Today, we are taking a much-needed break to update on everything that’s been going on in my life with faith and religion. Plus, a blog change! They coincide so I thought it’d be best to talk about it all together.
If you have tried to access the site in a few days, but haven’t been able to, that’s because I changed URLs! I believe if you try to go to lord-still-loves-me.com, it should redirect to dropsofjules.com now. For many of you, the site will still show up as lord-still-loves-me.com. It takes awhile to make the technological change, but thankfully I have a great deal of resources to help me make the transition as seamlessly as possible. Tech support from my hosting company has been incredibly helpful over the week.
So, why make the change? It’s been on my heart for some time now, and over the weekend, I finally felt ready to make the jump.
Lord Still Loves Me was all about my recovery from anorexia. Drops of Jules still will be about my recovery, but it will also be about my life in general. I want to chat about dating and friends and my job and religion and mental health… and so much more. I want this little writing spot of mine to be the literal drops of me.
By the way, Drops of Jules is a play on words for my favorite song- Drops of Jupiter by Train! For kicks, let’s pause and take a listen.
Ahhhh, Patrick Monahan’s voice will never get old.
I realize I could have easily transitioned Lord Still Loves Me to what I hope to be my blog now, but there was something that felt off, and that is because my faith has drastically changed this year. I believe for the better, but some might disagree.
My faith is my faith, and in no way do I think what I believe is what everyone should believe. Everyone is in their own life path, and I’ve come to this perspective based on my own daily life and what I’ve learned. This post is not an attempt to condemn or convince anyone of religion, one way or another. This is me sharing my heart.
An Update on My Faith
So here is where I am at with religion: First, let’s start with a mini background to give it some context.
I was educated in elementary through high school in a private, conservative Christian school. It was a bubble. A small, tiny bubble, with an even more narrow perspective on Christianity. Though nondenominational, I’m now aware of where it aligned itself and that is on a very specific sect of Christianity. At home, I was raised relatively secularly, but at school, it was strict. My parents never mandated we had to go church, and they always wanted to ensure that my brother and I chose whatever spiritual path we wanted, which I am grateful for.
My high school experience influenced me greatly. Christian thought was my thought. I looked at the world through a staunch Christian mindset, but I didn’t know the first thing about Christianity. In the plainest of terms, I was ignorant. I’d say I believed in the stories dispersed throughout the Bible, but had I actually read them? I was claiming a lot of truths I didn’t even know.
Fast forward to spring of my first year here at San Diego State University (last year, this time). I took two Religious Studies classes (this was before I was a RELS minor): Exploring the Bible and Women in the Bible. Both of the classes were taught on a secular level, by the same professor, with the understanding that the professor was coming from a respectful perspective. Over the course of the semester, I became incredibly close to him, always bugging him during office hours and asking hundreds of questions. I love that guy and still email him/see him every week. He’s my mentor here, and I hope to continue contact with him for all my life, wherever our paths take us.
In his classes, just four hours out of every week for the two classes combined, I learned more about the faith I supposedly subscribed to than I had in my entire thirteen years of private Christian schooling.
Yeah, I know. It made no sense to me.
I got angry.
I felt manipulated, and for a long time, I gave up trying to connect with this ethereal being that was my “Father.” I felt betrayed by every teacher I had had during primary and secondary schooling. I was annoyed that I spent all that time memorizing Bible verses instead of learning the actual history behind all of lyrics.
I ended my first year at college tired, flustered, frustrated, but most of all, I felt enriched.
I wrestled with these issues a lot, but on the surface, I still identified as a Christian. I kept on the persona of it in my personal life, purely because I was afraid to stray from the path. When I returned home, I was surrounded by my faithful friends who abided by the Scripture, and I didn’t want to disappoint them. My senior year of high school, teachers were on us about keeping up with our faith, and I swore up and down that I’d read my Bible every day. Looking back, I did read my Bible every day, but it was to look at it through a literary critical perspective.
I started to look at my life: I wasn’t being an anti-Christian, but I certainly was not being a Christian. I wasn’t praying. I wasn’t trying to connect to God. And when I did try to do those and participate, it felt disconnected and fake.
As I’m typing all of this, I’m terrified. Not because I worry I’ll be renounced by anyone out there who reads my blog as a Christian, but I’m terrified because it is hard to be honest with myself about these things. All my life, Christianity was me. For so long, I found my solace and comfort in God and Jesus Christ, but the more I take Religious Studies classes, the more I realize how dirty the faith is. It’s saying that everything I believed my entire life, was somehow wrong. And this isn’t to say it is wrong! But it was not the full picture. I intend to find out as much as I can now though. I didn’t even know what the Crusades were, and how horrid they were, until a few months ago in my Christianity class.
All religions have some dirt under their nails. All religions have similarities. All religions are absolutely interesting.
I’m not saying I’ll never return to Christianity. In fact, I very may well do so in the future! But if I take a hard, internal look at my being right now, I really cannot honestly say that I believe wholeheartedly in what the Christian faith says.
For one, there are over 30,000 differing sects of Christianity. Some believe in the Trinity. Some don’t. Some believe Jesus had children. Some believe he was celibate. Some believe he never died on the cross. Some believe he was never a physical being. Some believe that the God of the Old Testament is different than the God of New Testament. (<– If you’re into this stuff like I am, this is a wormhole you should Google.)
It just gets so confusing, and I don’t know enough about it to make a definite decision that I am content with. What I do know, is that I want to make the decision for myself. No more accepting what someone says at face value. If I have a question, I’m going to ask it. If a professor can’t give me an answer, I will work on it myself until I get one that satisfied me.
I think that’s what people mean when they say passion. I finally feel passion- an insatiable desire to know more, to feel more, to be more.
That’s why I declared a double major, and that’s why I hope to go on to get my doctorate in some area of Religious Studies. I find these rich and beautiful histories to be fascinating. it’s remarkable the myths, martyrs, traditions that have commenced as a result of one religion or another. It’s mesmerizing, and I cannot get enough.
I don’t have all of the answers, but that’s what I’m most excited about. I’ll never have all of the answers, but for the first time in my life, I’m taking responsibility for discovering what I believe for myself. That’s what I think is important.
Please note: this is NOT me condemning anyone else’s beliefs or ideals toward religion, whether they believe in it or not. This is all a personal journey for me as I come to a consensus on my spirituality. The last thing I want is to be that person who shoves my religion down another person’s throat. That just is not cool, and if this post comes off like that, than I’m really sorry.
Talking on a personal level about religion is so difficult. Seriously, you should see my hunched shoulders as I type this right now. That is why I’m going to decrease that immensely. It’s just not worth it right now, because I’ll inevitably put my foot in my mouth because I really don’t know enough to have any authority to write on it.
That is a very long-winded explanation for the change from Lord Still Loves Me to Drops of Jules. Many of the emails I get are asking how to merge faith into recovery, but right now, I really don’t have the first clue who to answer that. I still have a spiritual sense, in fact I think it is more heightened than ever, but it does not exist entirely for one religion.
I hope all of that makes sense! For now, we are sticking to Drops of Jules, which is perfect because that is my personal instagram name! I’m now going to merge that Instagram into being both personal and for this blog, so make sure to follow that over there. I’m also forwarding my Lord Still Loves Email to my brand new email, which is dropsofjules(at)gmail(dot)com. You can email me HERE. This also means that I’m changing all of my social media handles as well, so I figured while we are on the topic, I’ll post them here!
- Twitter: @DropsOfJules
- Instagram: @DropsOfJules
- Pinterest: Drops of Jules
- Bloglovin’: Drops of Jules
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nothing else really changes! I know I mentioned a few weeks back that Mental Health Monday will be a thing, and that is STILL the case. I’m going to start it once finals for the semester are over, because than I’ll have more time to regulate the guidelines and make sure the first few weeks run smoothly.
We will still talk about recovery here! You can always email me about recovery related topics as well. We are just going to add in more life posts. I want to keep this personal and include friends and dating and making my way through college and then eventually grad school. AHH!
Thank you for sticking with me and helping ease the transition! You all are the best. <3
I thought I’d end this post with my favorite Emily Dickinson’s poem, which pretty much sums up my thoughts on religion succinctly.
No questions today, but I’d love to hear any thoughts you might had while reading this post!