Friday, October 16, 2015

Lost in the Almighty God.. a little about who I am

My journey with God began in 1999. I was at a very low point in my life; everything I valued and treasured had been taken away from me. My home, my children, my job, my freedom, all my earthly treasures, absolutely everything had been taken from me. I was debating if life was even worth living. As I was thinking about living or not living I suddenly realized that existence in any form, whether physically alive, or in the spirit, had meaning, no reason, no point, unless God was love, and that he truly loved us as I had been told, but had never seen. It did not matter whether I was physically alive, or my soul existed in eternity, neither one had any worth without God and his love. It was then that I bowed before Almighty God and told him that I was not sure that his love was real, but I had heard that he loved but I have never seen it so I was not sure it existed, but if it did I needed it, I needed God, I needed HIM. He would have to show me his love was real, because I had never seen it. I was willing to believe on a very basic level that God loved simply because his scriptures say so. However I would need him to show me his love. This was the beginning of my relationship with God, and the ending of my simply following a religion.
It was then that my life began to change. I began to experience Almighty God working and moving in my life. The more I listened to God and followed him the more he brought peace, joy, acceptance, love, etc., into my life. It created within me a desire to know Him more and to know His love more. To know what HIS truth is. I had grown up with religion, and it had never satisfied. I had been to many different churches, new many different beliefs, many of which contradicted each other, and I didn't know which ones, if any, were real truths. The love and acceptance I found in every church was conditional, If I was enough like THEM I was accepted.. if I did not “fit in” I was rejected.
I began to go directly to God and ask him what his truth was. I knew with all the different beliefs out there, there was no way I alone could pick which ones were true and which ones were false. Only by going to God and asking him could I ever know what was true according to him. I no longer cared what the truth was; I didn't care if it was the same as what I had grown up believing or if it was something different. All I cared about was to know what God's truth really was.
After about five years of seeking God's truth, God and asked me if I was willing to give up everything I knew in order to have his truth. This was no easy thing for me to do, I had always been fairly smart and I knew quite a bit by human standards. I wrestled over this for a couple weeks before finally deciding that I wanted God's truth more than I wanted what I knew. I finally told that it yes I would give up what I knew so I could have his truth. I began to take everything before God, everything I have been told and believed all my life went before God with only one question “is this Your truth or not”. I would not try to figure it out on my own, I would simply wait until God told me or showed me what his truth was and is. Now everything I know, I learned from God. If God did not tell me or show me then I do not know. But one thing is sure. When God says it is truth it is truth. God does not lie, God is not mistaken, man and religion can be wrong, but Almighty God, Creator of heaven and earth, it is always true and right. Even today, everything I hear or read is taken before God with the same question “is this YOUR truth”. I believe nothing unless God proves it. Around the same time, maybe a couple months later, it was the spring of 2008, I was listening to a teaching a pastor was giving. He told the story of a man in a Chinese prison for 20 years, who went through all sorts of torture and abuse. When he was finally released from his prison after 20 years, he was asked how he endured all that he went through. He said it was a twenty-year honeymoon with God. To this day I cannot tell you what the lesson was about, or what this story was supposed to illustrate. I was absolutely caught up in the “twenty-year honeymoon with God”. I heard this story about 10 o'clock in the morning, and it is all I could think about all day. When my husband came home from work I told him about it and for the rest of the evening it was still all I could think about. I had been through a fair amount of abuse throughout my life, I could not imagine going through torture and calling it a honeymoon with God. I knew that God loved me, but I also knew I did not know his love on this deep of a level and I wanted it more than anything. We went to bed that night around 11 or midnight and my husband began to fall asleep. I cannot stop thinking about twenty-year honeymoon.
I finally just went to God and told him how much I wanted to know and experience his love on that deep of a level. I had been through a lot of abuse in my life, and had never wanted to go through anything like it ever again. However I told God I would go through it all again, and even more than what I had been through, if I could just know he loved me the same way that man did that could get them through 20 years of torture. I didn't even get the words out of my mouth when I began to experience something I never experienced before, or have since. From the deepest most inner part of me, the very core of my being, I began to be filled with a love so perfect, so pure, which is beyond my ability to describe. A love that started at the center of my being, filled me up, and then flowed out to every living being, even to creation itself. Sheer bliss, perfect contentment, perfect peace, perfect joy, no pain, when I thought of those in my life who would hurt me the worst, there was nothing but his pure love for them, and a slight sadness not for me or for what I had been through, but for them that they were missing out on something so wonderful. A love so great that if I took all the good experiences I've ever had in my entire life and rolled them into one experience it would still pale and seem like nothing compared to the love I was experiencing. There was no more “me”, just pure perfect love flowing through me. It wasn't my love, I could never love that much. I had never heard of this kind of experience before. I knew it was God, for only God could love so perfectly and purely. It wasn't until 2011, that I finally found a name for the experience I had. The "annihilation of the self" (fana fi 'Allah') losing oneself in the love of God. The tiny taste or glimpse of what it will be like for all eternity for those who love God, those who seek to know HIM. It has changed my life. There is nothing I will not do; there is nothing I will not go through for Almighty God. I will never let go of God, I will never stop following God and choosing him. I yearn and long to experience this love again. I asked God constantly for more of this love. I don't know if I will ever experience it again on this earth, and if I do not it's okay, for I know I will experience it for all eternity. I no longer fear death, for me that's it's like going home after a hard days work. I look forward to it when my work is done here on earth. And the things of this world do not mean very much to me, if I have to choose between the things of this world or the love of God I will pick the love of God every time. Not that it is always easy, sometimes it's a very difficult struggle, but in the end God gets his way.

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