Why I Stopped Getting to Know God, Pt. I

It is inevitable that what we think of a person is often influenced by what other people have to think and say him/her.  For example, let’s say your best friend has an acquaintance named Sally whom she just loves.  “Sally is the best, you’ll adore her!  She’s so sweet and funny!”

But then you meet Sally, and she’s actually a real bitch. 

Well, you may be put off; but because your friend just swore Sally was so great, you’ll probably be inclined to give Sally another chance.  Maybe she was just having a bad day, or maybe I did something to offend her, you’ll think.  So now you’re making excuses for the behavior of someone whom you don’t even know, just because your BFF has a different perception of her than you do.

It doesn’t always go like that.  I’d probably just be like, “Screw Sally!  What kind of name is Sally anyway?”  Nevertheless, it is undeniable that the beliefs and assertions of other people – especially people close to us – have a huge impact on our own beliefs about the world around us (not to mention, they affect our beliefs about ourselves).

Our thoughts about God are no exception.  Since I was probably five or six years old, I have had hundreds of voices attempting to create and influence my views on God – everyone from my parents to church leaders to acquaintances whom I barely knew.  And many of those people succeeded at influencing how I believed and lived.

So much of what I knew about God came from what other people told me about Him.  But I came to a point in my life, about 3 years ago, when I had to ask myself, What do I know about God?  What experiences have I had with this being, and what are the implications they’ve had for my life and choices and future?

Three years ago, I felt forced to answer these questions when I had an experience that would catalyze an emotional and confusing journey wherein which I started to question everything I had previously believed.  I was in church when it happened, actually...