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Church News

Temple Talk from February 10: Tina Clayton

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Hi there and good morning to those you might not know me I am Tina Clayton.  Just a few seconds of background to get to today and my purpose for standing up here.  I have moved 31 times.  I have been involved in a church my entire life and this is the first Lutheran Church I have had the pleasure of being a part of. 

Very simply put, I am a 30 years child, teen, young adult and full-grown adult with 2 children – victim of multiple myriads of abuse.  I did not know until after I had my second child, Kristen, that I had been surviving with anxiety and acute PSTD.  It started at 5 and I was then 36.  The good Lord obviously had been there for me in a way only he could understand.

To this day, my life is a technique in coping…From the beginning, church was a comfort to me because I was reminded that I was a child of God, and if only I believed I would be safe.  Still as n intelligent and understanding adult, to let go and let God – to give up the little control I have fought so long to maintain – is a hard one for me.

It takes a lot of courage for me (to this day) to step out beyond my doors on a daily basis.  Gods gift of voice, to me, in a group setting that has conversations with and about the heart and soul, drags me out… my first direction being the Church.  As scared as I always am (and was two years ago) – a friend had suggested that I try a Lutheran Church.  When I walked up to the door on that Tuesday afternoon, there was Kathryn – what a wonderful soul – She said Hi and took me on a tour.  She was inviting and warm.  It felt good.  I came to Lenten service the next day and basically threw myself at the choir and they opened their arms and caught me so I wouldn’t fall, bringing this always scared, desperate child under their wings without a clue of who I was. 

When I needed to move out of a bad situation, Cheryl and Ted and company (small group) were at my doorstep to take me wherever I needed to go.  Before I knew it, I was in my new little safe place…being a congregation of action, they were gentle and very loving. 

Everyday takes courage for me to mobilize and go.  I have found that peace with God, yet, where I do not feel alone, but, being around this congregation has been ultimately important in helping me move that direction.  Your actions speak as loud as your words. I am just one small voice.  The soul of music has always been the root of my spirituality with God and my survival from day to day; sometimes moment to moment.  This Church is/ This Congregation is/ the musical conversation/ the accountability to others/ - to paying it forward.  The get to… on a daily basis.  It is here…I am not the only “frightened child” out there.  I thank God for every one of you.