Uncomfortable Faith


I wrote the this poem after being confirmed in my Community of Christ congregation in December 2016. I discussed my faith transition with Brittany Mangelson on the Project Zion podcast.

Uncomfortable Faith

I saw the blessing and confirmation of friends.
I waited
After a few months of waiting,
I made a plan to wait
Six more months.
Waiting felt comfortable.
I needed to be sure.

Comforted by waiting,
I waited.

Confirmation approached.
I felt uncomfortable, anxious.
Unofficially committed and comfortable,
Coming to an uncomfortable close.
I was sure
I needed more waiting.

On the day
In the service
My former pastor spoke of faith.
I knew I had been avoiding faith
But confirmation was an act of faith.
I wanted to be sure, which is faithless,
Comfortable being in-between and officially unofficial.

Faith had been waiting for me,
God had been waiting for me,
To move past my Mormon certainty
Into the unknowingness of faith,
Into a life of discomfort.

Nancy Ross

Nancy Ross is an art history professor by day and a sociologist of religion by night. She lives in St. George, Utah with her husband and two daughters and co-hosts the Faith Transitions podcast.

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5 Responses

  1. Aimee says:

    This is so moving, Nancy. It reminds me of one of my favorite quote about faith: “The opposite of faith isn’t doubt, but certainty.” Stepping into the darkness of the unknown can be the ultimate act of faith. Thank you for sharing this with us.

  2. spunky says:

    Thank you for sharing this, Nancy. <3

  3. Violadiva says:

    I think I’ve come to accept the idea that we’re doing life wrong if we’re always comfortable. Please keep us posted about what happens next!

  4. Olea says:

    Nancy, I really like knowing things, but you pull me into remembering that not-knowing is where the growth lies. It hurts, in such a good way – because it reminds me that I need to offer a broken heart and a contrite spirit, which is hard, painful work, but has been so worth it in my life.

    Thank you for sharing this.

  5. Tyler says:

    Nancy. I loved reading this and I really resonated with the last stanza.
    “To move past my Mormon certainty
    Into the unknowingness of faith,
    Into a life of discomfort.”

    For me, I took the word discomfort not as a bad thing… but still a very real feeling. Going from certainty and and someone always giving you a final word on what it right to being allowed to choose your own right.

    I have been a member of C. of Christ for 2 years, from being LDS… but I resonate with these feelings so much. Thanks.

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