I’ve always been searching—not for a religious system to follow, but for the truths behind the ideas that have been presented to me as true. I grew up going to church, and I’ve always seen lots of true and good things in the words of Jesus. He is one of my favorite people. But I don’t think he was what they say he was.
I’ve carried 10-foot-tall crosses across town on Good Friday. I’ve baptized people. I’ve read the entire Bible (except for Numbers). I’ve laid my hands on people in prayer. I’ve studied Greek and searched the Bible for years to find the answers to my questions. I’ve studied the early history of the church and its first leaders.
All of these things I have done as an adult. I’ve found that there is a degree of truth in Christianity, but there’s also a lot that I’ve determined not to be true.
I’ve learned about other religions, too. I’ve seen some truth in most of them, and some falsehood in all of them. I won’t say that they all teach the same thing because they don’t.
I love Jesus in a way that most Christians don’t, and I seek to understand him in a way that most Christians never will. I see him as a brother and a teacher. I see him as frustrated with people, even his own disciples, because even they didn’t understand his message.
And I see his words twisted and changed—by people with their own ideas about him—to mean something that he didn’t intend.
I want to be like him in a way that most people don’t. What does it mean to be “like him”?
It means to walk a similar path to the one he walked, and to grow into the kind of person that he was—and more. Like he is supposed to have said, those who believe in him will do even greater works than he did (John 14:12). He was an example of what people can be when they seek love, God, and understanding, without seeking approval from other people who don’t understand anyway.
In other words, to me Jesus was an example of a spiritual person—a person who lives by the guidance of the Spirit within.
I’ve traveled the road of religion, and I prefer the road of the Spirit. When you trust the Spirit to guide you, you don’t need anyone else’s words or ideas to confirm what you know.
It’s a life of faith that brings you everything you need.