Breaking My Silence: Why I Believe Faith is Like Love

“Why aren’t you writing? I want to see you on the computer writing again.”

This may be the most romantic thing my husband has ever said. He knows how much I need to write. He understands how not writing weighs on me. More importantly, he believes in me. So, today I am going to break my silence.

Forty days of not writing may not seem like a big deal to others, but it’s the longest break I’ve taken in three years. I never planned to stop. I simply allowed days to turn into weeks and weeks to turn into a month.

It is easy to blame my choice not to write on the potential professional changes taking place behind the scenes. Changes I still can’t discuss publicly. Changes I can’t wait to share because they really are the culmination of  many years of working with children.

But, this would not be the full truth. Even though it’s scary (terrifying in fact) to admit, I know that my non-writing phase is about so much more. You see, I have been going through a bit of a metamorphosis. Not on the outside, but within my heart. I suddenly find myself thinking about what it means to have faith. I find myself asking what having grace is really about. What it means to have a calling. Do we go down many paths in life making decisions freely — good and bad — only to end up exactly where we are supposed to be?

I have always believed in God and in the interconnectivity of all life. I know with certainty that there is more beyond this realm — that our souls carry on. I have seen many examples of the power of love and prayer in action and have never called this into question. But, I always considered myself more spiritual than religious.

I think this is because I’ve never had a real church home and was skeptical of organized religion. I didn’t like the way some people would use their religion as a way to place judgment against others. I also never felt this need to identify myself as a specific denomination. I didn’t need “religion” to understand and fully embrace a life that values love, acceptance, forgiveness, and empathy. But recently, I have been going to church. Yes, for 13 Sundays in a row I have sat in a pew and listened with an open heart to a uniquely unassuming, surprisingly modern, and strangely endearing Pastor speak about what it means to have faith. For 13 weeks in a row, I have prayed and been introduced to this entirely new world. A world that seemed strange and foreign to me, until I actually spent time among the people. A world that makes me wonder if I ever really knew what I needed in the first place.

In the beginning, I attended at the invitation of the Pastor and I considered it more of a potential business proposition (more on this later). But, now I find myself looking forward to having one hour on Sunday to reflect, feel, and pray. To really pray — probably for the first time in my life. Over the weeks, I have found myself in the surprising position of feeling envious and curious of those with an undeniable faith in something I am just beginning to understand. Something that extends well beyond my understanding of spirituality. It’s as if I was on the outside of a secret that was there all along.

I know that for more secular people — many in my own family — it sounds strange. Maybe it even sounds like I “drank the kool aide,” and am losing sight of rational thinking. But, that is okay because I am starting to realize that there is a beauty to opening your heart and your mind to that which seems impossible. I am starting to realize that this interconnectedness I have always felt is something more.

Faith is the acknowledgement that there is more — even if you can’t see it, touch it or explain it scientifically. Faith is like love. You feel it and know it to be true.

Faith is like love

Church (or synagogue/mosque/temple), is the place where you can glimpse that love ever so slightly. I am still a student of all of this and fully admit that I don’t really know anything. I have many questions. I only understand that I am seeing a value in what I once turned my nose to with prejudice. So, for now I am committed to simply being open. Open to learning more. Open to seeing and, probably more accurately, feeling more.

This doesn’t mean I will begin writing about religion on a regular basis. I just needed to share what has been happening in my life. Hopefully, this will clear some of the writing cobwebs and allow me the freedom to write about everything else again.

Have you ever felt this desire for more?

 

About 

Nicole Dash is a writer, blogger and business owner who lives in the suburbs outside Washington, DC with her husband and four children. She started her career as a journalist and copy editor. She also managed public relations and corporate communications for a national franchise company, but in 2006 started a child care business. In 2012, she launched Tiny Steps Mommy, a lifestyle and parenting blog that quickly gained a following and connected her to an expansive group of women-owned businesses. In 2013, she started a digital marketing consulting business that focused on growing community in an authentic way. Through those connections she was inspired to open Play, Work or Dash, a coworking space that also offers onsite childcare up to three hours per day. It is where like-minded professionals pursue their business goals with the extra level of support parents desire; a place where you "bring your kids to work." She is an active member of the Washington, DC blogger community. She has been published on The Washington Post, Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, Mamalode and Pop Sugar.

Comments

comments

Comments

  1. Oh Nicole!! What a beautifully authentic post about these steps you are taking toward reaching into a new and glorious possibility of faith, and exploring that ever elusive ‘religion’ you speak of so well. I absolutely love that you can be so genuine about your idea of religious circles and how it’s much like being on the outside of a secret, oh do I get that! I truly believe that is why so many people turn their backs on the ‘church’- mainly because of uncertainty and fear that it is something weird and beyond their way of living normally. Something so foreign to people can be a threat to their own self preservation, ya know?

    I get that. Oh, do I get that.

    The way you so beautiful write, I can feel your tender heart and seeking soul soften to the likes of something that had always been a bit ‘out there’ and as you so eloquently expressed, it may be a surprising blessing deeper than you imagined it could be. I am so excited that you have found a Pastor who is so inviting and welcoming and real and ‘reachable’- that is SO important!!

    I’m just so touched by this piece, Nicole. I’m emotionally affected because you share a sensitive and private journey with your readers, all in love and honest reflection. But what hits my heart hardest, is the hope that seems to illuminate through your story, your experience, your journey…

    A hope of something magnificent and perhaps? Miraculous.

    Keep that open heart, that seeking soul, and keep going forward with trusting courageous steps toward God’s open waving arms, shouting ever so gently “Over here! I’m here!”

    He has a way of being personal like that. I know. I’ve taken those courageous steps toward Him myself.

    You won’t regret it.

    Promise. <3
    Chris Carter recently posted…The Power of MemoriesMy Profile

  2. Lallon Pond says:

    I have deep faith, but it’s not blind. I highly recommend Richard Rohr… he’s inclusive, deeply personal, and reveals things to me that I would never have discovered on my own.