Feeble Knees

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Who (or What) is Feeble Knees?

It occurred to me this week that I never really properly introduced myself. Here's an attempt to fill you in, without giving too much away.

First off, I'm married, female, and thirty-three at present. I have no children, yet. My husband and I have been married just over two years. We live in Massachusetts, we're die-hard Red Sox fans (naturally).

There are several reasons why I write anonymously. First and foremost, I know the Internet is a wild and wooly place. I conceal my name to protect myself and my family from any unwanted stresses, like getting dooced (i.e. fired for blogging) or harassed. Of all my family, only my husband knows that I write this blog - it is my way of protecting the innocent. Some friends are aware that I blog, but they don't know which blog I write.

Because I frequently share about my past experiences (and resulting scars) about being in a spiritually abusive church, I write anonymously to protect myself from retribution, but also to protect my brothers and sisters who are still faithful members of my former church family. I love them, and I do not want to hurt them. I do question many things that they did or said in the name of Christ, but no one should ever construe (God willing) that I condemn or demean them. God forbid. After all, I was right there with them for a good long time. I understand all too well how these things go.

I was part of a evangelical/Pentecostal fellowship for several years. It was the only church I have ever regularly attended. I was an official member. There were many good things that came out of the experience, and there are things I learned in church that I am forever grateful for. It wasn't all bad. Certain people helped me in so many ways to grow in faith and to see Jesus more clearly. Others, well, not so much. During my time there I heard some crazy preaching and saw terrible things, including a forced exorcism that involved restraining a minor (who was unaccompanied by her parents) and holding her against her will. This particular event was in some ways the last straw for me, though it still took many more months before I finally left.

As for what I believe? A lot of people are no doubt curious about that. I do believe Jesus is the son of God, born of a virgin. I believe He lead a sinless life and died on the cross to pay for the sins of the world. He came back to life and ascended to heaven. I believe His Spirit (the Holy Spirit of the Trinity) operates to glorify Christ and to draw men and women to Christ. I do believe there is a place that is apart from and completely devoid of God's presence - that place is called Hell.

Without my Bible, I'd be sunk. I've read it cover-to-cover several times. I highly recommend that everyone read it for themselves and be challenged by it, but don't look for easy answers. I believe that "being saved" is not as cut and dried as some people would like to think. Personally speaking, I have more in common with more of the "unsavory" characters in the bible than I do with the giants of faith, unless you're talking about those like David, Solomon, Jacob, and so many others who had a gift for screwing up royally at times.

When I gave my heart to Jesus at age 14, I wrote Him a little note to solemnicize the occasion. In it, I freely offered my heart, but in a bit of naive wisdom that still makes me smile, I apologetically wrote that I couldn't guarantee that I wouldn't mess up from time to time, but even so, my life was His and I loved Him. That was probably the first and only time in my life I ever prophesied. Many messes later, I'm discovering that Jesus' love is deep and wide, His grace is unfathomable - I cannot plumb the depths of it. My fear of God in all His holiness prevents me from testing the limits any further. I surrendered a long time ago.

After agonizing over the decision for about two years, I finally left my church. That was a couple years ago. Though I began looking for another church, I abandoned my search for a time after getting pretty darn depressed about my choices. Today I am a classic "lone ranger Christian". I am angry about many false teachings that have hurt people and driven many, like me, to flee the church. I do believe in the institution of church, but like anything that was originally intended for good, I believe many churches have lost their way. Before they condemn me for leaving, I ask that they examine the reasons why I left. Churches can have motes in the eye too.

Blogging has been a surprising journey. At the start, I half expected to be inundated with people trying to chase me back into church, offering cheap excuses or browbeating me with scripture. To my amazement, that has not been the case (well, not always). Instead, some folks with really big hearts came along and offered consolation, encouragement and prayers. What a hopeful thing - to find a church in the wilderness.

My name, Feeble Knees, sums up where I am at. It is my admission that I am weak, that I need encouragement, that at the moment I can't run with the horses or scale the great mountains of faith. One day I found this Spurgeon sermon, and I realized I am one of those "sons of sorrow" about which he spoke. He asserts that there are some people who seem to be born melancholy, who are so sensitive to evil and grief. I wish I could explain why I've always been so sorrowful - there are many reasons, some secret, that are too painful to speak of. But it's been this way since my earliest memories, and I'm very conscious of the fact that I've been a challenge and a burden to some Christians for whom joy and contentment are more natural. For that, I'm very sorry. Often I was ashamed of myself for it, though I am learning to live with it. I do my best.

It is my hope that through this blog others will come to see that there are some weak, who struggle. They are not necessarily ignorant of scripture, stupid, or unable to help themselves. They do not necessarily lack faith. They are beloved by God and whether or not you realize it, serve an important function in the body of Christ. They remind us that we have a duty to love and encourage one another, seeking the patience and wisdom of God when our own fails. Weakness may be despised and feared by the strong, yet it is the frail and feeble ones who know the secret hiding places in the shadow of the Almighty. That is one of the blessings afforded the meek and the poor in spirit.

I'm in love with the person of Jesus as much as ever. Were it not for Him, I shudder to think what my life would be - or if it even would have come to be at all. My heart's hopes and desires are all wrapped up in Him. His mercy is great and His gentleness and patience is beyond comprehension. Hopefully my life and words reflect well upon Him.

To those who have been reading here for some time, thanks for sticking with me and helping me to sort things out and air a few grievances. For those who just came along, I hope this answers some questions and helps you understand the frame of reference from which these posts are written. I'll provide a permanent link to this post over on the left column here for future reference.

Thanks for stopping by. God bless you.
~ Feeble

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