Friday, May 11, 2007

My Testimony

Lost till age 7. At age 7 at a Christian summer camp called Hickory Hill I had my 1st encounter with God. After a campfire kids were asked to stay if they had any questions. Somehow, this is the question that slipped into my mind that night. I believe it was also the 1st time I thought abstractly. I asked “where does the universe end? It seems to me sitting here tonight that it goes on and on, and if it ends and there is a brick wall or something you could chisel through that and it still wouldn’t really end.” They couldn’t answer my question, so they told me the Romans road, which I didn’t believe but it was obvious they couldn’t answer my question and wouldn’t let me go to bed till I said “the sinners prayer” and so I did. It didn’t stick. At age 16 I was suicidal and atop a pine tree in my back yard I told God to show-up by the end of the summer or I would kill myself. I was very serious. The next day I shoplifted ‘mere Christianity’ from the drug-store, and went back the next few days to steal ‘the screwtape letters,’ and finally ‘the abolition of man.’” By the end of the summer I was a deist, returned the books, and went back up to the top of the pine tree. I didn’t hear a voice, but something inside me said “go to church.” And so I did. Sometime that autumn I was rescued-converted-saved-regenerated by Jesus. I don’t have a date and time, my story doesn’t work like that. I became a standard issue Baptist ultra fundamentalist for a spell, brush cut and a suit, full of clich├ęs and judgmentalism. However, I did learn some great theology. It was all head till age 25. I stuffed myself full of knowledge and ran after degrees hoping that would be the answer. If fundamentalism answered everything with morality, evangelicalism answered it all with knowledge. Both had foundational pieces but I was looking for more. A W Tozer and Richard Foster opened the other doors for me. For a season I spent a lot of time in both the contemplative and charismatic traditions of Christianity. As the last 10 years have unfolded God has taken all of this and put together how I am made and how I enjoy and do relationship with God. I think like an evangelical; feel like a contemplative; and am seeking to act in both the morality of the holiness movement as well as the compassion of the social justice movement. Each of the doors I have opened is a part of my ancient/future faith. I was postmodern before the vogue hit. I could talk forever about what God has done relationally in me, but perhaps that is for another day. Sufficed to say…I am more in-love with Him every day.



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