This has been a different Easter season for me on several fronts.
My grandmother was devout Catholic until the day she passed. As a way to connect with her, I have observed Lent my entire adulthood. Even though she passed in December of 2006, I continued the observation. Over the years I have either given up something or several things. Other years I have set a goal to be completed by the end of the Lent. This year, I just wasn’t feeling Lent. I “know” how that sounds. When the faith walk is weird and uncertain, there doesn’t seem to be an appropriate response to Lent.
I have felt like a faith wanderer without a home. I haven’t really felt like I had a place to “lay my head.” My husband and sons have been attending our old church, while my daughter and I have been in the next town over at the Episcopal Church. While returning the denominational roots of my family has been great, it’s been hard to not worship with my husband and kids.I know what my daughter and I feel towards the old denomination, as well how my husband and sons feel. I loathe being in this position. I don’t know what the answer is to have all five of us worshiping together again under one roof again.
Honestly, the majority of my prayers have either been “Really Lord?” The other has been “Lord help!” While sitting in the pew of the Episcopal Church, the “Nicene Creed” and “The Lord’s Prayer” have been the most words I’ve actually prayed out loud in a while. I’m grateful in the sighs and the groans, the Lord knows what my heart wants and needs, even though I don’t.
My family and I chose to worship with long time friends, in a church where we both like and respect the pastor. Towards the beginning of service the pastor asked us to “Take a minute and ask the Lord for what we need.” My internal response was “Really Aarron (senior pastor)? If I had the answer to that, I’d have a lot of other things figured out.” I had to attempt to come to terms with the fact the Lord knows what I need and that at some point He will show me.
This Easter was also different in that my husband and I decided to not go big. There were no fancy clothes. We wore what we’d wear on a typical Sunday morning. I wore jeans, which almost felt like a sin. I’ve always felt like we needed to dress extra nice and buy the fancy clothes. My kids aren’t fans of dress clothes and I just didn’t have it in me to have that fight this year. We didn’t do big Easter baskets for the kids. They did each receive a chocolate bunny and small gift, but there wasn’t anything extravagant, or expensive. With our lunch, we had a ham, corn casserole and rolls. Most years we have enough food to feed a small army and neither one of us wanted to do that this year.
Once lunch was over, the kids headed to hang out with the “bonus siblings.” The girls are at their house. The “big brother” took the “little boys” to the park. Pretty sure this is the first Easter where the kids have left the house. I took a nap. Hubby is currently cleaning the kids’ bathroom. It just seems appropriate that even our typical day at home isn’t typical or happening today.
I honestly have a ton of faith questions. I am having a conversation with a long time respected friend and my favorite pastor’s wife this week. I also plan on emailing the priest at the church where my daughter and I have been attending. I’m grateful for godly women who are willing to have the hard conversations and allow me to be honest about what I feel and where I am. I’m grateful for them being willing to listen to my story and especially their willingness to jump into my story and walk alongside me.
While I still hold to the absolute foundation of my faith, I have no clue as to what the final faith house” will look like when all is said and done. I don’t know where my family will land. I just know what my daughter and I can’t do at this point. I also want to respect what my husband and sons need.It’s been a much longer process than I expected, but at the end I trust the Lord will show me where His hand has been all over this and I will have an incredible story to tell.