Dumb Dog

We had the missionaries over for dinner this week. One of the missionaries, Elder Hunt or Hunter (I can’t remember which is which), is from Gridley, CA. His family was living there and attended the same ward as I served in, Gridley 3rd. Granted this missionary was 8 years old. I have no recollection of him nor him of me but it was fun to pull out my missionary stuff and reminisce.

It is pretty awkward to have missionaries over. I am not super grounded in my testimony so I don’t have the desire to shout it from the mountain tops. Missionaries have a number of challenges they propose to help strengthen faith. Daily family scriptures. Check! (We are on 220 days in a row!) Family home evening. Check! (with our family planning meeting the night before, it gets done and we look forward to it.) Then there is personal prayer and scriptures. Not checked.

I am much more at ease with where I am at spiritually right now. I am okay with not knowing and not feeling. It is easier. A few months ago when I was super insecure about what I must be doing wrong to cause me to feel so forsaken or guilty or abandoned and unworthy or just not one of God’s chosen, I tried very hard to do ALL the things that would help me feel closer to God. I prayed and felt alone. I read scriptures and felt confused and angry and overwhelmed. I went to the temple and felt uncomfortable and like an outsider. All these things that used to bring such peace, strength and understanding were now the source of great despair, shame and solitude.

My relationship with God is not a priority right now. In Anne of Green Gables Anne says, “God made my hair red on purpose, and I’ve never cared about Him since.” I relate a lot with Anne. I have had unrealistic expectations. I thought if I knocked, my way to God would be opened. I believed that God loved me, I believed that He would help me to find hope and peace when everything felt hopeless. I counted on it. I professed it. Then I was left. Alone. Empty. Or at least unable to find my way. So I don’t trust God. I feel like a dog that has been beat by it’s owner and still remains loyal. I keep creeping back with my tail between my legs hoping that maybe this time He’ll acknowledge me. It is just easier on my heart to resolve, like Anne, not to care.

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