One time when I was a kid, I accompanied my mother shopping at Walmart. She was looking through various racks of clothes which didn't set my heart ablaze with excitement. After waiting and waiting for what seemed like forever (and for a young boy it probably was) I decided I needed a plan to use my time. I quickly asked my mother if I could go look at the toys to which she agreed. I leapt down the aisles with a new found freedom from being released from the terrors of shopping.
rThe toy aisle had all my favorites and immediately lifted my spirits. I went from row to row exploring every last item, forgetting about the time. Somewhere in the midst of my exploration, I realized I had been gone for quite sometime and hurried back to where I had last seen my mother.
When I got there, I looked carefully for her but found no trace. I was flushed with worry, thinking I was lost in this big store and didn't know if I would find my mother. Naturally I did the smartest and most systematic thing possible, run furiously down the aisles. :) Tears began flowing down my face as my heart beat faster and faster.
Suddenly, I came around a rack and saw my mother calmly, gazing at clothes. She looked up and noticed my crying and worried look and immediately came to me. Her embrace calmed every fear and worry I had. In that moment I knew I was ok, that I was found. Of course my mother asked, What was going on? I quickly told her, "I thought I lost her." But my mother knew where I was and the time that passed was just a small amount. I still remember the joy I felt having found those loving arms again.
Our Faith Journey
I think this story can easily transfer over to our faith journey. Spiritually we may feel lost, scared and alone. We aren't for sure where to look next and what question to ask. We run furiously panicking to find what is right. Some of us may have even stopped looking and decided we are on our own. Wherever you are on your faith journey, I believe there is a long embrace waiting for you. A hug that will remove those fears and worries leaving you completely vulnerable and yet loved. The continued searching of your heart and mind will hopefully lead you to a faith community. Remember God knows exactly where you are and is waiting to embrace you. Take your time and slowly come to your destination.
Faith is meant to be lived out with other people. Through others we are able to find God and share the most vulnerable parts of ourselves. Faith communities focus us on relationships, deepening our faith in the process. Faith communities grow us spiritually and push us beyond our comfort zones so our gifts and talents can be fully utilized and shared. It is in community where we fully become aware of the wholeness of God in our lives. For those that do not have a faith community, I encourage you to courageously search for one that fits you; one in which love can grow where previous pain has been. Unsure where to go, check out the nearest Community of Christ by clicking here. If this is too big of step, please contact me and I would be happy to be a part of your faith community.
What Can You Do
Its important to ask yourself various questions about what you are searching for. Each has value and importance in leading you down the path that is right for you.
What experiences have led you to where you are at today?
What does your potential faith community look like and feel like?
What would your faith community be active in doing or living out?
What do you feel spiritually passionate about?
What specific part of your faith are you struggling with?
Who might be someone you could talk with about your searching?
Please hug someone this week! Give them a long embrace letting them know you love them! Also go to our activities page to see when our next small group is as we would love to have you join us!
Craig Hidy like the majority of ministers in Community of Christ is a bi-vocational, self sustaining ordained minister. He is a member of the Midlands Mission Center Emporia Team and an ordained Seventy. He and his family, live in Topeka, Kansas.
What is a Seventy?
The Seventy carry out missionary work for the church in close association with other missionary leaders. They represent Christ primarily as ministers of evangelism through witnessing, inviting, and church planting. They especially proclaim and promote Jesus Christ’s invitation to faithful discipleship through vibrant witness, and train individuals and congregations in witness and invitation. They particularly minister with seekers, individually and in groups, to share the gospel in relevant ways and to invite response. They support sacramental ministries by preparing people for baptism and/or confirmation, presiding at sacramental services, and performing most sacraments. They promote community by inviting individuals, households, and families to respond to Christ’s call to discipleship. They promote justice and peacemaking by inviting people to experience all aspects of Christ’s peace through active discipleship. They create ministry partnerships with mission center officers, apostles, elders, and evangelists.
The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of Community of Christ or Midlands Mission Center. We believe individuals should be allowed to have their own opinions and be at different places in their faith journey.