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Spiritual Sherpa Time

Recently, I picked up Not God’s Type (Holly Ordway).

Ordway is a self-described academic and atheist who begins exploring the idea that God and Christianity are true things. As she researches and delves into these concepts, their implications and the feelings they provoke in her, she describes an excitement and clarity that I related to quite strongly.

I have had an awareness of and personal connection to God from the time I was 11 years old. Most of the time, I think writing is a fantastic way to communicate. However, words simply don’t do some things justice. Or at any rate, my words don’t! They can make an experience that felt powerful and electric seem… benign or cliché or boring… in short, like less than it was. Therefore, I won’t relate that extremely personal memory here. Anyway, for a few years after discovering this connection, I approached life differently. I was, it seems to me now, constantly in prayer and I thought deeply and ceaselessly about life’s mysteries. Apart from these few months that I’ve been a mother, that was the most fulfilling period in my life. I seldom make the effort to consider things deeply anymore, and I’m a little ashamed of that.

I’ve always been intensely interested in theology, but have never studied it with any consistency or discipline. Particularly now that I have a daughter, I feel the need to be able to state my beliefs concisely and, as much as possible, back them up with objective arguments. I know myself well enough to know that independent study would not be the best way to achieve this, so my first step is finding a guide.

I haven’t been to church in years, and I know that going back will be difficult, but I feel like it’s time. My biggest mental road block when it comes to church is inflexible doctrine. The challenge for me now is going to be approaching those tenets from an objective standpoint.  In other words – whether I like a specific tenet isn’t important. The question I should be asking is – “Is there truth in this?” I know that by choosing to study led by a specific church, I won’t get an unbiased education, but I’m okay with that. I already believe in God, I just need some help sorting out the details.

Now to find the right guide…

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One thought on “Spiritual Sherpa Time

  1. As your mother-in-law I find it exciting that you are renewing and searching for a relationship with God. I find you very brave to actually post your feelings where others can see them. I always thought I had a relationship with God or Jesus, and I think I did, but just not a personal one. After praying for several years for peace to come into my heart and God allowing my eyes to be opened, which He did (“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.” Ephesians 1:18-19a NASB) I have been able to truly begin my relationship and walk with Jesus Christ as my Savior. Each day I ask Him to to be a part of my day and every day I lift up each one of my children, their spouses, and my five beautiful grandchildren. I also ask for His wisdom when I open my Bible. If you pray for understanding and a relationship with Jesus, I believe and have experienced that this is possible.

    I look forward to delving into questions and to see what the Bible teaches and how each person will probably have a slightly different understanding of the different verses. What has helped me in studying is trying not to take verses out of context, looking at the history of the chapter, who is writing the chapter and who it was directed to and go from there. I find that when I read the Bible, I need to read, and reread the chapter, sometimes several times before understanding, and then there are so many verses that are so poignant like John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”

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