Dragged kicking and screaming to Spirituality – I have been given a gift.

Some people are more hard headed than others. It appears that I am one of them.

I recently heard an interview with a Lutheran Minister named Nadia Bolz-Weber whose church is named The House for all Sinners and Saints. In this interview, she related that she believes we do not have to pursue God. Like it or not, God is pursuing us. Hmmm, this is an interesting concept. They do say God is everywhere. The more I thought about it, this has really been true in my life; and I am willing to bet I am not alone.

She also said she believed we are all sinners and saints at the same time. Again, hmmm, another interesting concept. This also seems to be true.

In fact, for a long time spirituality has been big in my face. I have tried my best to ignore the signs. I don’t know why, I kept burying this fact and it kept jumping back right in my life.

As I have mentioned before, for most of my life I have had an issue with the history of some organized religions. It seems, more people have been killed in the name of “My God is Better than your God, so I am going to kill you and your family”; This has always been very troubling for me. Look what’s going on in the Middle East.

Another, struggle for me, and I don’t believe am the only one; is when I hear the dogma, “We are the chosen people, follow our rules for God’s blessing. We have got it right and unfortunately, everyone else is wrong. Therefore they will be punished, or not have an afterlife”. I just don’t buy all the Jews, Hindu’s and Muslims are going to hell.

Growing up, I had a much less than perfect behavior and this carried forward into my early adulthood. No one ever accused me of being a Saint.

As you may have read, last year when Morgan and I took that 500 mile trek on the Camino, she went for the spiritual experience,; I went for the athletic challenge. About ¾ of the way through this trek, I had an unexpected major spiritual experience. It was then I discovered something is out there and in here.

This was not expected, and I was hesitant to talk about it. I even started questioning the reality of this experience. Because I blogged about the trip, several months later I was encouraged by a friend to share my experience in my blog. He said, “Spirit is calling you to share this experience. I paused and was tentative at first, but I thought OK, thinking it would be buried in the back of the paper. Then the day the paper arrived, the article and picture covered the entire front page of the local section. My first reaction was; Yikes! I’m not ready for this.

Afterwards some people suggested I become a minister. My immediate reply was not only no, but absolutely no. It’s not in the cards for me to try to live a holy life; and tell people how they should act. This is not me. I like to laugh, joke and take a strong drink on occasion. I am just a regular guy and it is not my place to be preaching about God.

Then a student from the FSU Film School contacted me about a class project. She wanted to do a documentary of me and my spiritual transition. Are you kidding? Why in the world would anyone want to do a documentary about me and faith? I am just a regular guy. I may go to Unity Eastside Church but I am not the guy to go around talking about God. This is a subject no one goes around talking about.

Well, I thought this is a class project for this young lady and she seemed so excited to move forward. So we agreed to let them follow us for a week to interview and film us. Several months transpired and we forgot about this filming. Then a couple of weeks ago she contacted us. The finished product was ready for viewing on the big screen. They were showing the spiritual transformation on the big screen. Yikes!

I am not sure where all of this is going to go but; Dear God, I think you now have my attention. Please, I don’t need any more major events. I hear you.

For anybody reading this, don’t be so hardheaded like me. I urge you to stop and listen, or go for a walk in the woods. Stop, look and listen how God is always trying to get into your life.

To read our previous blogs including the day by day account of walking the Camino, go to www.itsincredibleoutthere.com

Gregg Patterson

Gregg.patterson@yahoo.com

At the Iron Cross on the Camino. Where people put rememberance or prayer stones.

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