I was on the phone with a close friend when she revealed that in college she thought I didn’t believe in God. After hearing this I presumed she was merely joshing, but she reiterated that indeed she was not. I phoned another friend with this uncomfortable new information and she concurred that she too shared the same sentiments.
Then in the same respect they dismissed the conversation in jest as if it didn’t matter.
Interestingly enough I feel as though situations such as this are deemed as “the story of my life”. If I share presumptuous comments I am often scolded and condemned or made a fool. Forced to apologize to those whom I have offended, however such matters are never shown to me when shown great offense.
I wish my friends understood the journey that I had to embark on in order to find my way back to religion.
I live in Texas. The end. It’s self explanatory that I live in a society of small minds, prudence and hypocrisy. Those who had been deemed as born again Christians, to me, were poor representations of what I saw as “Christ-like”. Days and nights I prayed to God to lead me to something that exemplified my spirit. I read texts and studied thoroughly through the old and New Testament to become more familiar and open minded to the written word. The more I studied, the more I became disgusted and empty by what the real world offered me. Contradictions. Those who partied and drank on Saturday and played gospel on their way to church on Sunday to end those values by 12:30 pm benediction. Those who were baptized at an early age but stole from others, engaged in drugs and ill suited lifestyles. Yet they all shared one common thread…they were Christian.
The more I shared my anger to my friends, the more they disowned me, talked down to me and pushed me a way. Not that I did everything right or respected their life decisions entirely, but I always forgave and always apologized to others assuming that they knew my heart. Now I know some did not. Many a night I would cry to my brother, a devout Muslim, how I struggled with my search for religious complacency. Due to the fact that he followed his own path, he understood me well and spent many countless nights consoling my troubled mind.
I read and researched a multitude of religions and spiritual practices and it wasn’t until my studies in Buddhism, that I saw Christianity for what it truly is.
The way that the Buddhist monks spoke of Christ soothed my soul. They wrote of compassion and love that was beyond anything that I had seen or experienced in my own life. I yearned to experience such a spirit in a religion because I felt I had a strong connection to God and I love Christ and the idea and essence of him. In 2005 I gave my life to Christ wholeheartedly and was baptized. My friends were all there in support. I of course thought they were there with me understanding that I had chosen a religious denomination, not that I had moved from atheism to Christianity. Although, I still have to deal with people that can’t wrap their head around the fact that my boyfriend is Catholic and not Baptist and believe that Catholicism is non-Christian. So I am not surprised that my friends would define my non-denomination as atheism.
I say all this to say, should I be thankful to have friends that have accepted my evolutionary changes no matter what they have presumed them to be, or should I be insulted that they never knew my true heart all his time. What is a true friend, if they know not of your heart?
The 7 cardinal rules of life remind me to:
Make peace with my past.
What other people think of me is not my business.
Time heals almost everything.
Stop thinking to much.
Yet the yogi in me that is working through her anger problems admits that her friends opinions have hurt her. She can forgive in time but it has made her look at those around her in a new light.