If you check out the list of blogs I follow, you'll see that my friends are quite artistic and write very well (I have such cool friends). The blog I just added today is specifically focused on my friend's attempt to "remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy," and what that's meant for her. Another blog (which first inspired me to start "putting myself out there" with my writing, as a sister recently phrased it) contains a wonderful entry about spirituality and how we won't always find what we need spiritually in a church.
It got me to thinking that some of the best writing and some of the most enlightening conversations I've recently enjoyed center around struggles with "the church" and, for lack of a better word, dogma. Guess what, guys? There are a whole bunch of us who feel the same way. We don't necessarily THINK the same things and we don't necessarily BELIEVE the same things, but we all FEEL (at least sometimes) oppressed by church/dogma/belief systems.
Humans have this moderately annoying tendency to screw up really fabulous things. We are truly gifted at it. We take a great concept, like coming together to celebrate life and love, and we turn it into a strict set of rules that we all have to follow or else. We've done the same psychological damage to ourselves about things like enjoying delicious food (can you say eating disorders?), supporting our families (putting our careers and society's concept of success before everything else - including our families), and even the love between a man and a woman.
The good news, in my view, is that a bunch of us are trying to connect with God in our own ways. If we continue to put ourselves out there and talk about it, write about it, and even sing about it - then we're making each other stronger. It only takes a connection from one person to one other person to create a holy moment.
So, my fellow travelers, I say keep pushing your own spiritual limits, but don't let anyone else tell you what they're supposed to be. I promise that I'm over here in my little corner of the world, cheering you on. And, although I have no way to know for sure, I believe with all my heart that God is smiling this big huge Buddha-smile as we do this.