I was raised in a devout Seventh-Day Adventist home. The Sabbath was not something I understood as much as I accepted. The sun went down on a Friday, and with it the TV was turned off, food was precooked and an eerie calm took the house. On Saturday morning, I would wake up, get dressed and spend the day in church.
Being the extrovert that I am, I always found myself up front. Singing (even though I can’t), leading services, even preaching became standard for me the older I got.
Once I became a teenager however, I naturally began to tire of the routine. I was not required to be engaged in who God was once I kept parading up front. I was a “good girl” so I wasn’t able to ask the real burning questions I had about God and my faith.
It was in college that I met God for what felt like the first time. I went to an Adventist college where worship was a mandate. Yet and still, I found joy in church and worship that I never had before. Sitting in a pew, I could hear the Word of God coming from people who had gone through things I went through. Sex? They had it. Drank alcohol? They did it. My little church by the seaside spoke of redemption like it was an easy road. At Oakwood, I met people who could freely speak of salvation and the healing it brought them. I coveted that. I claimed that.
So when I came home and said I wanted to sit down, I thought it would be met with support. After all I had been a great crusader for this congregation for all my life. Instead I got frowns and questions of what happened to me. Could I say, “I don’t feel God’s presence here and I’m tired of being put on a stage to pretend that I do?” No. So I just stopped going.
I will not act like I instead stayed at home and liased with the Lord. It’s been a true rollercoaster but I will say that I have never prayed the way I pray now. I read the Word more – and still need to do better but I have a relationship with God. I went from being a programme participant to a believer.
I’m ready to find myself back in church. But before I go in, I will remind myself of the way I fell in love with the Lord. The only person who can tell me to stand up front is Him, and I will do it only for His glory.