The life I had built for myself was made up of the “American dream”, building a business that was growing, going to church and following what I was taught, and just daily living like anyone else.
My mother passed away in October of 2008, and by the end of the year, my wife and I also filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy. My business of nine years was over. From our perspective, the world was crashing in around us and everything we identified ourselves with was being stripped away.
Shortly thereafter we found a place to rent because the bank wanted our home we built just eight years earlier. Over the next year my wife and I grew apart after 20 years of marriage. We were struggling to survive with three kids at home. But life presses onward regardless.
What my wife and I did not know is that we were never truly in love, (I doubt today that many couples really are), but the products of society and religious beliefs that said you get married, have kids and grow old. As long as you say you love God and go to church, everything will be alright.
I was following in my fathers footsteps as a “righteous” man, leading my family on the path I believed they should be on, making sure unknowingly that I comply with my fathers requirements as I understood them. Why would I seek God when my father took on that roll? Any attempt to seek God myself seemed to be scrutinized by my father, and even my siblings who I guess had the inside scoop on who God “really” was. I must of missed the meeting.
The truth which I would find out later, was that I was a very judgmental person. I was critical about absolutely everything and very proud of it because I was a man of decision and discipline. Doing things “right” was all there was. (Righteousness was to me a single truth, like 1+1=2). However, my wife’s desire to find refuge, distancing herself from me, was not because she wanted to, but because she had to, to save her life from such a dogmatic man.
She met a fellow by the name of Roger Perkins, founder of Higher Ground Foundation, an outreach ministry, who would gently help my wife find the sanctuary she longed for. But I was not happy about that. I knew the “right way” and she did not need anyone else to help her find true peace – (was what I thought).
Several months passed before I made my way to Higher Ground myself. I went only because my wife did. I figured I would just satisfy these people with my presence. Surely they needed to know my side and perspective, and they needed to be converted to the “truth” that only I held.
A documentary that portrays closely to what is happening in my own life. Those closest to me will think I have only given up on my faith and followed a wrong path. I know this because it is how I was taught, to fear anything outside the box we existed. The truth is, God showed me a new path within myself before I found that there were others that held on to similar ideas. It was as if, the external was giving proof to each change that was taking place in my heart, after God first spoke to me in the silence of meditation and other ways I have learned “to be still and know that I am God”.
As the months passed, and though I resisted, things were strangely making sense, many things from my childhood and as adults were coming to the surface, things I was told to resist or forgive. Then one day Roger suggested that I should move out for a time, just a few weeks to give my wife and I some space. With crushing pain of failure and loss I agreed.
I first went to a run down hotel to save a few dollars, but then found a house I could rent. Weeks then turned into months. The journey of my life really began at this time. When you hit rock bottom, and there is not a thing left, this is the place where you either give up and step out of life, tolerate what you always did before that didn’t work (the facade), or you seek for what you have always wanted – true peace and love.
I was stubborn even within my pain, but I was not going to give up on myself, my kids or my wife. However, what I found through reading books, and going to a group that allowed me to share my life without fear of advice or judgement, (rules of the group) changed my life in ways that was completely unexpected and different than anything I have ever known before within church or home.
The stories in this website, are my journey over the months that followed my wife’s and my separation. (Not to be confused with the blog as that is my daily thoughts). Nothing in life (not my upbringing, religion or beliefs) prepared me for this, nor was I prepared for what I found – but it was worth every step of a very rough road. I know today that few will stay the course – I hope you do.
I am guessing you are here because you are searching to find answers. Perhaps years and years of pain and burdens you carry, and you are at your breaking point. I now understand the pain that exists for many people, and want to help by offering the same space and care I was offered to find amazing love.
Someone stepped into my life and allowed me to vent my anger and pain and let things go with never a hint of judgement or shaming me, and when I wanted advice would only point to his heart as to say, seek God for the answer. In a world with more than enough advice, this was a new twist I hadn’t thought of, even after 47 years as a practising “Christian”.
My stories are filled with things I was doing that hurt others, things I let go of, people I apologized to, a renewed awareness of who I am, and how to deal with life today as it comes at me. There are things in my stories I hold back to protect those I love.
My stories will reveal something of a man being pushed by his religion to a place Love never intended. I know I still hold some anger to the depths and history of my religion has surcome to in the name of “God”, as it gave into power and control over Love.
I know I will offend many who hold tight to their religion. I don’t mean to ask anyone to let them go. There are great things within every religion, and from my view today, shows the diversification of an infinite God with infinite Love for all people. I am however still seeking to find my place as I feel very removed and alien from this world and it’s views.
I am going to ask that you give an open mind as I did to learning and an ear to hearing what really lies behind the books, the words, the sermons, everything man has attempted to do to define… God.