“There are two mistakes that can happen along the road to truth–not going all the way and not starting”
I recently met a young man who is actively seeking a career in motivational speaking. As he and I were talking, it quickly became clear we agreed on a good number of points ranging from public speaking, to personal development, to our approach to life, and so on. In that brief exchange, the only thing we seemed to disagree upon was our approach to knowing who God was. The young man stated he didn’t want to invest time in figuring out the unknowable. That’s fine, I thought; that’s just where he’s at.
Following that conversation, I questioned myself. After all, doesn’t it often feel like an exercise in futility when we try to understand God and the nature of Divinity? What’s more is, who is to say we’re even right when we think we’ve hit upon a truth!? How do we know? Can we?
Well, it was here I arrived at my deep inner desire to know God and to know my own nature–and the nature of all things, as a result. For me, it all begins with knowing God. Know God and all else will be revealed. Through knowing God, we will know how the stars and planets and universe work. Through knowing God, we will know the why’s and how’s of the world around us. We will understand the seasons, evolution and the life and death of it all. We will understand why our parents, teachers, priests, leaders, family and friends were who they were. We will understand who we are. We will know why we are.
Albert Einstein says, “I want to know how God thinks. The rest is just details.” For me, quite often, it’s the details I get caught in. It’s the details I allow to weigh me down. It’s the details to which I attach myself. It’s the day-to-day grind, the high’s and low’s, the drama and fantasy of life; that’s the stuff I find myself focusing much of my attention and energy upon. That is the roller-coaster I step off when I slow down, take time for myself and look quietly inward. And it’s in those moments where I feel closest to God. In the silence and calmness. In the “just being”.
Second to this, for me, is the sharing of insights of a spiritual nature. When I have a deep, powerful, connected conversation that raises both the other person and myself, I feel ecstatic! Thrilled! I’m back on the roller-coaster, sure, but it’s a great place to be in that moment! It feels inspired, God-centered and whole. In Matthew 18:20, Christ says, “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am.” Have you ever felt this phenomenon? I do it all the time now and–as I speak more about Divinity–more people come up to me to share their own experiences. On top of that, the more of these conversations I have, the more I see Divinity’s presence in the world around me. And, the more aware I am of Divinity around me, the more centered in Divinity I feel.
Epilogue: After my counseling session with Dr. Christopher today, I was walking out of the community church where these meetings are held. The building is set up in such a way one can access the conference area downstairs or the classrooms upstairs without ever seeing the chapel. In fact, I had never seen the chapel before this afternoon, having apparently walked past it several dozen times. On my way out today, however, I looked up and noticed the printing over a doorway that leads down a darkened hall. What I noticed for the first time were the symbols for the Greek characters, alpha and omega; the statement that God is the Alpha and the Omega–the Beginning and the End. I saw blue light coming from a room down the hall, so I followed it and discovered the large, empty chapel. The blue light was from the stained glass that lined the walls. The chapel was modest, even down to simple wooden chairs for the clergy, saving the ornate for the massive set of organ pipes that filled the front wall. I stopped for a moment to soak in the stillness, then walked to the front and sat down in the third pew from the front. There I sat in silence for a bit. I considered the contents of the altar, where stood a simple metal cross and a Bible, displayed open, upright and facing the congregation. I stood, genuflected, and approached the altar. This was the first line I read:
Psalms 27:8 – When Thou saidst, “Seek ye My face,” my heart said unto Thee, “Thy face, LORD, will I seek.”
And so I will.
I think it’s often bittersweet to go back and read something you wrote almost a decade ago. It’s a mixed experience, like digging through a time capsule in your parents’ attic and stumbling across your childhood artwork. It’s a forgotten snapshot that usually mirrors to you your own clumsiness from another age. I’m never half as clever as I thought I was when I made the masterpiece in the first place.
So, I offer this dusty treat, originally published to a personal blog in April 21, 2010. I was still in the throes of New Age studies, as illustrated by my numerous references to God as “Divinity” (God is divine, of course, but I tend to call Him “Father” these days, which recognizes the shift in my relationship with Him.) I also recognize how ill-grounded I was at this time. I had no sense of truth, nor knew how to find it even though I had God’s Word sitting on an altar right in front of me. I hadn’t yet discovered the authority of the Bible, nor I had I come under the lordship of Jesus Christ. I was simply a seeker, drifting from one explanation to the next.
Thank you, Father, for your call on my life.
Thank you, Jesus, for making the way clear.
Thank you, Holy Spirit, for buoying me through this journey.