Tonight at church Bobby Moss talked about remembering our stories. That it is important to remember where we came from, and what has changed since the point we came to embrace Jesus. I feel like this is a really good exercise, especially given my current state of heart. When I came to know Jesus everything changed, and my life has really never been same. Unfortunately I’ve found myself become increasingly cynical and separated from Jesus over the past 6 years. Thats not to say it has been a big downward slope, there have been lots of ups and downs, but the trend isn’t one I’m happy with. I’ve let doubts and frustration chip away from the time I spend with God. It is important to remember that point when it all changed. That point when I met Jesus, before all these other things tainted my outlook. Sometimes its difficult to separate Jesus from the actions of people claiming to act in his name. So lets get back to where it all started.
I won’t go into a lot of details here, maybe another time, but I grew up with loving Christian parents and attending a Christian school. I learned lots of Bible stories but I never learned love in church. The school was even worse. The older I got, the more depressed and angry I got. LIfe was broken and I was miserable. Each summer I went to a summer camp called Hume Lake. Though I had been there several times before, the summer before I started high school would forever change my life. Something was stirred in me during one of the chapels. It was like I understood that I needed Jesus all the sudden, and that was all that truly mattered. I did the walk down the aisle and pray routine. I don’t remember what I said, but I know I prayed with a counselor named Rob Dietzel. After we left the camp, I quickly forgot about what had happened. Thankfully Jesus had another savior for me in Rob. He got a group of guys together a couple weeks later to start an informal small group. For the next several years Rob and the group were instrumental in helping me learn to live a life that follows Jesus in community. I went through the motions at the camp, but it was from godly examples like Rob that I got to know Jesus and how to follow him.
I think back to that time and things seemed much simpler. Faith was easier before theology came into the picture. Before I spent years touring the country and playing music in Churches while seldom finding any piece of Jesus there. Admittedly I’m sometimes crippled by doubts these days. Not really about Jesus, but parts of our belief system. I have lots of questions, and there is a lot that doesn’t make sense. BUT, no more letting that steal from me what does make sense. Jesus is absolutely real and I long for his redemption of all things. I can follow Jesus as did when I first knew him, because he is what matters. I may never have all the answers, and there may be times when doubts seems to be tipping the scales of faith, but Jesus is there calling me onward. Everything changed back then. Everything is still changing now. I’m sure of what I hope for, and certain of the one I cannot see.