I commend every single person who wakes up early on Sunday, hops in that cold shower, finds their best dress, best shoes, best tie, and flies out the door for an hour plus of spiritual beatdown. To enter the church doors with all the piercing eyes, carrying your awkward Bible, some lugging an awkward purse and wild children, finding a seat in silence, trying to sing the songs you don’t know (not so loudly that others can you hear but loud enough that God can hear you), and not fidgeting for the entire sermon. Then trying to say hello to the pastor who is surrounded by more important looking people, meeting new people who probably already know you from tagged pictures on Facebook, and slipping out without having to volunteer for some expensive mission trip to an unpronouncable country. You go home, set the Bible on your nightstand for the week, and loosen your tie. You survived.
I’ve often thought: Wouldn’t life be easier without church? If I wasn’t a Christian, couldn’t I just do the stuff I always wanted to do? What do I even get out of all this?
In moments of extreme doubt, this is the tennis match I play out in my head. I’ve made lists. I’ve divided it pros and cons. I’ve pretended to be an atheist for days at a time; I used to be one so that wasn’t too hard. I’ve reformatted my moral grid to relativism. A few times I’ve contemplated all the wild things I could do if I wasn’t a “Sunday church person.” I remember what it was like when I would stay up four nights in a row downing shots of Bacardi and flirting with random strangers in tubetops. Sometimes I can even convince myself those days weren’t so bad. I imagine a world without God — impossible — so I imagine just my life without God. And every time the suspicion screams out: Life would be so much easier without Him.