When I was young, I found myself afraid to think about God.

It meant sitting in tight pews, having to wear a frilly dress,

Men in suits passing offering plates to collect my pennies,

People eager to hear what sin someone else might confess.

"Wide is the path that leads to hell," was said in a booming voice,

"But you can be saved if you repent of your sins," he proclaimed.

I was only a little girl full of curiosity and eager to learn,

I didn't know about evil or hatred that was done in Satan's name.

I thought I would always be a child, I guess we all did back then.

I didn't want to lead anyone anywhere, I just wanted to be me,

To keep running through mud puddles and teaching my dog to play,

I still had so much to learn, so much pain left for me to see.

I tried to teach my little brother what I thought was right.

I wanted him to say "thank-you," "please," and "excuse me,"

Because if he was good, he would never have to go anywhere,

I thought I had it all worked out, it was as simple as saying, "I'm sorry."

At some point, I stopped fearing thoughts of God and started to doubt.

I wanted proof that he existed and proof that he could change things.

I wanted to know how he could be merciful and let people starve,

How we could make a difference just by having Gospel sings.

I stopped going to church and putting money into the plate,

But I never stopped believing in a higher power than I knew.

I just wanted to understand how this could all be one big plan,

If no one knew how long they'd be here or what they were sent to do.

Now I'm older and my faith is stronger than it ever was,

It's carried me through so many trials that I have lost track.

When I've been at my very lowest point, a gift would come to me,

I might have gotten off the course but now I'm headed back.

I don't preach fire and brimstone to my children when we talk.

I tell them about the others who have already come and passed away,

In the hopes that they will never fear death the way I did as a child,

For though I cling to life, it will be my turn to leave here someday.


Dianna 2003



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