In 2019 I started a spiritual journey. I was in Puerto Morelos, a small fishing town in Mexico at a retreat to dream. The REAL reason I was there (I see now) was to be in the company of people who let me ask the hard questions without getting defensive.
- How do you know that your daughters’ faith isn’t inherited?
- Who the heck would sacrifice their child for the “free pass” of mankind’s sins? That’s just crazy pants!
- The “church people” I know are some of the most judging people that exist, how can I be expected to follow hate?
I listened to personal testimonies and felt a yearning in my gut to be “chased” by Jesus, but still wasn’t ready to commit to anything. My entire life I had watched my Mother travel the world in search of truth. I was exposed to many religions, beliefs, & spiritual practices. Even to this day, she encourages me to find my own truth within my own journey.
For the next 3 years, I dug into the Word. I was given people who lived and breathed ministry to ask all of my questions. I questioned EVERYTHING. (Even today, I am STILL asking questions.) I also looked into who Jesus was in many different religions. There became no doubt in my mind that He walked the Earth, the question was “as who”?
I then started listening for the Holy Spirit. And boy oh boy I was led! Led to people, led to opportunities, led into abundance, and led back to the Lord. I was introduced to others in seasons of wanting to dig deeper into the Word and when that season passed, I was led to a new group of people digging in a different direction. God never left me alone with nobody to ask my questions to.
In August 2021, I started thinking about baptism. I have read many conflicting opinions if you needed to be baptized to get into heaven. For me, it was a difficult decision because I never want to commit or be locked into anything without full knowledge of what I am signing up for. I’ve seen many jump into faith because they needed something it offered, only to leave it later on. I am not judging their journey, I just like to be sure and by that time in my life, I realized the depth of what I was thinking of doing.
Up until this point, I had been reading my Bible daily. Completing Bible Study after Bible Study. I Tried a few churches only to feel “unqualified”. I even attended the children’s Bible study classes when I first started because I knew NOTHING. Covid hitting was probably a blessing because so many churches went online. I was able to start my own relationship with the Lord. I was able to watch many different sermons and expand my knowledge via many sources.
I started praying. We’ve always said what we were thankful for at dinner and if I was worried about something I would pray, but this was a serious “Let’s have a cup of coffee & get to know each other” kind of praying. I shared what I loved, what I didn’t understand, and what I was excited about or wrestling with. I thanked the Lord for every single thing and reminisced or reminded myself of all the ways He already showed up in my life. I often remember the bad things people say/do, yet am very forgetful of the good and so I wanted to make sure that good was always in front of my face.
He made me laugh. Yes, our Lord above has a sense of humor.
In September 2022 I was heading back to Mexico for another dream retreat, and looking at how far I had come in 3 years was astonishing. I had been tossing around how being baptized where it all began would be poetic, yet I was still leary. The devil was chasing me and doing everything he could to prevent it from happening.
- This is a different path from my Mother~ who is the human I most respect. She spent years searching for her truth and found it, why wouldn’t I just start where she ended? She literally traveled the Earth and saw with her own eyes the representation of many spiritual practices.
- What if I change my mind. What if, like so many before me, I start to doubt and walk away.
- What about all the “Believers” who hate as much as they believe? How could I ever put myself in a situation to be associated with them? – This one stung badly.
- I had the guilt for past sins. I wasn’t worthy. (I actually confessed these out loud for the first time in my life to 4 incredible women. They didn’t run, they got closer and shared with me their pasts. This moment I will treasure forever. Thank you, ladies)
- I have researched more than most.
- I know within the love I crave and it is from HIM.
- I am whole, alone. He will never forsake me & will use my life for good.
- I have surrendered myself, the well-being of my children, and where I am placed in this world to Him.
Then I prayed. I shared my desire to get baptized, but I needed it to be okay in my head – away from hate, judgment, and the ignorance that so many claim as their faith.
God showed up.
I was talking to the man at the retreat who was ordained about what I was wrestling with & I find out a woman at the retreat was also ordained.
She loves Jesus. She loved hearing what each person at the retreat had to say as if they were the only other person in the room. She validated and empowered. She reminded me so much of my Momma. She was love. She is love, and she LOVES the Lord. She also is a lesbian. Although that is an irrelevant fact to me, it is important because it brings my spiritual journey full circle. It was the final gift from the Lord above to say:
“It’s okay Tiffany, you can do this now. Here is the last piece of my “all-acceptance” you needed to bring it all together and I welcome you into my family.”
It had nothing at all to do with her, but with me… being so wrapped up in the hate I see out there. I’m not writing for a debate of what is right or wrong, just testifying that in order for me to “sign up” I didn’t want to have to hate. Non-negotiable.
I walk into my newfound relationship with the Lord with pure LOVE. He is LOVE. We are Love. We are all his children and I chose love.
I’ve been internally struggling with sharing this because I know so many of you will disagree. But I am not here to fight. I am here to love. I am here to share. I give my battles to the Lord. He fights for me now. I just pray. (Watch the movie “War room“) and you will see what I mean).
This is my story. My Spiritual Journey.