Sunday, January 25, 2009

Would Religion Have Made A Difference?

I wasn't raised in a church. Bear's family is Catholic but he had not been a regular church goer for years, since he was a young child.

We weren't church-goers. For the first few years living here, he worked nights, Sunday - Thursday. We couldn't afford to be picky about work. After that, we just never made an effort to join a church. My husband is quite shy and I am not that outgoing myself, especially in new situations.

After our daughter died, Bear took a week off work, and then he called his boss to tell him that he was taking another week off because I could barely walk and he didn't want to leave me alone. His boss said to him, "Well, you should think about us!" and that was the last straw. Bear began to look for a new job and finally found one (even though it took several months).

With his new job, he was no longer working Sundays (now working the 3:30 or 4:30 AM shift Tuesday- Saturday) and I brought up the fact that maybe we should join a church. I felt this need to do whatever it takes so that I could be sure to see my daughter again. But we never did... we didn't really know how to approach the subject. Do we just walk into a church? I have no idea.

Then Bear got sick.

After they cleared him of cancer, again I felt like we are being punished for something, we need religion. But again, we just never did. We talked about it but we didn't actually do anything about this and before we knew it, Bear was sick again.

Lately, I have been listening to other people's stories and reading other blogs... Many people go through trials and difficulties but so many of them have religion to help them through. Their faith and beliefs are keeping them positive and allowing them to cope with these situations.

And it is not just about the beliefs .... but the community.... I know it is not good to have envy of others, but it is almost impossible not to be. I wish I had that kind of support.

I am not saying I have no support, but I feel that it dwindles after awhile. I really have not seen many people since the funeral. I am alone and sad and missing my Bear and my Babybear.

I wonder how much religion would have made a difference..

Would it have saved them?

Would this journey be a little easier to handle?

Would I not be so alone?

I don't really know the point of this post... I am just talking to myself, getting my thoughts out there. I know no one has real answers to these questions and I don't expect you either.

I guess I just .... wonder.


Jen Sue Wild said...

I have been meber of my church all my life and yes it is a great suport system and so much more.

As to how to join a church you do just what you said you walk into a church and you check it out.

This is my opionion No Teri it would have not made a diffrents weather you went to church or not Bear and baby bears out come would have been the same. I have no clue as to why the Lord chose to bring them home when he did thats not an answer I can give.
I aso know with out a showdow of an dought that God loves you Ter and he knows what an amazeing person that you are.

I incourage you to seek out a church I am sure you will find joy in attending and friends that will soon become your family that can help you find peace in this life with out Bear and Baby bear untill you are with them again.

Jo said...

Ok, I apologize up front for the length of his comment. And if you feel that you don't want to publish it on your blog, then that's fine. I just wanted to share my thoughts with you :)

I can so totally see myself in your words, Ter. I had to really think before I commented...not because I had to find the words that didn't sound judgemental... but because I wanted to find the perfect words that would help you to feel better about this.

My very first post on my other blog (My Path to Jesus) is a pretty brief description of my religious journey.

I do not believe that God punishes anyone. I don't believe that He would take your daughter and your husband because you don't attend church. If that were the case, then there would be many more people alive right now.

I think that suffering and untimely death is the work of the devil. I don't think that God CAN do anything about it... I think He tries... but in some instances the devil is just too strong. And I think this pains God a great deal... like the parent that He is.... to be unable to save His children.

I don't think you need to feel guilty. Although, I understand why you do... I have felt that guilt for not attending church.

As for how to approach attending a new church... it is, I think, a very difficult step to take. Since we've been married, Mike and I have attended 6 churches in an attempt to find the perfect fit. Each time was so stressful... not knowing what to expect. And yes, you do just walk right in and sort of go with the flow. But when we walked into our current church we instantly felt peace wash over us and we felt like we belonged there. I'm not sure that everyone has that experience... but Mike and I both did, and enjoyed sharing the experience with each other afterwards :)

As I said in the beginning... I believe that faith is a very personal journey that is between you and God. Talk to Him. He will always listen. Shout at Him. He can take it. Be angry with Him. He will still love you. And when the time is right... when you feel like you are ready to take that path... then you will find a church that will hopefully fit you. It may not be the first one you try... but you'll know it when you find it :)

And when you do.... God will be there waiting for you. He wants you to find Him. And He will wait for as long as it takes for that to happen.

I am still not where I want to be in my relationship with God. But I am here for you if you have questions or want advice :) I will do my best!

Always remember... as cliche as it sounds... God loves you and He is always with you.

Allyn said...

I am not a very religious person. I go to church rarely, mainly on Christmas. My father died a few years ago at the age of 57 and he had been very anti-religion his whole life. And he seemed very at peace when he died...I think, for me, religion helps in terms of not being alone; more for community than anything else.

There is a support system that people might not have otherwise (I know my dad didn't) and that is a really great thing... it makes me think of God being anywhere there is love and giving, including in ourselves.
But I don't think that going to church, or believing in or worshiping God would have saved my father. Whether you choose to go to church or not doesn't make you a bad person and I don't think that someone will die because they aren't more religious. What it's about is being a good person in your life, and sometimes there's just a different plan for some of us.
Hope that helps.

Amber said...

I wanted to leave you with this great quote that I absolutely love.

"God is not proud. He will have us even though we have shown that we prefer everything else to Him."

CS Lewis

I wish that I had that quote a couple years ago. For a few years during college, I didn't go to church and my mom got cancer. It wasn't so much that I blamed myself, but I found myself making bargains with God and then I realized that that isn't how God works.

He knew my story, my mom's story before we were even born and so all the changes that I would have made in my life as bargains wouldn't have made a bit of difference.

Church is great, but I think your own personal relationship with God is what matters most and you can get that without going to church every week.

Why Do We Even Have That Lever? said...

Hey girl...

like everyone said above...

would it have made a difference to either of them if you went to church? Probably not. Maybe, but probably not.

Danty doesn't go to church. She survived a very rare form of lymphoma.

Elizabeth does go to church, and she's tried for years and years to have a baby, including two rounds of invetro, and nothing ever happened for her. (Now, she is three weeks away from her due date though...)

I don't know what prompted this post. I don't know if you read my post on my blog about what happened to my cousin over Christmas and what that says about faith.

I jokingly tried to "force" you to come to church with me before Christmas, (although I would never, ever force you to do anything like that, it was and is your choice.) but that didn't work out.

The offer still stands though. It's a lutheran church, but don't hold that against them. :-) I'm United by background, but the pastor there is so great, that after we were married in that church we stayed.

It is across town, but we can go together. I don't always go every week, and in fact, haven't been since Christmas due to illness in the family and just needing to sleep one day, but am going next week.

You are more than welcome to come with me and check it out. You are more than welcome to come with me and see if you like it. I don't think you have to choose a religeon right now. I don't think it matters.

Our pastor is going throug some hard times himself right now. His son has cancer. His wife's father just passed on in Decemeber. He is very comforting. There was a service when his FIL passed on where I felt that he was speaking right to you with the things he was saying. He was talking about anger with God for taking those you love, and how it affects your life and faith.

Anyway, like I said before. You'd need to be ready by 10"30 on sunday and I'll pick you up. It goes from 11-12. Church is right beside the Miseracordia hosp.

Let me know if you want to come.

Heidi said...

I happened across your blog tonight. For what my opinion is worth I believe finding a Church family would be an awesome support system for you. Along with helping you to feel closer to God it would give you a place where you can always find support that will help you through the difficult times. Do I think going to Church would have stopped what happened to your baby and husband? No I doubt it would. Bad things sometimes happen to good people. My husband was raised Catholic. While I was raised Methodist my family stopped going to Church while I was young. When my husband and I adopted out daughter we decided it was time we started going to Church regularly. I was a bit doubtful of the Catholic Church to start with to be honest. But that's where my husband wanted to go and it was the best decision we could have made. I feel so at home there and love our Church family. After a couple of years I went through the process to become Catholic. Maybe you would find the same peace and comfort at Church. Yes you can walk right in and attend a service or talk to a priest or deacon if you just need someone to talk to.