A different road

I read an article on NPR’s site yesterday about a United Methodist minister who abandoned her faith and decided that she was an atheist. This story struck a chord for me, as it has many of the elements of my own journey to faith. I recognized the description of disillusionment with a God who seemed to be a judgmental taskmaster — that was the image I held for many years. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that her childhood was spent in a conservative Baptist family, while mine was spent with Catholics. The big difference for me seems to be that, after a journey of many years, I was drawn to the Cross by love — the love of my wife, and the love of a little church in the Sierra foothills. Once I understood that the dogma of religion that I found so repugnant – the damnation, the rejection, the fear — was devised by fallible humans and not by the God of Love, I learned that faith in a loving God is not the same as religion. I pray that her journey will lead her back to the Lord by way of love, as mine did. I am confident that He will be waiting patiently, as He did for me.

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