Why I am a Christian and why I write

“I write, moreover, because I have something to say.  That I have something to say is not a personal achievement. I have something to say because I am a Christian.”- Stanley Hauerwas

I have not stumbled upon my Christian faith as a superhero, or as a keen intellect or charismatic liberator. If you look at me, there is hardly anything special about me. I’m 6’4, with a very mediocre beard. I smoke cigars and like sarcastic and slapstick jokes. I was born in Canada. I secretly want to marry Drew Barrymore. I publicly want to marry Katy Perry. I’d even be okay sharing her with Russell Brand because he seems like the coolest guy in the world. None the less, nothing special.

And, the Bible makes statements like this: 1Peter 3:15 “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.”

And, theologian Jurgen Moltmann makes quotes like “Where hope for common life ends, the killing begins”

I know the killer of life that used to be in me. The person who has struggled through several addictions (not sure how I remained a virgin and clean of drugs throughout this time). The person who battled through such extreme anger in his teenage years, that every day’s purpose was to ruin others. The person who studied theology to destroy others with it. There was no hope in me, so the killing began, for most of my teenage years.

Yet, hope is all I have. I have no certainty for the next life. For all I know, this life is it, and, my time on earth is it, and, I could die go underground, and, find out this whole “God” thing was a myth. But, that doesn’t explain the hope within me. I have walked through sheer darkness and I see the light. I see light in the most common things. Hearing a shredding riff, brings me to such joy it causes me laughter. I enjoy conversing with the cashiers at gas stations so much, I have to hold back from telling them how much I appreciate them so I am not banned from the place, so I can come back and do it again. And, when my life is in darkness, the darkness doesn’t feel like darkness. It feels like unexplored, painful, progress.  The anxiety and depression that once haunted me, are no longer the enemies of my shadow self, but, the aching voices of wisdom and freedom. They can’t be the enemy, because, then the enemy is myself. I no longer have to fear myself, because, I know longer have to fear God, who is in me. There is a part of me who can no longer hide.

“The soul of the artist cannot remain hidden.”- Henri Nouwen

I write, precisely because of this hope. There is no more reason to kill, the hope for life creates. God, the creator, found goodness in what he created. Then told us to create out of that goodness. For those who experience that goodness, within themselves, cannot do anything but create. Even the darkest souls, who are often the greatest creators of art, find the goodness in their ability to create, so they do that very thing. Their creation, breathes hope for their own life, and, the world around them. This must be the reason for our hope.

I cannot make absolute statements. I cannot make God an absolute. Doing so, would be a great injustice to him, I believe. But, I know the life that has found its way in me, and, that’s the only answer I have. And, I must create out of that place.

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7 thoughts on “Why I am a Christian and why I write

  1. Tara M Seguin says:

    Thank you.

  2. wendiwrites says:

    Mike,

    This is delicious. You make me smile with your honesty, sense of humor and colorful language (not the bad kind). I can only guess that you make God smile, too. 🙂

  3. Jonathan Fulk says:

    great Nouwen quote! (of course almost all Nouwen quotes are…)

  4. Kathy says:

    Mike,

    What a powerful message.So many writers realize the impact of their words in print not just on their readers but on themselves as well.
    Great post.

  5. Susan says:

    Thank you for writing, Mike…The Lord God has given you the pen of a teacher, that you may know how to sustain the weary with a word. (para. Isa 50:4)

  6. Kassi Wilson says:

    You say in this post -“that you have no certainty for the next life, that this life could be it, the whole God thing could be a myth, and cannot make God an absolute, doing so would be a great injustice to him, etc.” How is this hope? It sounds like you talked yourself out of having faith in God. As a fellow Christian I would like to encourage you and share a few scriptures. “Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised. For, “Yet a little while, and the coming one will come and will not delay; but my righteous one shall live by faith, and if he shrinks back, my soul has no pleasure in him.” But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls” (Hebrews 10:35-39). “And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him” (Hebrews 11:6).

    • mfries05 says:

      Hey Kassi,
      Thanks for your reply and consideration. I do believe in heaven, and, in God. This is my hope. However, one cannot physically prove the existence of God. If one could, it would no longer be faith, but, certainty. I believe that God wants me to start heaven here and now, after all, that’s the point of the Lord’s prayer, as well, I believe in the after life. And, I believe in the after, after life, where God re-establishes his presence on this earth, the new heavens and the new earth. But, intellectually speaking, God could be a myth, but, spiritually and mysteriously thinking, God has changed me so much, I cannot but help and have this hope.

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