Stepping Stones

Continued from Planting…

A classmate once asked me if I was a Christian. Though I thought this was a question, it was more like a hypothesis. He was convinced that he already knew the answer. Nevertheless, I objectionably replied “No, I’m not!” I didn’t want to be a part of that! Despite my emphatic “No!” he refused to believe me. 

What was it that made him think I was a Christian? I’m hoping that it was something good. Hopefully he had a very good impression of what it is to be one. I sure didn’t.

After my parents abandoned their family beliefs, religion left an undesirable taste in their mouths. I was young. I didn’t really understand what had happened, but if my parents weren’t going to have anything to do with God, then neither was I, or so I thought. 

I’m going to leave this part of the story a bit vague for now. It’s enough to say that I ended up on a different path than the rest of my family tree. However, I believe that my grandparents knew God, but I still have some unanswerd questions.

Bachelor #1

In the Summer of 1994 my own avoidance plan was cut off at the pass when bachelor #1 entered the picture. That August my eldest brother tied the knot with his beautiful bride. Dressed to the nines, I caught the eye of a friend of the bride who asked me for a dance. By the end of the evening he’d asked for my phone number as well.

It was revealed that he was a Catholic shortly after we started dating. I was so disappointed. I wasn’t interested in religion! As I debated whether to proceed, a family member persuaded me–through the power of guilt–to give him a fighting chance. They felt it was too harsh to immediately dismiss someone because of their beliefs. Fair enough.

Deciding to keep an open mind about Catholicism, I did continue to date this Christian. I even attended some church services with him. This was a whole new world for me. (Not in the Aladdin sort of way.) Because it was so out of my comfort zone it didn’t improve my impression of religion one bit. 

On one of our dates I was surprised with a lace veil, which I was informed I was to wear to church services. I don’t recall this being explained to me, but I’m sure that it would have felt just as awkward either way. 

The church itself–from my point of view–was eerie. It didn’t help that the service wasn’t entirely in English. If that wasn’t enough to make this experience less than enjoyable, the church goers were quite animated. They stood, then sat, then stood again as they verbalized things in this strange new dialect. I had no clue what was happening, but it was clear that I wasn’t in Kansas anymore. 

Some people may enjoy surprises and trying new things, but I was a very shy and easily intimidated version of myself back then. Consequently, I never did feel comfortable in the Catholic Church. However, it did engage us in some talk about God. 

The Source

One night, before I drifted off to sleep–believe it or not–I said a prayer, asking a God that I wasn’t even sure existed if He would make Himself real to me. Hey, why not? If you want to know if something is true go straight to the source. What’s the worst that could happen? If God weren’t real I’d go on my merry way without Him, right? 

Meanwhile, this lopsided relationship had hit a snag–in that, I really didn’t want to become a part of his church! As a result, I found myself on the fence once again.

It wasn’t long before he informed me that he wouldn’t marry a woman who wasn’t a Catholic. God may have cut me off at the pass, but whether or not a-courtin we’d continue to go, was up for debate. It appeared we had reached an impasse.

Though I was near certain this wasn’t the path I wanted to take, I was also hesitant to abandon it just yet. I was socially awkward and I didn’t exactly have guys lined up at my door. It wasn’t long, however, before my conflict was resolved when a God I didn’t know provided the path of least resistance: bachelor number two. (Big smiles.)

“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.”

Proverbs 16:9

Stay tuned for “The Path.” Available Wednesday.

25 thoughts on “Stepping Stones

    1. Thanks, Bridget. I’m so glad you’re enjoying the read. It’s nice to look back, reminisce and see what God has done and how far we have come. That’s the good kind of looking back. ☺

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Tina, your posts are always unique and charming. Our God is awesome! He was waiting for your prayer, rejoicing that you sought Him, and ready to guide your path. I am looking forward to reading “the Path.” 🌼🌺🌟

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  2. I’m so loving this journey. My family moved away from religion. The usual – too much bad stuff going on in the world. I guess I was seen as the oddball in the family. The one who went to uni, the one who became a vegetarian
    , the one …..
    it’s so refreshing to read such an honest journey. Can’t wait for it to continue and see how your path formed.

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    1. My family moved away from religion because there was too much religion in their religion. If that makes sense. I would really like to explain that one day. Going to university and becoming a vegetarian are odd ball things? University is smart. Vegetarian isn’t my lifestyle choice, but it’s usually done for good reasons.

      Thank you. I used to be freaked out to be honest. People can poke holes in what you share, or just think that you’re way out there. I AM a bit way out there in some people’s eyes probably, but that’s just because they haven’t lived life through my eyes. I haven’t lived life through there eyes either. So why not be honest? We can learn from each other.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I really enjoyed your post Tina. I, too, am looking forward to the next part.

    My father was a Christian when he was young. From what my aunt told me he was quite fervent. But somewhere along the line, long before I came along, he turned his back on his faith. I never did find out why, but I suspect it may have had something to do with the fact that my mother was not a Christian. That’s why the Bible tells us not to be unequally yoked. My father died in 1984 and to my knowledge he never came back to the Lord, unless it happened in the few hours he had before he died. My mother finally, at nearly 93 years old, accepted the Lord when my pastor shared with her.

    I’m glad you didn’t settle for the first bachelor to come along. The Lord had something else in store I can see.

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    1. Yes, you never really know do you? Only God knows who has given their heart back to Him.

      Yes, I knew bachelor #1 wasn’t the right one for me. I was just insecure and worried that I would mess something up. Thankfully God cleared everything up for me, and I knew very quickly once I got to know Andrew that he was the one I was going you marry. ☺

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      1. No I haven’t but I love those stories..we went to school together and honesty our relationship was a lot of drama back then 😬 it’s a totally God thing that we’re still together ❤️..I have shared about how nate came to faith though and God working through our marriage with that.
        Speaking of relationships, I just watched I still believe (Jeremy Camp’s testimony and love story with his wife Melissa) I won’t give you a spoiler alert in case you haven’t watched it but ugh that one is a tear jerker!!

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      2. Ya well they’ve turned it into a movie, hit the theatre in March but didn’t get the attention it deserved because of the virus and theatres closed…anyway it’s out in video…heartbreaking movie!!!!!

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      3. Oh, really? I never heard about it, but I guess with the virus that’s why. That’s too bad. If I come across it we’ll have to watch it. We cancelled our Netflix and are trying out Disney. Have you tried Pure Flix? I heard that a lot of the movies aren’t even available in Canada, so we haven’t bothered trying it yet.

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      4. Yes mom uses pure flix ..Plus when I’m listening to Christian songs on YouTube there’s a lot of pure flix trailers that pop up…there’s a couple of them that I really want to watch but I never wrote down the names of them and now I can’t find them when I try to search to see if I can figure out which ones they are🤦‍♀️

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