I sit back and ask myself, “How can I hate the very thing I once loved?”
Faith, Christianity, and God were once a vibrant part of my life. I was the kid who would start every morning before school in the bathroom praying at home.
I preached so often and loved every bit of it. Now all of that has changed or shifted just a tad.
The more conversations I have with people the more I realize how my views around faith have been torn up into shreds.
I love God. I really do love God.
However, I do not love the church. I have slightly given up on the church.
It is hard to reconcile the trauma that the church continues to give people.
I struggle at letting go.
I think I might have placed too many expectations on human people. Maybe I was too busy looking for them to fill a role that was impossible to fill.
I wish there was a space…A room… A crowd… A home…
For people to ask those hard questions and come to church as their true selves. I wish that people could come to church and feel safe and loved. I know it is a lot to ask for but is it impossible?
Is it impossible to hope for God to live and exist in so many various ways? For God to show up in real time and real space through human faces?
I want that church.
The church that allows me to thrive and doubt God if needed. The church that allows me to exist in fear sometimes and admit the flaws of my human condition without shame.
I need that church.
A church that looks like the handprint of God that reaches into the cosmos, exists in the chaos and chooses to love.
I know I am probably asking for a lot.
I guess I am asking for a church that does not exist now and still has the possibility to come. I guess we sit in church on Sunday mornings reaching for that world. Yet, it is hard to imagine.
People never teach you how to love the very thing you once loved. Every once in awhile I ask myself whether loving it again is necessary. I ask myself whether loving the church again should be a priority. Maybe I should let go or let it go. Maybe I should allow it to walk out my life and see if it will return again.
I wish pastors, ministers, and church leaders would talk more about that.
I wish they would focus less on my soul salvation and more on how my soul is actually doing. I wish they preached less about how God is going to bless me and more about how life can be disappointing.
I wish, Lord knows I wish, that we would focus less on the dos and don’ts and more on how we treat each other as God’s creation.
I get it that love letters are no longer sufficient. We are cussing and fighting now. You yell at me and I yell back at you. We both are torn. We both are learning how to exist in a world that is constantly changing. I changed but you refused to look different.
You laughed at my pain and said it was my fault. You picked at my wounds and said that God would heal them. You promised me redemption but I entered your doors every Sunday and left feeling less redeemable.
I know I have a lot of words for you. We could write a book about our love affair. We both have entangled so many different emotions together. Emotions that have left us confused, hurt, and mad. Angry…Torn…Bruised…Will we ever speak again?
I hope we can speak again.
I left but you keep showing up in my dreams.
I hope we can see each other again.
I know my love for you will grow again from the place that I used to love you.
My name is Tyrek Corry and I am a 2018 graduate in the Master of Divinity program at Duke Divinity School and the Master of Social Work program at UNC-Chapel Hill. I am from Gaffney, SC but have lived the last four years of my life in Durham, NC. My work focuses on the intersection of faith, race, education, and being a free black boy in America.
Up next, Put Me to Sleep, Doctor.
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