Well folks, if you are reading this, it is my first real attempt at a blog. I won't pigeonhole it as a political, cultural, religious, or whatever blog, rather as my attempt to talk about what's going on in the world.
There is much I could say right now about the world. Bad news, controversy, ignorance, intolerance, etc. However, I think I'll start out with something good.
I find it amazing the little twists and turns life takes. Sometimes old connections are refreshed and a friend you always fondly remembered but never stayed in contact with comes ambling back into your life, with unexpected benefits.
For me, that friend was a dude named Adam Bodendieck. A great guy to be sure, and we had some good times together in college. But after he graduated and I got married (granted for a scant eight months), we drifted apart.
Through the miracles of facebook, we reconnected. And, you will all find this shocking, I am sure, Adam had changed. I am glad to say, for the better. Not that Adam was a bad dude before mind you, but the difference in him staggered me. Now, at this point it had been well nigh 6 years since we had last spoken. In that time a change I could never have anticipated took place in Adam. See, when we were in college, I think it is fair to say that Adam was at the very least agnostic, and probably would have told you then he was a full fledged atheist. Here, six years later, Adam is a card carrying (OK, I've never seen a card) Christian. And I am thrilled for him.
When Adam and I reconnected, I was in a very dark place in my life. It seemed to me that life had become one large trash heep and I was buried at the bottom. Now, before all of you get your panties in a twist and say this sounds like a love letter (which Adam will say it does. To flash back, "I hate you, Adam"), I am just saying that, for me, his unabashed faith showed me that there is some good in this world.
It also allowed me to shine a light on my own faith. I will be honest and say at that point, it was at a very low point. You must understand, I have always believed in God. But that doesn't mean I have always had faith in Him. At that point, my faith was nearing all-time low levels. I had begun to believe that God, while real, could really give a damn about me. I started thinking to myself, "I believe in God, but that doesn't mean I have to like him." It was becoming beyond a mantra, evolving into a philosophy of life. There was a song I listened to a lot (still do, truth be told, but it's a good song, so there!) by Oasis (again, be quiet Adam) called "Falling Down." In it, there was a line that goes, "I tried to talk with God to no avail/Calling Him in and out of nowhere/Said if you won't save me please don't waste my time." I swore by that line. It became like a Psalm, a scripture, a way of life.
I have been reading Adam and his lovely wife Heather's blog, and that has helped a lot. And while I won't say my relationship with God is 100 percent perfect and healed from the low levels it was last year, I will say that it has gotten better. And for those of you who know me, that is a huge thing. I doubt I would/could ever get to the point where I said I was atheist. I know better. But it was not beyond the realm of possibility that I would have gotten to the point that I said, "I hate God." We all feel that way from time to time, I am sure. But the darkness I felt was threatening to drag me down to a point of no return in that regard.
Adam and his wife Heather through their wonderful blog, helped me realize that the problems I faced, the anger that pervaded my life, was not of God's making. Those were byproducts of man's world, and byproducts of my own making. Am I ready to say that I am perfectly grooving on God right now? No. I am just being honest. But, I think God gets that I have my own stuff to work through. And here is something great that Adam and Heather have helped show me via their blog: God has infinite patience for us (he has to, otherwise, there would be a different dominant specie on this planet), and that God truly loves us, and he gets it. He gets that people have their stuff they have to work through on a day to day basis.
Here's the funny thing, Adam and Heather probably don't even know that they helped me as much as they have. So consider this your thank you, folks! Maybe one day I'll take you up on your offer to see what your church is like. But you'll have to be patient. Churches and I have never really gotten along very well. ;)