At a LGBTQ+ Christian retreat this weekend, I had the pleasure of attending some workshops. One of my favourite things is writing about stories. The focus of one particular session was just that–our stories of faith and spirituality and how to write them with impact. I would like to share an excerpt with you, in the hopes to inspire your own musings.
The prompt was “How did you experience faith and spirituality in your childhood?”. If you’re like me, you grew up outside of any particular faith or religious practice. Humans do not grow up in a void however. Those things that we see as magical, those pretend conversations we have with nobody, those memories of awe and inspirations we have as children—those are spiritual experiences.
I always felt like some nebulous entity or thing was looking out for me. Growing up outside of faith, religion, or spiritual traditions–I couldn’t put words to whom exactly I was singing to, to whom I was addressing my journal or to whom I was wishing to for safety and security in those dangerous and uncertain times.
I was fascinated and still am by nature. The heavens, the stars, the moon, clouds that are backlit at twilight, sparkling night-time frost in the moonlight, things that grow, smell, seem to dance in nature–all reminded me that there was more, but didn’t say what the more was. The resilient beauty around me, the wild and different, allowed me to be wild and different. I was most content outdoors, reading or hearing stories, or singing.
The energy of creation and creativity was what kept me going when everything else in my life was a mess. Now isn’t much different, except that I know who has been guiding and guarding me by name.
I was the free spirit, the old soul, the odd one, the pretender, the artist. I was the child who saw the world in a very clear and profound way that confused the grownups around me. I was wisdom in a five-year old.