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No Church Denomination For Me: I Stand Spiritually Free From That Type of Decree

Updated on July 21, 2016
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The Book of Missy; Introduction

© 2016 Missy Smith

I don’t want to go to church. I feel no solace there. It’s as simple as that. However, to some it may be quite shocking to hear me come out and say it just like that. I could almost hear the gasps of the readers as I typed it. Right from the first line, I’m sure accusations will fly off in some very devout Christians heads as they read it. I don’t mind that. I can even understand it. As I know some really enjoy the feeling of unity with others and what a church family brings to their lives. I, however, do not feel that way, so I guess this is a good time as any to explain why.



The Book of Missy; Chapter 1- Explanations

At this point, without going into the sad way I grew up, I will just state my introverted personality type has made me a victim to some cruel and unloving environments. In spite of that, even knowing how I suffered from some treatment that no one should ever have to endure; I now, at this age, can forgive the ones who put me through a living hell. In a weird way, I can understand their frustration with me. I was different, and even though I fought through being unusual and learned later in life to interact with others a little more, the stigma of knowing who I was and the hate I had when I had to be ashamed of who I was eventually brought me to this person I am today. I finally could not fight me anymore, and so I closed all the doors to others' expectations.


Now, how do I relate this to my initial reason for starting this hub? Well, some of those doors that shut behind me were of the churches I had attended through the years up until my spiritual awakening, if you will. Why did I single out my dislike of church? It is easy for me, myself, to understand now, and I would imagine some others who will read this and relate to my reasons will comprehend also. However, like many things I write through personal experience, I’m sure some will be unable to get it. I will give it my best shot, and whoever cares to judge me for it after, go ahead, but be warned scornful negativity will not change my mind. That shy person who let others dictate what’s right and wrong for me, has been gone for years now. I’m totally set within my thoughts and attitude of life and how I thrive in this world today. And I have to say, it was long overdue.

Goodbye, I've Lost Hope Here...

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The Book of Missy; Chapter 2- Judgements

God is not there under that steeple in my experience. Gasps again!! He isn’t in a place where people tell you that you have to do this and that and be this way or that way, or you will be damned to hell’s fury. I cannot fathom how our God could say these things, and feel such ways. Even so, this is what I have witnessed many faithful church goers to say. After all, he sent his only son to die for our sins in such a harsh way. So, to forbid others for being a certain way never made much sense to me. But hey, I’m sure it’s just me, right? Some of these lovely Christians who judge on race, and opposite religion, are surely going to be at those pearly gates first, don't you think? (rolling my eyes)


The church and the people in it, is supposed to bring peace an acceptance to the ones who come to worship, and don’t get me wrong, that is wonderful if that has happened for you. I think it does just that for some. It does that for my mother and father who have regularly gone to the same church for probably thirty years now. However, it does not do the alike thing for me. Instead, I feel a bit claustrophobic in the walls of these churches I have tried so hard to fit into in our small town. I never figured out how to fit in anywhere to be honest, and as I did carry hopes for many years that it would make me feel a part of something special, as I too love God and wanted a relationship with him, it rather seemed to push me further away from him.


I was one that wasn’t welcomed with open arms, so how could anyone expect me to come to any other conclusion than to thrive spiritually on my own. At first, I could not understand how I could feel this way, until one day, I just came to understand ME. In saying that, I believe it should be plainly seen that I do not judge or hold faults with anyone, I simply state my reasons for my own way of thinking and my personal life through the way it has played out for me. Some will relate, and others will not. I get that, so no judgements upon me for the way I feel or think will be necessary. Thank you!

The Book of Missy; Chapter 3- Acceptance

And here is where I admit; I don’t want to be a Christian! I’m not supposed to be a Christian, but don’t have a heart attack, I know God does not want me to be a Christian either. He did not mean for me to go to church and search him out with others. No, he wanted me to search for him on my own, and in my private way. I understood now that he silenced me for so long in order for me to do this. I lived in my own world for a prolonged time in order to realize that, and he even allowed me to suffer through some very hurtful times in my life, so I would search out and realize his intentions for me.


It took years; I will not lie. For a long time, I kept trying on and off through the years to go to church and be a part of a church family. After all, I did feel I wanted that. I was taught to want that. So, I wanted to feel a part of something like everyone else. I wanted to feel it was a safe haven for me where God would lift me up and make me feel special too. However, by the time I was in my early thirties and had gone through several bad relationships and came to visit once more for the hopes of guidance; actually, finally making my way up to the front to pray and get saved then baptized, I continued to pretend that it was all good, and again hating myself for lying. So, I decided to stop! I haven’t looked back since, and I certainly do not feel guilty. I have accepted who I am and what was not meant to be for me. That is that!

A Few Images of What I Consider Church

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The Book of Missy; Chapter 4- Defiance

I did not give up on God or myself outside of those doors. I defied those who told me I was going to be punished for staying away. The ones that even told me God would be the one to punish me. I actually got strong enough to even laugh to myself as they spoke those silly words. See, I made my relationship with God through all of this trying. I would still pray and ask him into my heart. Not in the church, but as I lay in bed at night looking out the windows and up at the stars. I would talk to him as I sat on the beach watching the ocean waves crash and feel the freedom of the wind in my hair. I heard him talk back to me loud and clear when I asked questions. It took me a while to hear him clearly, because so many other voices were blocking it, but I never gave up that I would.



I found myself. I found my own voice of truth, and I found the God that loved me for me. He is with me as I write this out. He still guides me through on those days that I feel almost ready to give up from the fight of life. He tells me I’m what he made me to be; a visionary with a heart that can see through the prejudices and hate that others carry. He did not make me Christian, Catholic, or Episcopalian. He instead made me to understand that everyone is different, but in a beautiful way. He made me curious in a world that would rather blame than take the time to understand those differences, and be smart enough to love one another for individuality.

The Book of Missy; Conclusion

I believe we are all here to learn about one another. If you truly believe in a God, no matter if he is called God, Allah, or even praised through his Mother Mary, it is for us alone to understand our personal relationship with him. There are too many people in this world to think God made us to worship in an identical way. We are all part of this great big world full of many cultures; therefore, how can we worship him in the same way? It’s a question we all must ponder and make a peace with.


For instance, like in my situation, an outcast of my own culture, I know I’m like this for a purpose. I am an explorer of hope, a believer of faith and fate. That is who I am. I am open-minded and diverse with how I think and believe, and I want to stay that way. I am honest to a fault, and I will fight with words and opinions of the wrongs I see take place here, and I will not feel apologetic for it. I feel driven by my relationship with my God to do so. I believe he has very clearly painted the picture of my path. I AM FREE.

This Was Awesome! the Best Explanation I Have Ever Heard. Please Watch!

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Speak To Freedom

© 2016 Missy Smith

A quietness burns in me,

keeping secrets of long

explanation...


my silent concentration,

feeding my thoughts

in notations.


How do I speak it that

which floats in limbo

in my hat?


I don’t want to mostly,

yet I need to do this,

please relax.


Too long have I lived with

innuendos stacked against

me.


You may not know me;

therefore, I will beg this

release to free me.


It’s not that I feel

compelled to tell

tales.


Nevertheless, the

whispers of judgements

are driving nails.


I desire my words

to speak for

themselves.


And in doing so,

freedom Will finally

feel a freedom felt.

All of Us Have Our Own Lifesong and The Way We Sing It

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    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 11 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Very interesting piece. A good journey. But I found myself shaking my head at your seemingly loneliness at times. I know a whole lot more Christians that do not attend church regularly than ones that do. In fact that was part of my impetus to write my series "Eric's Sunday Sermon". It is just as rewarding to swap thoughts out of church as it is within it.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 11 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for being brave, Missy, and sharing what you really feel. I have sometimes thought of writing a similar hub, but never quite sure how to approach it. I also don't think I can adequately express my thoughts and feelings in this comment section. Let's just say I can relate to almost all you wrote here. I attended church for probably 15 years of my life, did Bible study and at one church (Baptist)even trained to minister and mentor other new Christians in a one on one or home group situation. I have attended probably six different churches of various denominations. I grew up Anglican, and although many find it a rather staid and conservative denomination, I find the ministers I encountered there the most "real." I left those churches when those pastors moved on. I have found with many churches, about 1/4 of the congregation are "real" and honestly seem to be what they portray, the other 3/4 are just actors, doing or saying what they think the pastor wants to hear and look good in front of the other parishoners(only to live totally different lives outside the church walls). I seem to have an intuition or sixth sense at judging people's intentions or whether they are really honest and as they appear. I did my best to fit in, but eventually found myself having to put on an "act" as well. To me that defeated the whole purpose of church .. if I couldn't be the true me and say and do what I really believed..then what was the point. Now, I worship in my own way at home or in the way I live my life and interact with others. I believe all religions have their good and bad points, but peace, love, harmony, and acceptance should be the basis of our lives. Good poetry as always.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 11 months ago from Shelton

      a track across different grounds here, I agree with Jodah there is good and bad in all religion, sometimes when you give yourself it can go either way.. It's all about the person and how strong you feel.. this may work for some, but others like the union, the gathering, the sharing of beliefs.. it can have advantages.. nonetheless, this was a brave piece..

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      Hi Eric, thanks for stopping by and reading this hub. Yes, I would think it is just as important to talk outside of church. I hope I made it clear that I do not think going to church is all wrong. It does work for some. My parents and sister certainly feel more a part of God's world by going. However, they have made friendships there to where I could never find a way to do that. I'm an introvert. I don't blame the church totally for myself not fitting in there. My type can be hard to approach. I will say that some are cruel though. I have experienced this side of the church as well, but I'm not saying everyone does. You seem like a very nice person, Eric. I always enjoy reading your thoughts on my hubs. I will go to your page and read some of your articles soon. It seems I'm always pressed for time lately. I can't even believe I find ways to write here sometimes, but it's important for me to do so, and I do my best. Take care. :)

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      Hey Jodah, you mention having an intuition of people. I have that too I believe. It seems I'm always proven right when I have this feeling on someone or something that is going on. Of course, I'm not in the habit to voice a judgement outloud. I know that is not the thing to do, but I really relate to what you are saying. However, I guess, in a way, I have voiced it here in this article, haven't I? I think introverts have this type of trait naturally.

      So, about religion. It just depresses me really. I tried to fit into a religion as you said you did as well; however, it doesn't work for me. I couldn't find my connection with God through religion. I had to eventually accept that and realize his intentions to get to know him was on a much more personal level. I believe he wants me to get to know him through others' eyes, through making friends with different cultures and religions.

      I really enjoy making friends around the world and feeding my curiosity by asking questions. How else do you get to know someone, right? I find that everyone appreciates that I do ask and am fascinated in their lifestyles and beliefs. Then I think to myself, if the whole world just were interested in each other instead of grouping us and saying we should stay with a certain group; we would be so much more inclined to understand others and get along. I have found, for example; Muslims and Christians are similar in thought in a lot of ways. The funny thing for me when I talk to my family about this, they will say; but they worship Allah! I have to laugh, because if they just opened themselves up to knowing others, they would know that Allah is just their name for God. He's the same one we worship here.

      I'm going to be honest with you; this was an extremely hard hub to write and put together. I found myself getting frustrated because I had so much to say, but didn't know exactly the right way to put it in words in order for everyone to get where I was coming from on this subject. I still think some will get it, and some won't. I cannot be mad at that. When you talk about something like this, it will always bring with it a bit of controversy, just like my political pieces.

      I am guided by God to do so though. I feel that. I feel he wants me to be brave enough to speak about the world the way I view it. I'm not saying I'm totally correct in my views, but I would be willing to bet that there are others who will totally get what I'm saying, and will feel that connection. I also hope some religious people will find that they understand what I'm saying and will know my intentions are only good. Making connections, and understanding differences; it is what is important for all of us to try to do these days. ~Missy

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      Hey Frank, Yeah, maybe a brave piece, but I hope a relevant piece to what we need to hear in today's society. I think religion has become a problem with how we view others. I think if we are to judge all people of a certain religion, then you should really research and get to know that religion. You should get to know someone of that religion. Then, I believe, views may change that one bad seed of a certain religion does not make all terrible. There is black-hearted in every religion, that is a point I would like to make.

      This hub was based on my personal feelings on religion more than anything else. The reasons why I don't practice a certain religion anymore or try to. However, I think it all ties into what we are experiencing in the world today. I have always heard never to mix politics and religion, but isn't that what is happening today?

      I still believe in the term "to each his own," and a mutual respect for that. I think if we could get to that point and realize this is the way to view religion and differences we would get along much better with less violence. NO WALLS! lol.

      I'm not on board with any religion at this point in life, and I feel so much more freedom this way. I have freed myself to explore and know others, and I'm happy in this way.

      Thanks Frank! ~Missy

    • word55 profile image

      Word 11 months ago from Chicago

      Hi Missy, very good hub here. Sometimes, I feel the same way you do. Nothing wrong with that. God bless!

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      Thank you for understanding the way that I feel here, Word55. :)

    • ladyguitarpicker profile image

      stella vadakin 11 months ago from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619

      Hi Missy, I know and lived what you wrote. Love you, stella

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      MizBejabbers 11 months ago

      Missy, first, know that I love you. I understand what you are saying so perfectly that I could have written it myself. Although you say you have found yourself, I feel like you are still searching for what's beyond this world because I detect some anger left over from the bummer that was handed to you. I have been through all that; also I am somewhat psychic, which has resulted from my leaving the church and telling my family that I had to be me. Had I stayed, I would still be a closed off head-blind wreck.

      I did attend a metaphysical school for several years and they taught me that it was all right to feel the way I did. They helped me open up to the universe and the great beyond. I'm learning what unconditional love is, and it has nothing to do with continuing to put up with BS from a hateful family member or fellow employee. It is a love for the collective humanity as a whole. I'm still searching, so I'm not pontificating to you. I saw that you read my hub on finding my belief system, and I left you a reply there, too.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 11 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm with you, Missy! I had church doctrine shoved down my throat for the first 21 years...no more, thank you very much.

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      Hey MizBejabbers, thank you, I love you too. You have a wonderful spirit, and that's what I would wish the whole world to have. Great Spirit!

      I simply cannot accept that God would put us here to hate or disregard others unless we join a specific religion. You are right; I'm angry about how people are when it comes to their certain religion, and I'm annoyed that they outed me in what should have been my own religion with my family over and over through the years when I did try to become a part of it.

      In another way though, I'm thankful, because I did not ever feel like I fit in, so my journey to find my place started behind those doors and ended with me shutting them. I feel blessed in that way. The church and the Christian faith taught me who I was and what I did and didn't want to be. I wouldn't have wanted to waste anymore time being what I wasn't. :)

      I've consistently had to fight and argue with my family and others about why I don't attend. I always have to state why I do not go, although I'm pretty sure they know, and that I still love God, and he is fine with me being me without religion. It's an ongoing battle I suspect I will have to continue to fight til death. I just accept that now.

      I am sometimes told from others that I will have to answer for it later, and they tell me that they hope I make it into heaven. Ironically, as they tell me this, I feel confident that I will make it but am wondering the same thing to myself about them. The difference is, I will not speak those judgmental words out to them like I have had it spoken to me.

      I have to say that this experience is with the Christian faith, since that is the religion I was brought up in; more specifically Baptists. As for the other religions, I make friends from all over, and I try to get to know everyone on an individual basis no matter their religion. I have to believe there are good people in all religions. However, I just don't fit into any.

      Thanks again. Peace and Love, ~Missy

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      Thank you, Stella and Bill, I am very blessed to have found people here on HP that identify with me so well. Before I came here and met a lot of you, I wondered if I ever would find people who could relate to my thoughts.

      Thanks so much! ~Missy

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 11 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Missy.....As usual, you express yourself beautifully and as usual, I "get it" completely. However, I'd like to take a few words to clarify something for you. "Christian" is the term used for people who love Jesus Christ, have invited Him into their hearts and who attempt to be "Christ-Like" in their daily lives. So, in fact honey, you are a Christian. It's not about religion at all, nor is it about "church" (or any type of physical building) You say that you "accepted Him" as Lord & Savior years ago. That very action brought you into His flock of Christians. We can be Christians without giving ourselves any label of a Religion .....such as Baptist or Methodist, etc. "Christianity"itself is not a religion.....it is the state of grace we hold within.

      "Church-goers" are exactly that, church-goers. They can be of any one of the thousands of denominations. I do not espouse to any "religion" nor do I attend a church of any kind. I never would. Just like you, I have my own personal relationship with God and it is what is right for me.

      As for people making judgement calls or suggesting what we should or should not do? We needn't give them the time of day. We surely don't need to explain ourselves nor our personal beliefs to a single one of them. I never have and I never will. I fully understand from whence you speak Missy and respect your right to this freedom.

      Love God, our neighbors and ourselves and abide by the Golden Rule. It doesn't get much simpler. Peace, Paula

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      You are so right, Paula. I guess it is easy to get caught up and believing we don't fit the description of something when people judge us not fit. However, I know you are absolutely right, and I know I was totally right not to classify myself as a certain religion. I'm not religious. I can't sit down and read that bible front and back. I can "listen" to the stories, but I can't claim to get them when I read them, I've tried. Frankly, I don't know if half the preachers' preaching gets it either, or they are just making their own interpretations up? In that way, I see no shame in the way I view God. I see no problem in my personal relationship with him. If there is a Heaven, I'm going. See you there sweet lady!! :)

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      MizBejabbers 11 months ago

      Interesting comment, Paula. If that is so, then I'm a Christian because I am a follower of Jesus Christ the heavenly soul, not the man-made icon. However, I've had it said directly to me that "you're just not a Christian," so in the eyes of some Christians, those of us who follow Christ in our own ways are not Christians. Ain't that a kick!

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 11 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Well MzB...."If that is so"....I will only say that "It's SO for me." I am totally deaf to preachers & Bible thumpers.....Holier than Thou morons & anyone who thinks they have the one and only key to all. That's what is commonly referred to as bull$hit, IMO. No human can TELL anyone whether they are "Christian" or not. That's simply not for them to judge. Period, the end. God alone knows our hearts. That's why we are aware it is a personal relationship with Christ. It's between Him & us!

      In response to Missy's comment about preachers not "getting it" any more than others....she's correct. If they all "got it"...they wouldn't be translating and preaching to the tune of HUNDREDS of religions and denominations. Hello people? That alone should tell us loudly and clearly that our spirituality and/or connection and bond with a Heavenly Being. Creator....is fairly simple to embrace on an individual basis.

      There will ALWAYS be someone or a group of who-knows-what- ready to pounce on others in terms of their faith, lack of or spiritual journey in this world. Good for them. They can speel all they want. and I can just smile at them as I walk away.

      God forbid we become like robots, spouting Scripture 24/7, damning people to hell, insulting others for their beliefs.....mouthing some crap we don't understand and couldn't possibly believe in......Like our ever-present jaw-flapping, screeching crazy woman who leaves in excess of 62 comments in one thread....every one of them quotes and more quotes from an ancient History book filled with angry gods, murder, rape, incest, hell's fire.....and has not a single word from an independent thought. Please help us. The woman is an escapee and that's all there is to it. She can scare anyone away from anything vaguely resembling a God!! Cuckoo is the name of her game. And everyone knows to whom I refer....She's everywhere, repeating the same quotes over and over and over and calling people SATAN and devil worshippers and "accursed".....Oh she's a friggan LOON.

      If anyone you love ever reaches that depth of insanity......shoot them out of love.

      "Ain't that a kick?" I don't know, but if it feels like a kick.....ignore it!!

      Peace MzB..........Paula

    • Missy Smith profile image
      Author

      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      And I will just say to both of you ladies, MizBejabbers and Paula, I think both of you have a wisdom beyond many of us, and I am delighted to call you both friends of mine. I especially enjoy reading both of your thoughts. Neither one of you disappoints me when it comes to discussion. I love that my article can bring a healthy discussion of all opinions. I think that was what I was after here. We all should have our individual thoughts spiritually, and our private way to God after this life, whosoever your God may be. We will all get to the same place in our special way. Well, those are my feelings about it anyway.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 11 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Missy.....Beware. Don't be surprised if you get a few comments here that don't exactly agree with any of us....and who will, of course try to lead you in the direction THEY THINK YOU NEED TO BE. Hold firm, girl. If they get downright nasty....DELETE them. That's what they deserve.

    • Missy Smith profile image
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      Missy Smith 11 months ago from Florida

      Thanks Paula. :)

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