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Let me first off introduce myself. I am Christina. I am 23 and happily married to Keven. We have 2 children Brandon (2) and Samantha (3 weeks)
I found this board a few days ago and was intrigued. Below is an entry from my blog and it sums up everything pretty well. Any advice is greatly appreciated and I am not sure if I should be here or not so I am leaving that up to you..
I am wanting to convert to Judaism. I was told to get in touch with the local congregation and to speak to the Rabbi...Well northwest Arkansas does not have a very large jewish community and I have talked to the student rabbi on a few occasions...about a year ago. I met with some local people that converted and decided that I would take a year to truly soul search and decide if this is what is best for me. I have avoided major discussion about it because I do not want to be swayed by anyone but myself. Well it has been over a year. . . And I am approaching the date that I set to make a decision. My choices are:
A) Go forth with the conversion process
B) take another 6 months to learn and to think and meditate on it
C) give it up completely and move on or
D) be no further along than I was a year ago
I know C and D are out...and B is quickly slipping
I have asked myself the following questions:
Why do I wish to convert?
I want to be part of the community that I feel an affinty for. I feel a connection spiritually and emotionally. I want to spend a life time learning about the life cycle and G-d. I want to feel that fulfiment I experienced at that first shabbos dinner throughout my every day life..
Can I lead a devout jewish life?
Yes, with support and understanding and a desire to learn more I know I can. It will be very difficult and I will stumble..but with a supportive community I think I can do it
Will I raise my children as jews and to keep a jewish home?
Will my family support my decision?
Yes, my parents may have reservations at first...but it is my life. My husband supports me in anything I need/want to do and will do whatever he needs to do to support me in that
Am I ready to embark on a lifelong change? And a process that will take a lifetime?
Yes. I feel that I have been on this path for many years and I know I will always be adding to my knowledge and always learning and experiencing it. I am eager for it
Can I give up the teachings of my youth and break from the family religion?
I was raised in a "Christian" family...however we never went to church as a family, it was more of a secular upbringing
I know the answers to all of these...yet it is hard to form into words...I know in my heart that I am a happy and excited about this...Wether or not I will ever be accepted into the jewish community as such or not. .. I will always see my self in the same boat if you will. I want to be accepted but even if I am not...I plan to lead a jewish life...I just don't exactly know how to go about that. Wether it be a life of solitude or persecution...I will be there...
I know what I believe. I know why I believe what I do...
I know there is a higher power I know G-d exists. Although I dont invision what he/she/it looks like if anything at all. I know there is only one though...one true power over all others.
I guess the problem I have always had with Christianity is that I never felt as if I was communicating with G-d. I felt like I had to go through other channels. Praying to Jesus in hopes that G-d got the message...if that makes any sense..I want my prayers to be to G-d not to his answering service.
In Exodus G-d chose the people of Israel to be the chosen ones above all others if they listened and kept his covenant.
I believe that we as humans are responsible for our own good and evil...it is up to us to chose the good..
I don'e necessarily believe in heaven and hell. Even as a child I alwas saw the afterlife differently than others... I dont think one thing will banish you to a life of fire and brimstone. But it will diminsh the light of G-d you feel...you will be further from the love and light.
I know this is off the wall and is a jumbling of nonsensical words. But you all seem to very understanding. I hope you can help....
Any advice? any one been through this or know of others that have? Is a conversion even possible?
Both my parents are jewish. My "sister" came from Poland to be a nanny for my little brother. She was catholic living with my jewish family. She got to know our traditions (reform non kosher) holidays, temple (once a month for family services) etc and I guess just fell in love with the tradiations. She decided to convert and that she only wanted to marry a jewish guy. She infact did both and is raising her 2 daughters in the jewish faith. I think the decision is up to you. The most important question is how are you and DH going to raise your children?
Dh being supportive is great but you must know what the future is for your children what are they going to be raised to believe. How are you going to handle bris, bar mitvahs weddings and holidays for your family. Iknow there are "mixed" religous families but a united front is much easier and less confuaing for the children. That is just my 2 cents.
Go with your heart. I think you know exactly what you want to do!
I would say conversion is totally possible although i knew Jews dont make it easy for you The point is that it needs to be your decision not someone trying to pressure you into something.
all I can say is that if you choose to belong you are 100% welcome here [/b]
I totally agree
Also... How close are you to Tulsa?? My family is there and I have a Rabbi there who I completely trust and adore. He has been so helpful in my own searches and struggles and I would be happy to give you his name and contact information if you would like to speak with someone else.
__________________ My boys are beautiful and look forward to meeting the new member of our family