November 17, 2009

Light*


There's nothing else I can imagine doing right now. After three nights being unable to snag more than a few hours of solid rest, I've finally settled into this. The excitement was almost unbearable at first. I feared this might never become normal, that I would be a constant case of restless excitement jitters. Eight days later, it's normal. :)

Things have gone wrong, the journey hasn't been flawless, but this is life! This journey was never meant to be an escape from the day-to-day or a time-out from myself and the world but rather an intentional pursuit of all of these things that make up life, just in different places and around different people. My heart is consistent, but my eyes are seeing: the places, the people. It's been 8 days, but I'm being faithfully filled.

We attended a Hindu celebration of Light's triumph over Darkness. It was absolutely beautiful and for the first time in my life I saw something I've been wondering about and hoping to discover for many years now. When I think about my relationship with God, the thing that holds me to Him is the LIFE I've found in Him, the honest, deep, intimate connection I have with Him that reminds me every single day just how present He is and how committed He is to me. I've often looked at other religions and wondered what it is that holds them together.. what it is that keeps them so committed. I've believed there must be something real in them... at least a little bit of truth hidden somewhere within them. And I've always wanted to find someone from another religion as passionate about their faith as I am about mine. I saw something Saturday night that brought me so much joy. At this Hindu celebration I saw for the first time a people who were connecting intimately with something Divine. This isn't to say that their religion is right, but it's not difficult at all for me to believe now that there's something in this Hindu faith is holy and good. Do they have the whole Truth? No, I don't believe they do. But even now I can picture this one man's face, the way he swayed, the way he disconnected from what was happening around him in order to connect with something ethereal.. I recognized in him something very similar to what I experience when I allow Jesus to sweep me away. This recognition doesn't alter, challenge, or change my faith in Jesus one bit, but rather gives me hope that perhaps parts of the world aren't as far from Him as I once believed they were. Perhaps they're closer than we think, they're just calling it something else right now. That's a huge thing for me to realize. As a Christian, I don't need to look at these other religions and see evil. It's like Keturah said, how can something that believes in and produces so much good in people be altogether evil? Just because it's not THE truth doesn't make it altogether bad. Am I promoting the Hindu faith? No, I'm not.. I hope this can be read and understand as I've experienced it.. simply as a bit of hope that people of other faith's do have a part of something real.. and that one day when they taste of the fullness of Christ, they might be able to recognize the beauty of the culmination of the many elements of Truth in this one man.

3 comments:

Heather on November 17, 2009 at 1:11 PM said...

Mmm....I'm SO Excited and expectant for you!!! <3 xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox so much love and so many prayers <33

Iris Star Chamberlain on November 29, 2009 at 10:16 PM said...

Kendra, you are my sister on this journey of self-discovery. I just wrote a bunch and deleted it because I don't want to make this a political issue or a religious war. This is about you.

I just want to express how impressed I am that you're taking steps towards self-discovery and discovering the world. I'm so touched that you're searching for understanding and I'm SO PROUD that you're willing to go against a lot of what you've been taught in order to try to access a more open and compassionate worldview. Honestly, it brings tears to my eyes to see you struggling against those chains, and I can tell when you act defensively, that it's hard to do so.

Be brave and follow your heart. Don't be afraid.

All I really want to say is that as you progress, consider the possibility "the truth" you're searching for is more subjective than any one religious story, and that everyone comes to it in their own way. If you can understand that someone from a different religion (or no religion such as myself) can feel the love you feel, the doors to compassion and understanding open.

It's the belief that you and you alone have access to THE truth that leads to misunderstanding, dehumanizing pity, or hate, and the fear of feeling, thinking or doing the wrong thing under the rules of your own religion that leads to closed-mindedness and an inability to grow.

In any case, I believe in you!
All my love and good wishes for you.

Iris Star Chamberlain on November 29, 2009 at 10:17 PM said...

Speaking of which, you should come to Grassroots with me next year and see how a variety of people are able to unite in compassion, ecstatic joy and love of life. :)

 

*I Paint The World* Copyright © 2008 Black Brown Art Template by Ipiet's Blogger Template