Lately I have been confronted with ideas that are so beautiful I wish with all my heart they could be true. I have found myself trying to support these ideas with everything (which is little) I know about the Christian faith and it just doesn’t work…but it is so beautiful.
I want the beauty to be a reality.
But it is not.
At least from my limited knowledge and beliefs, which may be different from someone else’s. This cannot be true. The beauty is a lie.
I have been reading the book Eat Pray Love this week. I think it is a great book. I love to learn while I read (which I think one is impossible without the other) and I feel that I have learned something about the world while reading this. Living vicariously through the author as she travels to different places in the world seeking to know herself better. I felt connected to the character. She started off her trip broken, and was putting back the pieces to her life throughout her travels.
I feel broken right now.
I get it.
On the second leg of her trip the author stays at and Ashram in India studying under her Guru. This is so foreign to me. It surprised me how little I know about other faiths other than the fact that I believe they are not true.
She spends her days meditating, working, chanting, and meditating. She finds what she is looking for. She has sought to find peace in a God and leaves having found it. She is pretty blunt in saying she does not have a name or label for her God, she just knows that he is God. I don’t know if you would call this agnostic or if it is even really necessary for me to put a label on it. It is just different from my views of God.
God the Father, this is what I know.
This is what is real for me.
Church, and the Bible. Jesus and the disciples.
Yoga, meditation, gurus. These words are foreign to me, so I quickly blew them off. But after reading further and thinking deeper, I thought maybe she or they are on to something. Wasn’t it just recently that I quoted “Be still and know that I am God”. At the Ashram being still consumed them. People would spend hours meditating in silence, being still, being silent, and knowing.
Yoga was actually developed so that people could spend more hours in pure still meditation with God without worrying about aches and pains related to a solitary non-moving position.
At first I thought there was no way this women found God. For all her seeking, she was looking in the wrong place.
My God, the only God I believe is true, would not be hanging around an Ashram.
But what if He was?
That is my thought that was so beautiful. What if there was only one true God that all religions worship in a different way, but it was still the same God.
It is beautiful.
But it is radical. At least from the Christian perspective. I know I am not the first person to have this thought, many people feel this way. I just don’t think they are Christ followers. We have a pretty narrow view of God.
It doesn’t mean that I cannot acknowledge that it sounds amazing. Even if I don’t believe in the idea.
But I still have room to learn.
My views are not narrow enough to see the devotion of others and see how flawed mine are. I abuse the grace of the God I believe in. I ignore him on a regular basis. And the amount of time I spend in pure silence seeking my Father is less than 5 minutes a month.
My faith is flawed.
Not the premise of my faith and the foundation on which it is built. That is perfect. But I, as the follower, am pathetic.
I will learn.
I will grow.
And then I will learn some more. From everyone. Because everyone, of every faith, has something to teach.