I feel more and more compelled to write this blog everyday. I don’t really know what it is that I feel compelled to write, I do know that everywhere I go, I see a scene in my mind. I mentally note and reason as if I were putting thoughts down on paper.
In addition to that I’ve been feeling this emptiness in my life, which I attribute to the lack of spirituality in my life. I’ve been having a discussion with one of my nephews lately about this very subject.
I feel compelled to write about my journey to get closer to God; how I got here, and where (I think) I’m going…
I have been an on again off again Christian throughout my life. I went through my rebellious phase where I was absolutely certain that there was no God, that it was just too improbable and impossible for God to exist. I also explored other belief systems and religions. There were a few (quite a few now that I sit back and think about it) situations I found myself in that I don’t think I could have got out of if the world was just left to chance and we were all just a complex set of chemical reactions.
More and more I feel like God wants me to be somewhere (but where?), and learn something (what?). That’s what my journey is about. Finding out how to have a relationship with God that is so powerful and transforming that I would gladly give my life for my faith!
I (mistakenly) believed Catholics, specifically Roman Catholics, to be the oldest form of Christianity and began my journey there. I didn’t understand a lot of what I was learning about the Catholics faith, and was very uncomfortable there. I later found myself at a Lutheran Church. The experience there was very different from that of the Catholic church, however knowing what I know of Martin Luther, and how he removed books of the bible (I want to discuss this in a later post), I didn’t get the impression that this was the right path to God (I gave it a couple of years…).
So where to go? How to do it? It felt like my old cynical teenager mind was coming back to haunt me again. I felt as if Christianity was forked into two prongs: Catholicism and Protestantism. I knew from what little research I had done that Protestantism is false (to an extent), I turned back to research Catholicism. In researching the history of the Catholic church, I came across an event called the Great Schism. The Great Schism was a fork itself between the Greek Orthodox Church (who claims apostolic succession) and the Roman Catholic Church (who claim their Church is built upon the bones of St. Peter). This is good, I have more information, and we all know that more information helps us make better decisions.
I went to a Greek Orthodox church for some time. I felt that of all the churches I’ve been to, of all the denominations and nuances, the Greek (or Eastern) Orthodox Church was the closest to the original message of Christ Jesus.
I still have some more research to do as this is where my journey has left me. I have some issues with the Greek Orthodox Church in that it was very exclusive, which was a shock to me. I was confused. I expected the Greek people, the people that have been worshiping God the same way for two thousand years to be more welcoming. Don’t get me wrong, there were many people that made use feel loved and wanted to share their love of God with us; however, the majority of the people there seemed very put off that I would show up at all since I was not an Orthodox Christian. My confusion was further compounded when I realized how very close they were (the closest I’ve experienced) to the way the apostles were taught to worship (more on that topic in a different blog entry), and yet there was such little love…
I began to feel disheartened, that I would never find a path to God, and was starting to doubt again if this path of spirituality was indeed the right one at all!
It is up to each one of us to make a decision for ourselves, and I was no exception. My current research leads me to the time period between the death of Jesus and the formation of the Greek Orthodox Church. I have only begun to research this area so there is little to report.
I just wanted to get a quick summary of my sojourn to find God. I know I have a long road ahead of me, and much to learn. Perhaps the journey is the destination…