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Sunday, November 1, 2009

Spiritual Instability

For ten years plus, I didn’t believe in God. Not to be confused with outright disbelief to a point of protesting against the creator, I just couldn’t find it in my heart to believe. I remember like it was yesterday sitting in Ms. Andrews 7th grade Language Arts class blatantly disregarding her lesson plan to sit perpetuated with my own ideas. And I sat contemplating why I had been forced to embody the religious beliefs of my family when it wasn’t my own conscience, willful faith. Therefore, I abandoned ship. From that day forward, I declared that I did not believe in a God. And boy oh boy was it a rocky road. But now, looking back I can say that though I hadn’t learned to acknowledge Him, I still followed in His footsteps. And my incentive was a happy heart versus a place in everlasting paradise. Funny story, I was arguing with a close homegirl who had her fair share of wild stories. We were young girls who ran together getting into trouble and burying a bone or two deep down in our closets. However, she was a believer and in discussion about God, she told me that I was as doomed as a person who believes in God and does no good. So I asked her if her God would overlook my ignorance and accept me for my heart, she denied me. So I said to hell with this God stuff. I went to a catholic high school and sat in many debates against avid believers who had all concluded in one sense or another that I was doomed. The intensity of these conversations would constantly bring me to tears for one basic reason; I was alone. Spiritual solitude is probably the greatest overwhelming feeling of loneliness. I admitted this to someone once and that person suggested I believe. As if my “religion”, or lack there of, was an on-off switch. I longed to have a spiritual connection with someone or something but always to no avail. It’s the feeling of being in a room full of people, some may love you, some may hate you, and the only thing you can focus on is the emptiness inside you. Essentially, it’s like nothing surrounding you can touch you. I was unaffected by the situations of the world. Nothing was real…

…Until April 15, 2006.

I met a kid named Chuck sometime in '99 while hanging with one of my high school class mates. I was introduced to him over a game of spades where the first card this kid threw out was a spade. We all looked and laughed. Now any spades player or even any spectator of the game KNOWS a spade is not the suit to lead off with. And I’m like, sheesh, is this my partner? Let’s just say that was the beginning to a beautiful friendship. Not to lose focus of my topic, I’ll fast forward. Tragedy occurred when Chuck was in a car accident that took his physical being from us. But what he left behind is the greatest gift a friend could give. Chuck’s funeral was at Christian Love Baptist Church where I heard a pastor speak to my heart in such a way I thought impossible. He told the story of a young man who had gotten into a car accident with his dad’s vehicle. This young, shaken man called his father while bracing himself for the disappointment. The car was described as an absolute wreck. Totaled exterior, smoking hood, windows broken. The father ordered his son to lift the hood and take a look at the inside. And to this young man’s disbelief, the engine remained unscathed. The pastor used this analogous story to demonstrate the sinner who is totaled on the outside yet the Father can see an unscathed heart and soul which goes overlooked. And with that, a person is good as new. That day I found God.

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