I lost Jesus at 14 when the woman I loved most in this world was ripped from my heart. In typical teenage fashion, I needed someone to blame. Instead of the eighteen-wheeler.
The truth is that I didn’t trust God anymore. What kind of world kills your grandmother (and her three best friends) on the way to a fundraiser?
In the absence of His love and that of my grandmother’s and aunties, I found myself a man; But in the end I couldn’t trust him either. Neither did my own father remain steadfast in his love. Those years were swollen with pain, as I watched my family splinter, until there was little left upon which I could rest my faith.
After I gave up on God, two of my younger sisters took up with him–in that boorish, effusive way of the freshly born again. Their new-found love, only made me feel lonelier. Their certainty that Jesus belonged to them, left me wondering how he was ever my friend.
In my twenties, I came to Al-Anon, and there I began dating my “Higher Spirit,” who remained faceless, and who never quite hit the spot like the man in robes with penetrating eyes and long, sandy hair. It would be decades before I came to peace without a spirit lover, and until then I searched for him in many faiths.
When I finally found what I was looking for, it wasn’t in a chapel or a temple or even a women’s circle, it was… in the music. On the night before my beloved grandfather’s funeral–the man who lost his wife to the tragedy that stole God, my born-again sister handed me some music that she was ready to discard.
While The New Jersey Mass Choir seemed right up her holy alley, I was beginning to understand that there was a hierarchy among Christians which placed Catholics below the born-again. My sister saved my soul that night, though not in the way she had always wanted.
When the soloist delivered Jesus to me in her rich, sultry tones, it didn’t matter that my passion made no sense.
When the storms in my life are raging. When the weight of this world drives me to my knees… I found a Hiding Place…
I felt the love that had once been mine.
I reclaimed Spirit then, in every song and sound, no matter whence it sprang.
Allah, Yahweh, Jesu, Krishna, Shakti, Earth, Water, Sky, Home.
With music–and now movement–I make sacred the mystery of this journey we call life, without needing to know why.
Kelly Salasin, Vermont
ps. Special mention goes out to my two beloved, born-again sisters with whom I share an ever-expanding communion in the Mystery that transcends understanding.