I realized without a doubt that I can no longer color within the lines, or live in the box that the world of the past has restricted us to. I am shouting from the roof tops "I am no longer willing to accept the theories, theologies, or stories of the past, no matter how revered or respected they may be. I must STEP OUT and enter the NEW UNKNOWN! I must no longer follow the seen, well-trodden path, but enter the NEW UNSEEN that is more REAL than the seen. "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few" (Matthew 7:13-14).
I had been trying to go back to traditional religion and to join a church. I was taking a traditional class at a church learning to pray for healing. Something was just not right. I was trying to fit into the church's accepted ,wide, easy gate and I had that nagging feeling within that something was just not right.
I grew up in a very religious Lutheran family. After both my children were confirmed in the Lutheran church, I started looking for a new church. I knew that I did not feel the presence of God within the church and felt there were too many distortions. When I reached the pinnacle of what I considered worldly success, I suffered a crisis of meaning and the floor fell out from under me. I fell into an abyss of pain and suffering. I was led to read the bible for the first time and as I started reading the New Testament, the words opened up, revealing the life and spirit of the living God speaking directly to my heart. I was AMAZED and ASTOUNDED at what was being revealed!!!
After three days of this unfolding and revealing of the living word, I sat down again on the couch to read. I started to feel very hot. I first thought I was getting sick, but soon realized that the flames of living fire were flowing through me and I was compelled to get into the bath tub where I had the experience of the Holy Spirit entering as my very breath. My arms were literally raised by a power that was not my own to above my head, and I found myself praising God at the throne. A short while later, Jesus manifested himself to me at a Buddhist meditation class in my masters program, where my heart was flung open, and the chains that were binding me were released. Since that time I have had mystical, spiritual experiences of the intimate actual presence of the living God, and the indwelling Spirit within me. It has taken me a long time to integrate these experiences and I wanted to come back to the traditional church, and find a community to communally worship the Living God.
The thing I realized this morning was that I can not go backwards. I was feeling conflicted and uneasy, and the PEACE of God that I have come to know as I follow Jesus and seek to do the will of the Father was missing. I realized this morning that while there is much richness, beauty, and truth in the church, there is also way too much distortion, dogma and doctrines that were made from the ego of man that is NOT of God. I MUST follow the living presence of Christ Jesus that has been revealed to me. I MUST express the Spirit of God in the unique way that God wants to express through this body vehicle. God is wanting to do a NEW thing. This is the TIME! This is the PLACE! The past must be left behind. We can no longer sustain the old structures of the past that were separate from God and perpetuate the lie that we are separate from God.
This is the beginning of the new AGE of GOD living in the midst of humans. This is the "age to come" that Jesus spoke of. This is the time to let go of the past. We can no longer afford to look back as Lot's wife did and be turned to stone. We must BE HERE NOW! Here in the present moment, God is living, active, and VERY REAL. His presence is POWERFUL and able to perform MIRACLES and make the impossible POSSIBLE NOW!!! The Spirit of God is NEW every moment. It is fluid, flowing, powerful, life giving, healing, renewing, restoring, energizing, and regenerating. LET THERE BE LIGHT!
I don't see the next step yet, but I am STEPPING OUT and STEPPING UP!