The TMI Files. Touching God.
I've been thinking about posting on this for quite a while now. Like months.
Today I was following links through a few blogrolls, and came upon this post from Miguel.
I've never met him, never seen his blog before, but it is a beautiful post and it gives us plenty to think about when we think of our Faith.
Miguel misses his Faith, and I believe a lot of people do today, particularly in a supposedly Post-Christian world.
There are so many hurdles we face as followers of Christ. So many insults and offences that we let slide off our backs like so much water.
And when we do that, it is like capitulating to the class bully, and the taunts grow harsher.
Here in Victoria, we have the Racial and Religious Tolerance Act of 2001, which does nothing to foster tolerance. I can't recommend highly enough that people read this draconian piece of legislation. It has been used in particular as a club with which to beat Christians.
The Two Danny's" case is the highest profile case to spring to mind, but there have been other cases - such as the one where a convicted felon takes the Salvation Army's Alpha course and decides that it discriminates against him as a witch and a wiccan.
There are more cases out there, but those would be the two most well-known.
With cases like these, where it seems that Christianity itself is on trial, it is no wonder that people find their Faith sometimes falters.
How can such a loving God allow society to crumble to the extent it has?
In my mind, it is because He has given us Free Will. We have the choice to follow Him or not.
If we follow the example sent down as the Son, then God will look after us.
If we go against Him like recalcitrant children, then we will be treated as children.
So men have turned their faces from God, and instead towards a Godless existence, where what is important is instant gratification with negligible accountability.
This has lead to situations such as those Miguel spoke of, where even priests do not seem to follow God and His example any more.
I'm not a very good follower - far from it. I try to stay on the path, but I've fallen off it plenty of times, and will no doubt do so again, but I'm getting better at it.
I've also found my Faith is getting stronger, and I have never had occasion to regret coming to God.
The picture I've attached to this post is the Sacred Heart of our Lord. I have had it for nearly 20 years, and it is around 80 years old. I've had it laminated as it was getting a bit too fragile for my moving house every couple of years, and the blutack also was a bit harsh on the paper.
It is always on the wall in a visible position. In the House in the Heart of Bogan Central, it is on the wall opposite the front entryway, so when I walk in the front door, it's one of the first things I see.
I like knowing Jesus is with me.
I lived for years without God; my parents were non-religious. Dad agnostic and Mum atheist, but they still had us kids baptised. I gave up trying to work that one out, and just see it as one of those things.
Then one day, I got the Call.
Actually, it was a
I was in a particularly dark space in my life, and one day, for some reason, I was drawn to this image of Jesus. I'd seen it in the front room of my then-partner's house every time I was there, and I saw nothing special about it. Okay, he's got a picture of Jesus in the front room, that's his thing, no big deal.
For whatever reason, one evening, I walked past the front room, and found myself walking back the way I came.
I walked into the room, turned on the light, and was drawn to the Heart.
All the cliches you can ever imagine are inadequate to describe the sensation I felt.
The proverbial "bolt of lightning" is one that springs to mind.
Exhiliration, exultation, ecstasy, rapture, all spring to mind also.
I guess the way I describe it to myself is that God wrapped His hand around my heart and everything suddenly turned the right side up.
This is difficult to talk about, as it's something I consider intensely personal, and times new roman can never convey how much it affected me.
Enough that I dropped to my knees in this room.
Enough that I cried for a long time afterwards - nearly an hour.
Enough that my life changed forever, and in ways I never anticipated.
I cannot comprehend how people can choose to live without God.
I think that's because I have been touched, and the more troubled the times we are living in - think the Middle East and Iran, the sexualisation of children by the media, the continuing onslaught on Western Civilisation from within and without - the stronger my Faith grows.
I have no idea why God chose to touch me, but I give thanks every day for Him.