Once a month my mom hosts themed family dinners. She puts a lot of thought into these evenings so I try to make sure I make an appearance. We don’t have much family in the area so it’s always a small gathering. Typically, these are the nights that my dad brings up the church topic but this time my grandma brought it up first and it went something like this….
Grandma: “Do you go with your mom and dad on Friday nights to Church?”
*Anxious about this being brought up again but decides to answer*
Me: “No, I don’t”
Grandma: “Oh okay, well I was wondering if…”
*I start sweating inside a little bit because every time my dad starts out a conversation like this it turns into a church invite*
…If you’d like to go to the Scandinavian society with us sometime. We meet on Friday nights and it’s a potluck then there’s a program. Sometimes they have really interesting speakers!”
Me: “Uh sure, thanks for the invite.”
A potluck and a speaker? That kind of sounds like church summed up but I will happily spend an evening learning about my heritage and meeting new people. I think that this was one of the first times that the topic of church was approached and I didn’t feel any sort of judgment and was respected for that decision. I wasn’t harassed, invited to their church, or got any old fashion Christian shame. This brief little conversation meant more than I think grandma will ever realize. She didn’t push another conversation I wasn’t ready to have.
On behalf of most to not all of the deconstructed, deconverted, and exvengelical community, we greatly appreciate when boundaries are respected and our state of faith is accepted it. It’s a journey that’s scary as hell to go on because we are leaving what we once knew as truth and a version of comfort. We started this journey when something (or many things) no longer set right with us. For me, I can’t say that I will never be back, but since stepping away my eyes have been opened and I don’t think I can see the god of the bible in the same light.
For those of you who’ve supported and walked alongside me over the past few years, thank you, you mean the world to me. I’ve lost many people who I thought were friends and several relationships with family members have been damaged because I don’t step foot into a building once a week anymore.
With all the love,
PC: Elise Outside Photography