There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~Anaïs Nin

Monday, January 17, 2011

God's Version of God

        I have been curious about God my whole life. Ever since my well intentioned Born- Again Christian friend told me I was going to Hell, I have tried to understand Him and why He would punish a nine year old girl for all eternity.
       At that time, I couldn’t understand words like love and forgiveness as they related to God. The God I met was an angry God, a tyrant.  So I turned my back on Him the day I discovered that I could escape His wrath with a bottle of Budweiser.
       It wasn’t until I was married with children that I gave the idea of God another chance.  I was determined to get to know Him. So I read everything I could get my hands on. I read the Bible, I studied all the major religions…Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam.  I read books like The Secret, books about the Universe, positive and negative forces and energy. 
       And I got more and more confused.  How does someone get to know God?  Not an author’s version of God, or a friend’s version, or even a pastor’s version of God. How does one get to know God’s version of God?

     As I reflected on that question, it became clear to me that I haven’t given God a chance.  I have not been willing to hear from Him personally by sitting quietly and listening. I don’t “sit” well. I like to fill my time with distractions and my biggest distraction is alcohol. The thing I have used for most of my life to keep God at arm’s length.  It is my idol.
         Upon recognizing this I had a talk with Him that went like this…
        “Ok God, I’m not ready to surrender my life to you, but I am willing to surrender  all alcoholic beverages.  I will give you a year.”  

        That was pretty much the whole conversation.

        Its been two weeks and I haven’t heard a thing, but yesterday, I was in my car on the way home from dropping my son at college and as I drove in silence I realized that while I gave up my cocktail hour (which really only lasted 20 minutes} I filled in that time with other distractions. TV, music, trips to Starbucks.  I think I am missing the point.  
        So I’ve agreed to give my complete and undivided attention to God during what used to be my cocktail 20 minutes.  Perhaps now I will finally get to know Him….


  1. Oh Deb, I understand all too well. When I got clean from drugs I was an unbeliever. I had a brother that had become a born again christian after being an athiest so I knew all about God and being born again. I wanted nothing to do with that or God. While I was in treatment I met the chaplain to work through certain steps. He changed my life. I wrote a post a long time ago that tells what happened and tells some of what I believe now. This is the link to it...

    I think you are starting in a good place...removing alcohol or your idol so to speak will help you too seek and look with a clear mind or distractions. So I am a believer..I did go to church for a time and actually was training to go into youth ministry...I worked with a youth in a volunteer basis and loved it...then the reality of "church" hit me and I haven't been back since then. Long story.

    Now, I have my quiet times with Him and in all actuality talking to Him through out my day is what helps me get through. I have learned more about God and know him better since I stopped going to church. Now my eye's are open to all the miracles around the lessons he brings to living each day on his grace and love. I've gotten to know God by not just being still and quiet but in reaching out to others and stepping out of my comfort zone. Once my blinders came off I can see so much more than I did before when I was part of religion or trying to fit inside a perfect box.
    For so long I thought I had to be like all other believers instead of being myself...or thinking for myself.

    I am sure there are those that would say I am not a christian because I don't go to church or that I drink or that I think it's okay for someone to be gay...I know this because I've been told this. I know what I believe in my heart...I know what my faith has gotten me through and where it still takes me. That is a feeling that you can't buy or get in a bottle or even at church. God's love and grace is the greatest thing I've ever known. It's the only reason I am alive today.

    I pray that as you seek and give this time to yourself to search that you will be gentle with yourself and that you don't try to be like anyone else...that you will be you...because that is the very best...I am here if you need glad to have you as my friend. XX

  2. Lori, thanks for the link to your previous post....very beautiful! Quite a journey for you...

  3. This reminds me so much of my husband's story. He was 18 when he began searching, and it took him a long time before he was humble enough to get down on his knees and pray (he'd previously been fond of saying, "Neil doesn't kneel for no one!"). When he didn't receive an answer, he was ready to call it good. Suspicions confirmed...there was no God.

    But a sudden thought pulled him up short. He said to himself, If God has waited 18 years for me to call out to him, then I can wait a few minutes for his answer. And in that moment his prayer was answered. He received a powerful answer that stripped his atheism from him, and his life has been forever changed since that day.

    It sounds like you're there. You've asked your question, and you're ready for the answer. There's something truly beautiful about that kind of humility.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog today. Your sweet comment brought a smile during a day that had me weary.

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  5. "Unless you assume a God, the question of life's purpose is meaningless". Bertrand Russell athiest

    Consider looking at: THE PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE by Rick Warren

    You may be able to view a bit of it free on Amazon books.

    Just a thought..:)

  6. Good luck to you on your search for the Lord. I believe if you are seeking God honestly, you'll find Him. :)

    I think even for people who have been raised Christian, it's a life long search.