Trusting in Our Higher Will

by Melody Jean

A few weeks ago I went to mass at a catholic church for the first time in 25 years. When I say the first time, I mean the first time where it was my choice to go. There were no obligations attached. I wasn’t attending to celebrate a friend’s wedding, stand beside my nieces at their baptisms and communions, or for any other religious marker on someone’s journey to becoming a catholic. I was going well for me, for just MJ.

As we all get sometimes, I was jumbled-up inside with thoughts and feelings. I can only guess that they stemmed from the last three years of my life which were filled with uncertainty (i.e. where I lived, relationships with significant others, my personal health and that of loved ones, starting a new job, among others). Now, don’t get me wrong. This feeling I had, or have, or hone, is not debilitating, or life altering in anyway. It doesn’t affect my ability to handle the priorities in my life. Quite the contrary; I’m productive and responsible. It’s just how we all get sometimes, when everything gets to be too much because we’re human. I suspect those reading this post get “it.” What I’m saying. It’s that place inside that feels gross at times and you hope to fill with love and light.  Yet, instead, it feels like you want to throw-up. Do you know that place? I bet you do.

I truly believe with me, the build-up was a compilation of old and new incidences. The new events were catching-up before I could shed the old ones. It’s been a fast-paced and trying time, in some right, these last three years since I left NYC for PA. I don’t regret the move; it’s just seemingly ironic that everything got much more chaotic in my life after I left, when at that time, in 2009, I was looking for something easier. I wanted to escape the rat-race called NYC. Where I live now is technically the fifth city that I have resided in the past 15 years and I’m only 36. But by comparison, this is a much smaller, more manageable city than NYC will ever be.

So this overspill, of old and new, if you will, of the last several years was beginning to creep into my every day consciousness, making waves, which I thought only I could see. Yet, perhaps those closest to me could as well. So a few weeks ago, when I had the epiphany or ‘calling’ for an immediate remedy to find peace and serenity, it was because I was seeking some semblance of normalcy. And when I looked around and inside of me, I couldn’t find any.

Losing my Religion

I’ll provide you with some history that may help to put this in perspective. For one reason or another I’ve visited synagogues, Kabbalah centers, listened to Buddhist monks speak, attended meditations, been privy to almost every “type” of church, and been a part of many other spiritual gatherings and places of worship. It’s the seeker in me. I love to entertain all religions and spiritual entities. Yet, I was seeking peace in a moment when I was losing sight. I usually connect with my higher Will on my own, in that I don’t attend services or participate in a religious group, although I think religion is beautiful; all religions. They have a commonality, they all believe in something greater. It’s called faith. So when I had the overwhelming feeling to be surrounded by the light and I couldn’t get there on my own, the idea sprung forth to go to a place of worship. The place I ‘know’ is the Catholic Church. It is the faith that my parents chose to raise me and my sister.

My dad was brought-up Jewish, my mother catholic, and together they decided that the most important thing for me and my sister is that we believe in God, and have faith in something greater. Organized religions help to put these two aspects in a framework, especially for children. So catholic it would be. To date I have gone through all of the church’s sacraments or rituals, well that is, except for marriage and death. It’s given that I will die and perhaps someday I’ll marry. Yet, I’m uncertain of where the “ceremony” will unfold. Before a church alter? Standing in front of a justice of the peace? Or will it be in a synagogue? It really depends on who I take that step with, I guess. To me it doesn’t matter because at all of those places I will be before God because thankfully he is everywhere. Too I believe he doesn’t discriminate. I just hope that when the person comes along, that it’s truly the right person. If it is then I will celebrate and officiate that love anywhere. I suspect I won’t need to put a name or a place to it when I find it.

In looking back at my “religious” upbringing I actually didn’t even know that my dad was raised Jewish until I was perhaps eight years old. When I learned this, I just thought how great it would be to celebrate both Hanukah and Christmas for the gifts of course … toys, candy and the like. But alas, when I offered this up to my parents as an option the answer was no. It would be too confusing to celebrate both. I suspect however it also had to do with that we didn’t need more “presents.”

My sister and I were told that once confirmed we could choose if we want to attend church any longer. I chose not to at the ripe old age of 14 and never went back. Of course, like I said, I attend for special occasions with friends and other reasons, but never for me. And certainly not by myself.

That day a few weeks back, when I was seeking normalcy and the light, I remembered how peaceful church can be when it’s empty and the candles are lit. It was beckoning me. So one Sunday morning I went to visit my old friend … the catholic church.

Trust in God

The sermon that day was to trust in God. Wow, I thought. Uncanny? Perhaps this is what I needed to hear; and hear I did. I actually cried. I thought is it really that easy? If I trust that he will take care of me, then I will be okay? I remember thinking, heck, it’s worth a try.  Because where I sit now is too uncertain, lonely, and sometimes frightening. So from that day forth I have been trying to turn all of my worries over to my higher Will. Trusting it will carry me, even when I’m doubtful. There is a place deep down where I know this to be truth.  I can be certain that it will all be okay in the end, because it has to be. It will be “okay” because it will be the way it’s supposed to be.

Two weeks later I tried to go back to church. It wasn’t the same. I saw what I usually saw when I go to organized places of worship … noise, people inattentive, and the sermon was preaching something that unsettled me. So I left. I likely won’t go back any time soon, if ever. Well that is I won’t go back just for me. The day a few weeks ago when I felt an overwhelming sense to go, I did. I believe I got the message I was intended to receive: trust in your higher Will. And trust I will.

 

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