Friday, May 25, 2012

My Peace I Leave Thee....

I don't know if it's because I'm now Catholic or what, but when I discuss theology--which is every single day, practically all day, I am just not at all upset with people who disagree with me. It used to make me panic when I was a Protestant because there was just something threatening if others read scripture in another way. And, even more, I was afraid if they didn't rightly believe (which was subconscious code for my way) they were lost.

The all-out GET PEOPLE SAVED through the gospel goal for me was about teaching them to invite Jesus into their hearts and then "whew" another soul saved from the clutches of Satan. But as I look back it was kinda formulaic. Person + Faith = Salvation. So I had to make sure everyone I loved, liked and met was plugged into that so that they didn't go to.... I couldn't even deal with a literal hell.

Now it is so different. I am okay when someone is an atheist. I will tell them how Catholics think and believe, but if they reject it, I just don't worry about them. Calvinists? Okay... so they disagree with my interpretation of scripture. God bless them and see them in heaven. Adventists? Mormons? Buddhists? Moslems? You know... I can love them and when given the opportunity will serve them and explain my faith... but I am not panicked.

Jesus is in control. I have a much more peaceful understanding of God's sovereignty now than I ever did. God has so many ways of saving us through His Son. Ways that are a mystery to us.

Now don't get me started on Catholicism. I am so madly in love with my mother church, getting to be a part of the.... the... the BRIDE of Jesus. I am crazy ecstatic and desire to tell everyone and convince everyone to see the Jesus His Holy Church has shown me. But it is not out of fear for their souls.

Let's face it. Catholicism isn't easy. Jesus' burden may be light but a bunch of Protestants I know want to constantly bombard me with burdens I was not meant to carry and let go with my first communion. As a Catholic, I am dying daily, I pick up my cross and follow Christ each morning. I sacrifice and serve. It is hard. But I am happier than I have ever been in my life. There is such glorious joy after the suffering of love. And Catholicism is teaching me all about the quiet, patient suffering of love.

I have never experienced miracles until I became Catholic. My understanding of scripture and philosophy and humans and history and science has skyrocketed. I swear my IQ has been raised.

But the Devil is the Father of Lies and dark forces are always trying to destroy the face of Christ in His Church. And I know its our, the Catholics fault, in many ways. Who would want to join a church with such a reputation? I didn't!

If this is God's church, and I am convinced it is, then I will be obedient to show her to anyone interested, but I have faith the Holy Spirit will convict those who should be Catholic to come in. Those who don't.... I know He is merciful... He is love... He will judge with both.

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