 people, which was rather daunting to me at first. But being part of 2000 people, singing and praying together is a wonderful experience and God was near by and he didn't mind me being a protestant I am sure... Another good thing was to stand next to my big boss, praying and singing with him, exchanging the "peace be with you".
To me God is a divine power. I feel it is easier to imagine God abstract than figurative. Jesus is another issue here. He is so very tangible but that makes it even harder for me to understand him. So hard to understand how he can be Gods son. I am sure he wouldn't have wanted to seperate religions the way he does, in those who believe in him and those who don't. So very sad it went that way, isn't it?
Since I am a mother I feel much closer to Mary though. In the monastery today there was a sculpture of Mary with her dead son on her lap. It was created during the years of the black death in Europe. It made me cry. I could feel her pain. Next to me sat my friend who just lost her baby a few weeks ago in the 4th month of pregnancy. She is heartbroken not just by that death but by what God did to her. She stopped going to church, she only came today because she had signed up for it before it happend. And she wanted to give it a chance. And somehow, seeing Marys pain helped her to understand God didn't want her baby to die, God is crying with her and wants to comfort her. I think today she toke Gods hand again.
Of course, this is not all there is to say about God and me. I hope to continue my spiritual journey and thoughts here with you from time to time.