Trying to find the words to express my heart has been difficult. I have so much I want to share with whoever is left reading my blog. I know I lost subscribers and I’m not angry about it. Not only have I questioned many things my sisters hold as sacred, but my blog had been attacked by several viruses during our move. I had taken a break from blogging until I could get settled into our new home and along the way I completely dropped the idea of a subscription. Keeping count of the subscriptions was too frustrating. I even contemplated closing off comments, because never getting comments is a bit disheartening.
I know how to compose controversial Facebook statuses to get a conversation going and I do quite well with that. However, my blog posts don’t get any attention. I am finding my place of rest among the blog world and approach my blog as my personal journal instead of trying to create a community among readership. It just doesn’t work for me, unless I’m slamming people and I don’t want to do that. I gained momentum with controversy on Facebook, but I found myself being attacked far too much, so I reserved my Facebook page for a specific audience. What I say there, I can’t say here without getting the same attacks again. Honestly, I become weary from all the attacks from people I thought were my friends, and even worse when it’s people I have admired.
That brings me to the reason for the prayer request I posted today.
When I left a toxic environment, I had to find out who God is to me and where Jesus really fit into the big picture in my own life. I recall the day I was studying a certain version of the bible (the one I was told was the ONLY ‘real Word of God’, infallible, and absolutely perfect). I had my Hebrew and Greek translation out and while digging deep into a passage I notice error. My mind raced with horror since I was taught that the only way to know God was through his perfect book and if this book had just become fallible then where does that put me with God? I suddenly found myself feeling like I was teetering on a tightrope over a deep chasm in the earth. I seemed to ‘hear’ screams and howls that bombarded my mind with doubt and fear then this sweet still and very stable voice whispered in my heart, “we have experience, you and I”. I took a deep breath and nodded silently in my chair and my soul whispered back, “yes, indeed we do.”
It was then that I had a sense of peace and assurance that I could ask any question I wanted. I knew my soul was safe no matter what. He would never leave me for asking to know him more, to understand him better, to deepen our spiritual walk together. He would never berate me for asking hard questions about what I was taught. I gently approached different idols of belief that had been erected in my mind. I would come near to each idol and tap on it, then knock, then bump it with my hip. If it was of the Lord it would not topple, shake, or wobble at all. If it teetered, I pushed hard! Anything that is truly part of the Rock would never fall no matter how hard I pushed. When the idols began to fall and crash down into a million pieces, I heard gasp, screams, and anger from those around me. What I was doing was frightening people that didn’t understand what I was doing. My friends list on Facebook dwindled quickly, the comments on my blogs diminished rapidly, and I found myself in a desert. The adventure the Lord was taking me on was definitely for just him and I. No one else wanted to go. No one from my former circles anyway.
Along the journey he introduced me to other travelers who were wrestling with their beliefs and trying to figure out if they had real faith or just dogma. I knew how they felt. I needed to know what was truth, the kind of truth that held up against all my pushing , kicks, and screams. I had to know for myself how strong he really is and how powerful he made me to overcome the bondage I had been in for so long. I began with blaming the ones who told me those cows were sacred and with those who enabled the construction of what later became my prison bars. The problem wasn’t really with them, it was with me. I made every choice on my own. I didn’t realize that I could have said no at anytime. It was fear that kept me there. I was afraid of all the things I had escaped before, I was afraid I would fall back into those living nightmares again and lose everything I held as precious.
When he gave me freedom to challenge those sacred cows, I began to be empowered again. My faith increased and so did the confidence in the victory of the resurrected Lord. He conquered death and the grave on my behalf. Nothing could ever lead me back to those dark days and if he ever were to lead me through dark valleys, I knew he would be with me. If he stayed with me while knocking over sacred cows, he surely would be with me in dark valleys. He revealed to me the joy of knowing his unconditional love as I questioned his love and devotion. He was never offended at my questions (though many others were). He even gave me power and strength to question the most sacred tenants of the Christian religion. He never left me, he never hit me, he never yelled at me, and never threatened me. He never excommunicated me, never shunned me, and never belittled me.
He lifted me up and told me how loved I am. He reminded me of his eternal purpose. He affirmed me and confirmed the gifts he had given me. He assured me that even if I seemed to be all alone on this journey, he was with me. As painful as it has been to watch a vast majority of my friends walk away, he showed me how to really rely on him and how he really is all I need.
Now comes another hurdle, or several actually. Of those I met along the way, some rejected Jesus totally. While we had our fun knocking over sacred cows and toppling false idols, there were times when those towers fell on one another. We laughed, we cried and we picked each other up. We extended grace and offered support to one another. It doesn’t bother me that they came to different conclusions. We went through a lot together and even though we ended up with different perspectives of the adventure, I came to love them, appreciate them, and value them as human beings. They are my sisters and brothers in humanity. We don’t see eye to eye, but I admire them for the courage it took to walk away from God. Or maybe they just walked away from a false god. Some say they walked away from any and all gods! That is their freedom and while I still believe in Jesus I respect their decisions. The Jesus I know and have experienced will always love them no matter what. I have faith in him and I trust him to love them for eternity. I believe they are always going to have their souls safe in Christ. I know many will disagree with me and that’s fine too. I just have had such incredible experiences with the Lord that I cannot deny his love for me and for all humanity.
The next hurdle is this, what will my new friends say when I reveal the next part of my adventure? Will they have the same grace and support they gave me while I knocked over sacred cows with them? Or will they walk away like the others did? Maybe those who walked away before will mosey on back this way. I don’t know what will happen, but I’m taking this next adventure by faith too and we’ll just have to see what happens.
I do know this, I tasted and I see that the Lord is very, very good.
Will you come along for the journey?
Linked up with Joy’s “Life Unmasked“