My name is Paul. I’m here because I used to know who God is. I spent my life learning about him, reading about him. I preached sermons, I read the Bible. I thought outside the box and I helped others discover God for themselves. For several years I felt I had a connection with God that others seemed to envy. I lived for deep conversations. People often left those conversations with a different point of view, and I felt like a success, both as a person and as a Christian.
And then, the unimaginable happened. Despite by best efforts, God and I began slipping apart. I tried praying more. I tried reading the Bible more. As I grew increasingly desperate, I tried a few things off the beaten path… Creating art, corporate worship through painting, church in every form you can imagine… Nothing I did created that same sense of intimacy I had become so used to. For the first time, I felt abandoned by my Creator. I felt alone. And I was pissed. If God wasn’t interested in showing up when I called on him, I couldn’t be bothered to try. So I didn’t. For about five years.
I lived with the mindset that God knew where I was if he wanted me. Otherwise, I was just fine on my own. A few months ago, I finally began to reconcile my bitterness, though it wasn’t through any big epiphany or God-moment… I was just tired of being angry. I began to see how ludicrous it is to be angry at God… To believe that the Creator of the Universe owes me anything, even a response, is arrogant beyond words.
I’m not angry anymore… But I’m not happy either. I’ve been getting by for a very long time by simply ignoring God. It’s easy to do when you don’t believe he cares enough to get your attention. Despite my best attempts at keeping my eyes shut, I can’t deny that I am beginning to feel hollow. The part of me that knows that God is out there somewhere, misses him. I don’t know where he went, or why… But I’ve decided to dedicate myself to finding him again.
In short, I’m hunting for God in everything and anything I can think of. Clearly, simply reading my Bible and praying isn’t working… So, maybe he’ll speak to me through Lectio Divina? Hell, maybe he’ll speak to me through building something with my hands or through Yoga. The bottom line is what I’ve been doing (…nothing, mostly) isn’t working for me anymore. If I’m going to get to a place where I feel fulfilled, I’m going to have to DO something to get there.
And that’s where this blog comes in. My wife and I are both in similar places. The two of us are going to begin traipsing through the brush of our spiritual landscape with the goal of stumbling onto a wild and elusive God. Together we’ve been accumulating a list of activities and methods people have used through the centuries to get closer to him. We’re going to spend at least ten days on each item, and notate our experiences here. The hope is that by doing so on a public forum and with each other, we will be able to help keep ourselves accountable.
…May the hunt begin.