Sunday, August 28, 2011

The State of My Faith Two Years After Leaving the Church

Today marks the two year anniversary of my "retirement" from American Christianity and institutionalized religion. While I may have left professional ministry, I did not leave the pursuit of authentic faith and believing in Jesus. Much to the confusion of friends, family and often myself, I have not been to a local church service since.

Sundays for me include sleeping in till 7:30, reading my favorite blogs, perhaps even blogging a bit myself reading the Bible and generally reflecting on life and God. I would call this a true Sabbath. This is effectively detoxing me of a virus that has so deeply affected me. I continue to ask questions and evaluate existing perspectives that I have grown up with by virtue of being an American and being a Christian in this culture. While it appears that some would see this process as a threat to healthy faith, I am finding it to deepen and strengthen it. I am embracing a descent into authenticity rather than the culturally influenced perspective (which I once believed and preached with noble but poorly founded intentions) of ascending to greater heights of faith and practice.

By leaving the "bubble", I am discovering the breadth of life that exists and the places of "ministry" where it seems that God is most active based on a better reading of Scripture.

I can't say where I'll be in another calendar year but I am resolved to rest in the process that has been initiated by God and continues to be affirmed by an inner witness of tha Spirit. Philippians 1:6 comes to mind. Instead of me working at the development of a closeness to God, I am traveling a precarious path that invites me to let go- to die to myself. This is not how I was raised or what I was taught so this isnquite challenging. But it is also liberating.

Based on my current life situation, I would attest that whom Jesus sets free is truly free and that truth in Jesus is liberating indeed.