This is Part 6 of my personal reflection series 35 years a saint. You can read my introduction here.
God is in the business of saving souls. He doesn’t want any to perish, his word says. Many skeptics will presume and assert that if that were the case he would visibly appear in all his glory individually to every soul on the planet, or at least display miraculous messages in the sky. Well-known physicist and atheist Lawrence Krauss has implied that if “I looked up tonight and I saw the stars rearrange themselves [to] say, ‘I am here’” he would believe.
But God is not as flashy as all that and he has good reasons not to be. Instead, his modus operandi is to create a universe of billions of galaxies ex nihilo, tweak it to an incomprehensible precision to support life, bring forth life of such beauty and complexity that “biologists must constantly keep in mind that what they see was not designed, but rather evolved,” become flesh and live among us to help us know him even better, give us his Spirit when we turn to him in faith, and bring Spirit-filled believers together with spiritual seekers to tell them about himself.
Worked for me.
When I went to visit my Spirit-filled neighbor while her little boy was recovering from getting run over, I had reached the point in my quest where I knew what I was seeking was of a spiritual nature. And I could see that her faith was so much more than what dictated where she should be on Sunday mornings or what box to check on a survey. I’m sure I had met others previously with faith like that but they didn’t attract me because I wasn’t seeking then. But once I came to see that I was lacking something very important and I was no longer confident in the truth of what I had professed to believe, I was like an atom picking up electrons with every existential question so that I became drawn to the positivity of a lived-out faith.
Though throughout the months of my searching I was mostly awash in confusion and hesitancy, once I knew what I was looking for I became almost laser-focused. So that my neighbor and I were probably not ten minutes into our visit when I said to her, “I’d like you to share your faith with me.” Gimme’ some of that stuff I’m missing. You’ve got what I’m after and I want it too. Lay it on me, sister….I’m all ears.
Well, I didn’t actually vocalize those last three statements, but I did come right out and ask her to tell me about her faith. Which she was more than happy to do, because that’s how God works. Though God is everywhere and could appear to me in a vision or dream (which he reportedly often does in Muslim countries), he is more likely to speak through his children, whether it’s in one-on-one conversations; a preacher on a street corner, in a church, or a packed auditorium; or the sincere but sometimes stumbling recollections of a beggar blogger who wants to tell other beggars where to find food.
This post here has more details about that last leg of my quest from determination to destination. But once I became a child of God I realized there were brand new and beautiful vistas to explore and an infinite treasure trove of truth to mine. So I laced up my hiking boots and set off on a new quest of discovery.
And I know you can’t wait to read about it… 😉
This is an excellent, compelling, well-written series, Caroline. Thank you for pouring your heart and soul into these posts – I love reading!
Thanks so much for the encouragement, Beth. I enjoy reliving it all. 🙂 God is good.