a confession

**Non church geeks beware of this total church dork rant.**

Its been a bit rough going lately. But, that is not my confession.

What my confession IS is a realization that the way that I used to get through the really, really rough times was through switching the radio station from MPR, to the praise and worship station. In the Twin Cities its called KTIS. Friends, I am a recovering praise and worship arm waving, hand lifting, groan affirming while praying Christian. (Although sometimes I still whisper "yes" when I want to affirm someone elses prayer, I do. Whatever.)

Back in the day I used to listen to KTIS all the time, I was belting out "Lord I Lift Your Name On High" with hand motions and the whole thing rolling down interstate 94. As long as I am confessing, I used to know all the songs, and even hit a praise concert or two.

Now, I am not at all trying to insult my friends who are down with P&W. Whatever you need to get your spiritual freak on, I say whoo hoo and let your freak flag fly. I won't judge.

But, here is what I will do.

I will ask you if you believe what they are singing. I will ask when you call God "He" and "Father" and "Him" and "His" if you really believe in God having gender. I will ask if the theology that is sung and flung on these stations is what you really believe. Like… really.

I have been having a rough time lately. I turned off the member drive on MPR (whatever we all do it) and thought to myself "yeah, a little heartfelt singing to my God might just be the thing that could really bring me comfort and healing, like the way that it used to." I turned on KTIS, and heard all about my gender-bound God, who wishes that I would do more for Him.

And you know what, turning my radio station did bring me comfort. I learned that I have changed, and that is a good and comforting thing. I have been transformed, I have grown. Yeah, I know, its not a pithy praise and worship song. But when I realized this, I sort of stopped, right in that moment of realization, and was grateful. I praised and gave thanks to God, quietly while pushing the button on my radio, to switch back to the member drive, and said thank you God. I love a very big, expansive, inclusive God.

God, thank you. For where I have been, for laughing at me, with me, for me and through me. Thank you for the many tongues and tribes and hymnals and songbooks you speak through. Thank you for not judging me then, or now. Thank you for teaching and reminding me not to judge, you are right, its so ugly. Thanks for showing up. You are an awesome God. Thank you. Amen.

8 thoughts on “a confession

  1. Hey Rach,
    This is an interesting post. (And you know I LOVE confession, church geek that I am!)
    For me, I have no problem with giving God a gender. Since Jesus talked about him as the father, it suits me just fine. But I certainly believe that God is bigger than our conception of (her, him, it…).
    As far as Jesus is concerned, since I came from a non-Christian background, discovering the incarnation was one of the great mysteries and miracles of Christianity. God did what?!?!? God came and walked among us?
    Wow. It still can bring me to tears to think of it.
    And wow, don’t you just marvel at those moments when you realize how far you have come?
    Makes me think I want to write a post about it, LOL.

  2. As one who by & large stands firmly outside the God Squad boundaries, I must say, the revelatory God you describe finding is one to which I can most relate and hitch my wagon. I may not always be *IN* the wagon (on it? whatever), but would be proud to call it encumbered.
    Welcome to finding your own faith, Rae. It’s been there all along!

  3. The post I didn’t post was the day I had at church that was BAD bad bad. It was the “contemporary” worship service that a bunch of Baby boomers designed thinking it would be cool and that it would have “youth appeal” because we sing from the Gather Hymnal instead of any of our own Episcopal resources. It’s like watching a bunch of Scandihoovian Minnesotans trying to pull off African American Spirituals. ZERO AUTHENTICITY. I was on my knees, crying and praying for my recently deadn, newly resurected friend Janet. When I am stressed (and that happens in October) I bail from talk radio – fund-drive or not – to classical. It sooths my soul.
    Then again, Mick Jagger and company sing a good sermon now and then.

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