While I'm Drifting - 11/14/2018

Earthlings, I’m excited to announce that I got new music coming this November! I have my vessel, Joshua Luna on the site to give you the backstory and heart behind this new song. It’s a vulnerable one, and I let him get some stuff off his chest. I think the song is dope as hell. Now I’ll him finish the rest of this. - ML

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I’m not eloquent with my words and this may end up being a long story but to present the origins behind Mars Luna’s new song, I’ll start here. As a kid, I was raised by a mother who’s Pentecostal and a father who’s “Catholic” (and I mean that in a very loose manner). I became aware of God when my parents separated and I spent a majority of my early teenage years being angry, resentful and miserable. I was bitter towards God and even if he wanted to rescue me from my darkness, I wasn’t allowing it cause I had numerous questions that needed answers.

During my senior year in high school, I went to my high school’s “Fellowship camp” at the urging of one of my friends because I was depressed and I wanted to end my life. At the camp, the message that was preached was 1 Corinthians 13, the infamous “love passage”. I don’t really remember much else from the camp itself but I gained a moment of clarity with God on the bus ride back to the school. All the students on the bus were singing songs to Jesus and I saw how joyful they were. I wanted that same joy they were feeling. I thought that their joy was from Jesus, so I became “saved” and started looking for a church. Little did I know what this faith journey would lead to. It led me to three churches, two states, one bible school and being on the worship team at all of them in the span of six years. Going down the rabbit hole of Christian culture led me to deconstruct and depart from everything I believed in and start from square one, which is the season I’m in now.

I’m not gonna lie, I always wanted to belong and be accepted. No matter what stage of life I was in, I always felt misunderstood, and I believed I was a misfit. That was an obstacle I couldn’t seem to overcome and in the Christian community, I should’ve felt at home, but I didn’t. I’m NOT trying to throw shade at anyone. It has more to do with CLARITY and HONEST RE-EXAMINATION. I remember the subtle pressures to “be good enough” to be accepted as a “Christian”. I remember presenting myself a certain way for the church and pretending to have it all together when “grace” of all things was preached on Sundays. I remember once being told to turn my shirt inside out because the graphic on it was offensive to the congregation and the message on it was rebuked. I was a new believer and new to the church at the time. At my first church, I remember being interviewed by my pastors when I wanted to get baptized and I felt like I had to answer their questions the right way in order to proceed. At my second church, I remember when the last worship pastor I was under tried to copyright “original” music that wasn’t his and wanting to use it for the church’s EP without permission. I remember times when I went to church feeling like I was being “used” for my musical abilities. I remember being condemned for being “wrong” all the time when I was in bible school. I remember carrying a “hero complex” when I evangelized and led in church. I remember when I let my initial zeal get the best of me. I remember when I inadvertently pushed some of my closest friends away because of “the gospel”. I remember when I invited my Mom to church and they ended up pushing her away. I remember people in small groups saying that they’ll pray for me, but I never felt the weight of their prayers. I remember when one of my best friends from high school passed away from cancer in 2016. It was a sad time. Years before her death, I told her about Jesus, or the Bible’s version of him. She believed in a different religion, and she didn’t believe in Christianity when she passed. She was a Baha’i. Did she end up in hell? Is she in heaven? To be honest, I’d like to believe she’s in a better place, but I wasn’t sure and I never received answers. There’s a lot to process beyond the surface. For many reasons, “Christianity” left me wounded and I’m still recovering, but I’m leaving Christian culture with no regrets and no beef.

My current situation with God is that I believe he’s real, but it feels like he’s been very distant. That’s alright. In this season, I’m learning that it’s okay to doubt, and that I don’t need to have all the answers right now. I’m learning about what it truly means to love others, to love those who are different from you, to love your enemies and that you don’t need to be religious in order to do those things well. I also learned that I don’t need to be a “Christian” in order to love God. I’ve lost touch with some people that I was close to when I was a “Christian”, but I’m grateful for the people who’ve stuck around and still remained friends. Life after Christianity can be lonely sometimes, but I’m surrounded by real ones who are understanding, caring, supportive and loving individuals. They inspire me to be the best human I can possibly be and throughout the uncertainty, I’m now in a better place in all areas of life. I’m able to truly be myself and I’m able to grow freely, without any restrictions.

Just a disclaimer before I close this thing out, I’m currently a worship leader at a church in Downtown Las Vegas, and I’m grateful that they love me unconditionally through the season I’m in. They’ve showed me that there are exceptions to the norm and I’m grateful to be in a good situation. With everything being said, that’s the context for Mars Luna’s next song, “Drift” and it will be released on November 14. It’s probably one of my favorite songs and I can’t wait for you readers to hear it. If God is listening, I know he’ll save me while I drift away, and I know he’s there even while I’m drifting. To everyone who was hurt by Christian culture (or God) in any way, this song is for you. This song is for everyone who ever felt like they had to believe in order to belong. If you feel like you’re drifting, I want you to know that you aren’t alone and I hope you find the healing you’re looking for.

Thank you,
Joshua Luna