My friend Dory recently wrote:
This year has been transitional for me, and I hope I’m not nearly done yet. I have deliberately stepped back from everything I thought I knew about traditional Christianity, racial divide, politics, racial bias, the meaning of freedom, and the response of the church to government oppression. I have asked God to let His light be the only light shining on these issues for me. It’s been eye-opening, and has called for the dismantling of some ideals I’ve held most of my life. It’s confusing. It’s unpleasant. It’s not easy.
Lastly, if shining God’s light in an unbiased way into the deepest parts of your heart scares you, as it did me, it’s probably a good sign that it’s time to do it.
I appreciate Dory’s honest expression of faith and discovery here. And I can’t help but think that, if we were all just a bit more self-aware, and if we would all just shut up instead of scattering our opinions around on social media and elsewhere about what’s happening in the world and acting like we’re experts about it, then maybe this pandemic year could be a year of true revival and transformation in our lives.
Dory’s courage to look in the mirror, to “step back” and recognize that she only “thought she knew” the “truths” she had received, and to go further — to “dismantle ideals she held for most of her life” — well, what can I say? How I wish more of us could grasp that this is the path of faith rather than the way of certainty most of us imagine! Embracing doubt rather than doubling down — imagine that!
In Mere Churchianity, Michael Spencer wrote:
Jesus wanted the life of his disciples to grow out of Kingdom-of-God soil. That Kingdom takes root in the lives of disciples who were changed by the gospel. While signing up to take a discipleship class can give believers a plan for reading the Bible and many helpful ideas on prayer, your relationship with God grows uniquely in the soil that is your journey through life. Jesus meets you at places that are meaningful to you; he speaks to you as an individual, and he grows his influence in you in unique ways. You aren’t defined by anyone else’s map of the Christian life, even if those maps might be helpful in some ways. (p. 158)
Thanks, Dory, for sharing how Jesus met you at places that are meaningful to you.
It reminded me to take a look at my own “map” once again.