I thought it was God talking, but it just turned out to be gas!

GodWhen I moved to Washington almost 5 years ago I would have told you it was because this is where God wanted me to be.  There was little doubt in mine or Amy’s mind that God was sending us from Texas to the great Northwest!  Well if this has been part of God’s plan then it was poorly thought out.  Yes, we have made some incredible friends here and absolutely love the culture and beauty that surrounds us, but little has gone right for us financially, mentally, physically, and even spiritually.

I only write this because It is my form of therapy, and helps me process it, but it has truly been one disappointment after another.  And being a former pastor I know all of the amazing clichés that can be tossed my way like, “God didn’t promise us things would be easy, God puts us through trials to strengthen our faith, & God is there during the storms.”  What people don’t like to think about is the fact that maybe…just maybe God had nothing to do with the decision. It is possible that what I thought was God guiding or speaking to me was nothing more than wishful thinking, or gas from a bad plate of lasagna.

Let me give you a great example of what I’m talking about in this blog laced with sarcasm and discouragement.  About a year ago I was talking with a lady who informed me that God had used the Wolf’s station vehicle to speak to her (100.7 The Wolf).  She said that she was praying about her pastor, whom she thought was a “Wolf in sheep’s clothing”, and then she saw our vehicle pull up next to her!  And she knew at that moment that God was communicating with her.  So she then likely went to the elders of her church to get rid of the Wolf (aka pastor).

I’m not here to say that God does or doesn’t communicate with us, but I have learned that I need to be very careful when I think God is speaking to me or others.  I have never heard an audible voice, but I’ve been thinking…He is God so if He really wanted me to know something wouldn’t it be loud and clear?  I just believe that there are more times in life where people believe they are following God when in reality He is following them, and He is likely thinking, “Why in the world would he think I wanted him to do this?”

Advertisements

Questioning God in Midlife

exit-from-crisis-signI spend a lot of time talking about spiritual issues with men and women that are around my age.  And many say that they came to a point where they began to ask their selves if their spiritual beliefs were real.  Meaning, did they truly believe what they said they did about God, or were they simply carrying on a family tradition. So many of us began to dig a little deeper into our spiritual minds, souls, and brains.

It no longer felt right to say we believed something, because mommy, daddy, and the preacher said it was true.  And what about the bible?  Do we really believe that all of mankind is cursed with illness, death, and sin because a woman listened to a talking snake and then ate a piece of fruit? Would God really send a flood that would kill moms, babies, and everyone else by drowning them, but spare Noah who ended up getting drunk and having sex with his own daughter?

It was strange to me, because when I was a pastor I didn’t often think about those questions, and if I did I would simply say, “Gods ways are not our ways.”  Translation for that is, “I don’t want to look too deep into that question, because I may not like the answer.”  But there came a day when sweeping my questions under the Christian rug didn’t work.  I knew that it would be uncomfortable, but I had to get some real answers and examine my faith.

I realize that for some of you this may sound blasphemous or sinful.  And if you feel that way you will probably hate my blogs, but I hope you will stick around.  My point is not to be critical of scripture by any means, but to say that some of us begin to struggle with just having blind faith.  We can’t ignore the contradictions we see in the bible, the unjust ways in which many suffer, and the lack of integrity among the many that profess to have great faith.  For some they can just continue on, and pretend that none of the above exists, and others will need more clarity.  I was one who took the leap, and what I was about to learn would literally scare the hell out of me.

My leap of faith or leap into the lack of faith started by reading everything I could that was written by…ready for it…atheist or agnostics.  And I watched YouTube videos of Christopher Hitchens & Richard Dawkins attempting to discredit scripture and creationism. I downloaded podcasts from former pastors who now consider themselves to be “deconverted.”  And before I give you my thoughts on these interesting characters let me backup.  I want to tell you one of the things that really made me want to take a look at the other side of the holy hedges.

I work with a young man that is absolutely the nicest guy you could ever meet.  He is always polite, thoughtful, respectful, and has an incredible work ethic.  He is faithful to his wife, and loves her dearly.  In Christian terms you would say he seems to walk in the spirit of God…a very positive energy surrounds him.  And he is from part of the “bible belt” so I just assumed he was a Christian.  WRONG!  I was in a conversation with one of his close friends that informed me that Mr. Nice Guy is an agnostic.  I was shocked!  Because I was well into my adult years thinking most atheist and agnostics were people who never smiled and were miserable.  And this guy was far from miserable.  In fact he seems so happy that it can be annoying!  So how could someone who didn’t believe in Christ be more Christlike than most Christian people I know (including me)?  How can someone give off the Holy Spirit vibe if they don’t have him, she, or it?  At one time in my life I had preached that these people were lost and living in darkness, and now I wanted to see if they had actually been the ones to “see the light!”

In my upcoming blog posts I will share with you where this journey has lead me in my faith.

TO BE CONTINUED…

PLEASE SUBSCRIBE TO MY BLOG YOU SEXY DEVIL!