I wrote this in 2007 or 2008. I am sorry but I don't remember when. I just found it again so posted it.
I am reading Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller again. It might just be my favorite book. It gives me so many ideas to think about and really allows my brain to engage in deeper thinking which is something I don't always get to do a lot of it seems like. I read the book and try and think of deep thoughts when I read it but sometimes of course my brain wanders to other things I need to be doing or other things that need to be done or just other things I want to do. Such is my brain I often think. But this morning as I read it I was thinking about the book and what Don had written. About being a Christian and what that meant. And I was thinking about how I had decided quite a while ago that to me being a Christian meant I believed in Christ and that He was the Son of God and that I wanted to live his life of love and goodness. And then it struck me.
I keep thinking back to the youth group that I got to work with a few weeks ago and how one of the girls said she didn't believe in God yet. I told her that she should believe when she felt in her heart she truly believed and not before because if she was only believing because someone told her to believe then she didn't really believe. I hope you can follow that. It makes perfect sense to me but often what I write doesn't make sense to others when it is down on paper. But it was a sad moment for me when she said that because she was being honest and she didn't know God like others knew and therefore she was skeptical. Well this morning I figured out how to meet God and to see him! I would like to try this on her sometime if I can get the right situation. I will have to see what I can do about that. Here is what I would like to do to introduce God to her and you and me and anyone else who wants to meet Him and see Him with their own eyes.
Hi! My name is Erik, yours is? I heard you want to meet God. Well, I am here to introduce Him to you. Yes, He is very real and I am glad you asked that because I am probably one of the first people you have heard for a while tell you that I can introduce you to Him that may not have a bible in their hand or be on a pulpit. It isn't that I am not going to give you a scripture but I am just Not going to stand on high looking down on you and preach the word dressed in a robe while shaking my finger at my audience. Not that every minister out there does that but it often seems to be the stereotypical image we see in our heads. Have you ever noticed that?
Anyways, I thought that as we walked I would first give you the only verse that I am going to quote at all. That is the phrase "God is love". It is from 1 John 4:8 but I don't want you to have to worry about remembering the verse number right now. You are here to meet God and not to memorize scripture. Not that scripture isn't good to look at but you didn't come here for that reason this time and if I start to give you verses I would feel like either a really pushy salesman or a hypocrite and a Christian should be neither. The main thing that I want you to remember is that God is love and goodness and all those things and Satan is hate and all the bad things.
Ok, here they are. This is my friend Eric. He and I have done some goofy stuff together I will tell you right now. He is married with 2 sons and they are good kids even if they are a little mischievous sometimes. They get it from their father. But Eric and I met at summer camp many years ago and he taught me how to play guitar. He gave me lessons for free and even went with me to help me pick my guitar out. We talked about the good and bad qualities of various brands and styles and then he told me what I would and wouldn't need so I didn't have to spend extra money. He gave me the lessons and the help for free because he said that if I wanted to play guitar that automatically makes me cool and he had to help me because the world could always use more guitar players.
This is my Sara. Sara is actually Eric's older sister. She is simply put one of the most beautiful people I have ever met. I mean, she is very nice looking as you can see for yourself but more than that is the fact that Sara has a huge heart and she is very kind. She is gentle and delicate but at the same time she can be so strong when she needs to be. She is very special to me because she really seems to care about what I have to say even if she has no idea what I am talking about and if you are around me enough you will find out that if I get excited I have a tendency to ramble on about things.
This is Chris. Chris is an actor. He is one of the funniest guys I know and it is great when we put on skits because he has great improv ideas. It is fun because he can have the entire audience laughing in about 10 seconds. But that isn't what I remember most about Chris. A few years back I couldn't stop hyperventilating and Chris came to see how I was and then stayed with me the whole night. Once the doctors got my breathing controlled we had to stay at the hospital because they wanted to make sure it wouldn't start again. Well Chris had some great stories to pass the time and then the biggest thing I remember is that when I got hungry he left for a bit and came back with a plastic bag full of dinner rolls. He never did tell me where he got them but said that he was hungry too and we ate them into the night. Later, I received a package in the mail from him. In it was a note asking how I was doing and a big bag of more rolls telling me to have a batch on him.
Wait, check this out. I love this moment. There aren't many things that can match a sunset across a lake are there? I love the way the rays flicker across the waves and send their colours into the sky. The water is still warm too and a bunch of us have sat with our feet in the lake just chatting about life while we enjoyed the sunset.
This is Steve. Steve is one of my great friends. We have gone through a lot together including a time when we didn't really have a friendship. We aren't really close like we used to be where we would stay over at each other's house but that is ok because we know we are there for each other in a different way now. We both have gone through our tough times in life; Steve had to worry about drugs while I had to deal with alcohol. But the important thing to me is that when I got out Steve was right there asking me how I was doing and watching out for me. That is a true friend.
And this is Josh. Josh is my closest friend. We get along almost all the time and even though we are different in many ways it still works. Josh and I have spent many nights partying a bit too hard and quite a few days fishing with a six-pack. He is the one I go to Twins games with and we always make sure we tailgate. We sat up one night and cleaned out his carb for his car and drank Colt .45 and ate soda crackers while we did it at 11 at night. We also spilled carb cleaner on my screwdrivers and the handles have never looked the same as well. The best part about Josh is that his home is always open to me. He may be really busy but he will Make time for me even if he doesn't have it and the couch is always there to sleep on if it gets late.
I hope you enjoyed meeting some of my friends. They are great people I think. Of course, I think they are because they are all my friends. But what? You say that I forgot to introduce you to God and that was why you came with me in the first place? Well I promised you I would introduce you to God and I will. You just met Him. God is love. God is the good inside each of us because goodness can't be without love. Friendship, love, caring, kindness, beauty. It is all God because God is everywhere and everything that is good. You don't have to look very far to see God if you just know where to look. He is inside you at this very moment and every time you love or laugh or simply enjoy something special then you are connected to Him and all that He wants for you.