Last week I gave two homework questions in my talk for people to process alone or with friends. If you want to check out that message click here. I thought I would answer those two questions in our blog.
How and when did you begin your faith journey?
I’m not sure that I could put an exact start date on my faith journey. However, I would say that my faith journey got richer as I entered my teenage years. I was involved in youth group, and did everything associated with that. (Sunday School, Wednesday Nights, Camps, Mission Trips, Lock-Ins, etc) I think many of us get linked into those youth environments partially out of social reasons. If anything I was an awkward teenager, and I don’t think I could say that attending “youth group” was an amazing enhancement to my social experience.
Like many of us awkward teenagers, college tended to be my saving grace. I got plugged into different campus ministries as soon as I got there. On top of that I don’t feel like the experience was mired in nearly as much pettiness that my youth group experience came with. As a result, I began to develop deeper friendships in those environments, as well as a deeper faith experience. For me, those on campus experiences really helped to transition me to a more adult faith. It was my defining moment for faith as an adult. (Not withstanding the fact that I was also a Religious Studies major as well)
How has your faith held up to the rigors and pressures of adult life?
I think like many of us, our faith takes some major blows in adult life. There was a point around 2002-2003 where I was almost done with church and Christianity. It had just lost a ton of relevance for me. However, I got into a small group with some folks and began to reconnect. That group quickly became glue for my life, and we are all still very close. (even if we don’t see each other as often)
This is not to say that my faith doesn’t take a hit here and there. Certainly my involvement in the political arena has caused me to question the relevance of faith from time to time. Perhaps it’s because most of us in the political realm have a bit of a god complex that we need to fix; or perhaps its because we are exposed to the nasty underbelly of democracy that it leaves us jaded to faith. However, coming back to those small group experiences with friends has continued to reenergize my faith, and I keep coming back. Faith is something you just have to keep working at.
Coming up this Saturday we will explore what held the early church together under the immense pressures of Roman life. What bubbled to the top as their glue?
See you Saturday at 6pm.
Over 70 years ago, several prominent developers built huge neighborhoods in East Raleigh with the goal of creating all white suburban utopias in the middle of the city. While many of these bad ideas came to fruition, luckily the realities of the world began to erode the original racist and classist goals of those developers. Today our neighborhoods are some of the most diverse in the city, and East Raleigh has essentially rebooted itself and mirrors who we are as a city.
Similarly, many of us are looking for a spiritual or faith “reboot.” We grew up in churches or homes where we were handed a faith that simply crumbles under the rigors and realities of adult life. While faith has lost relevance to many of us in adulthood, we still want to believesomething, but at the same time we aren’t willing to compromise our intelligence or life experience in order to believe.
This fall, I’m excited to be leading a group that wants to have a “reboot” without compromise on faith issues. Beginning Saturday, October 19th we will be gathering as a new community that is focused on creating a safe and caring environment for anyone to discuss faith. If you’re curious about what’s happening in East Raleigh hit me up, or better yet join us at 6pm on October 19th.
PS… we’d love to get a “I Love East Raleigh” yard sign in front of your house. If you’re willing to put one out for us let me know.