Monday, July 7, 2014

I have no horse.

Many Christians can point to the salvation moment, that single point in time when they were reborn in the spirit, their own Damascus road experience.  I've told the simple version of the story before. Mine was not a single moment but a long process in which I stubbornly held onto the reins against loved ones and circumstances as they repeatedly swung at me like branches and pushed and scrapped at me like a thick forest brush.  I clung steadfastly to my high horse insisting I was too smart for religion.  Then like slowly waking from a dream that seem so very real I began to realize that there was no horse beneath me.  I was just in the thick brush clinging to nothing but my own pride.

I never have expounded on that description, perhaps because no audience has asked me to, or more likely, that I nor any audience cared for the sharing of uncomfortable details.  Since all the specific incidents are really far too numerous due to my painfully slow learning curve, I will continue to spare us both of much of it.  Those who love me can share story after story to attest to my stubbornness.  I was always the cynic and looked for the rational explanation dismissing everything as coincidence.

From a young age I was curious about the meaning of life and why we are all here.  I felt that I could really only trust myself and my own reasoning. I thought I could find the answers to life's questions if they could be found.  I had been jaded by all the contradictions and hypocrisy of religious organizations. All the church had proven to me is that they could not possibly hold the answers.  I considered all philosophies though finding at least some truth in most of them, but none held the whole truth.  None held an explanation of everything that could stand up to reason, (my reason.)  I had pretty  much resigned myself to the idea that there was no answer, that we as humans, could not possibly ever know the meaning of life.

So you see then the picture of me, like Saul, on my high horse striking down the Christians in my life, trampling over anything or anyone who could not stand up to my reasoning.  Then see me knocked from my horse, albeit much much more slowly, and even mercifully stricken blind for a while so that I would not immediately see that path that I had wrought. Now you may see me as if I am still riding high but I can assure you that if it appears so, it is because His grace has lifted me just out of reach of the daemons of regret that would devour me as I look back at all the hurt I have caused my loved ones and worse, the deeply trodden path I've made that cause others to fall into the same footsteps.

As for as picturing me like Paul, you may, in that once I released my reliance on my own reasoning, I now have a much greater understanding of the meaning of life than I even thought was possible.  And like with Paul, God uses every single situation in my life to continue to grow that understanding and knowledge of Him, albeit much much more slowly.

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