Yesterday marked eight years since I was baptized as a Seventh Day Adventist. Eight long and weird years since I stood in front of 300 people and told my story, and I feel it deserves some recognition.
‘Being SDA’ has never been something that identifies me, and even eight years later, I still don’t feel like I am. I know that if I chose to go to church in Washington, I would choose an SDA church, and if I went back home to Tennessee and felt compelled to go that I would end up there as well. Despite my reservations and experiences, it is where I would feel the most comfortable, where my friends are. My experience has always been different, because I didn’t grow up seeking a God; the older I get, the more weird this topic gets for everyone around me, and I would much rather keep it to myself.
I haven’t observed a Sabbath in 6 and a half years. I haven’t been to church in six and a half years. I lost my bible a few years ago, which made me feel sick and lonely, and I have (maybe) three photos from my time in California. To the casual observer, it might seem like church and religion were just a ‘phase’ I was going through, something I grabbed onto to make me feel less alone. That could be an accurate assumption in some ways, but I remember all too vividly what it felt like to be drowning, and then to come up for the sweetest breath of fresh air ever. Religion has gotten it wrong in so many huge ways, but being a part of the SDA church saved my life. I’ll always hold appreciation for them based on that alone.
I allowed myself to be led there by people who loved me, and I have allowed myself to carry it in my back pocket all these years because it comforts me. God, the Universe, Mother Nature, Father Time…whatever you want to call the force that brought you into this world, these are my comforts.
Cheers to that day (on some level), and cheers to the next eight years.