I have great esteem for people who have made it through the valleys and are able to speak honestly about it. You can find many books about the lives of loss and redemption. There are the moments when someone confides to a friend or stranger about their journey. Many of these people are Christian.
Just because someone believes in Christ, doesn’t mean they automatically know how to follow him. Just because they have given their lives to God, doesn’t mean bad things wont happen.
Faith is not a magic charm against the evil in the world or in ourselves. Faith does not transform us into angels or heroes or a heavenly Jedi knight. We can still be in God’s embrace, but also fighting the wars with others or within ourselves.
And that is the beauty.
God is with us always, no matter if we acknowledge God or not. God’s hand is always outstretched to us, even if all we can give is a glance or the light touch of a finger.
As long as I can remember, I have always followed God. When I was young I couldn’t explain what it meant to be a Christian, but I knew how it felt. In those moments in the depths, those times when emotions and thoughts and life took over my actions and thoughts, every time I was trapped, hiding, or running away, I felt God’s outstretched hand.
In those moments I didn’t need to know the correct theological definitions or Biblical doctrines. I only needed to know that God was there.
Faith, belief, is the first step, and that is what makes us Christian. But being Christian is not a check-off list, but a life, a way of being, a man-made title of an ever-present and ultimately eternal and unlimited relationship with the “I Am.”
Being Christian is grabbing onto the Hand of God, already offered to us through the Word written, incarnate, and still living. Being Christian is knowing that the Hand is there, even when we don’t know we have the strength to grab on or when we want to hide from it. Being Christian is feeling the Presence, even when we can’t know.
And it is from there that we can begin our journeys, and it is there that we can rest and find peace.