I choose to believe there is more than this world, than this life.
Many would respond, isn't this world & life enough? Aren't you just being greedy? Childish even? Silly and naive enough to believe in myth and fairytale, finding comfort in stories- tales designed by men solely for the purpose of providing just that.
Well, maybe so, thanks to freewill, each of us is entitled to our own opinion- however -
everything within me declares there IS more.
After spending many years as an arrogant "thinking" atheist, I discovered that existence required far more faith and belief in mankind than I was ever going to be able to drum up.
I don't just believe but I KNOW, mankind is different from his fellow mammal - from the beasts of the field. We are filled with wonder, we -unlike any other - are made in the image of our creator. We exist in a universe created FOR US, it is not by a series of a million accidents that we are here, there is a designer - an architect.
My beliefs are based on more than just a warm fuzzy feeling, I was a person who needed proof - what I felt in my heart needed also to make sense in my mind.
Of all the world's systems of belief, Christianity happened to be the one I was most resistant to. I could possibly rationalize that this "Jesus" was an actual character of history - perhaps even a great teacher, but God on earth? Puh-lease. A laughable thought. And then there was his church, doesn't the corruption of that establishment PROVE there is no God? Well, it seemed that way to me.
Thus began my search, setting out with my own preconceived ideas - I found myself surprised at every turn.
First- the documented evidence that 2000 years ago a poor boy from Bethlehem, a rough neck nobody carpenter from Nazareth lived an unselfish life of good for his fellow man and then died an unwarranted death is indisputable --- As is the fact that he rose from the dead, conquered the grave, a feat achieved by no other.
Second - He claimed to be God. This makes him one of two things: a madman/liar or exactly who he said he was.
I ask you to examine the evidence for yourselves, its abundant.
The message of this one man is different from any other who has walked this earth. I believe His message, and if I am able to share it in this fallen & dark world - than I am blessed. There is meaning, there is purpose, there is hope.
In my experience it seems we humans have a hard time seeing beyond or looking behind our own lifetimes - we are people of NOW - all about immediate gratification and "living in the moment". I am a student of history, and the more I examine it , it seems all we do is repeat it.
I believe there is a reason that mankind has been telling the same "stories" for thousands of years, why the same archetypes and heroes exist, there is nothing new under the sun. From culture to culture across the eons - our stories don't change. We just get more and more full of ourselves, pride goeth before the fall (and increaseth steadily after, IMO). The more we "know", the more we advance - the more we are are able to delude ourselves that we no longer need God.
My Grandma Mahota was opposed to organized religion, but she was a bible believer and a follower of Christ. During my "search for truth" she often let me know I made things far to difficult and added a level of drama to my journey that was truly unnecessary. For her the following short essay summed up her thoughts on why a through examination of this one solitary life was warranted:
"He was born in an obscure village, the son of a peasant woman.
He grew up in another village, where he worked in a carpenter's shop until he was thirty. Then for three years he became a wandering preacher.He never wrote a book. He never held an office. He never had a family or owned a house. He didn't go to college. He never visited a big city. He never traveled two hundred miles from the place where he was born. He did none of those things one usually associates with greatness.
He had no credentials but himself.
He was only thirty-three when the tide of public opinion turned against him. His friends ran away. He was turned over to his enemies and went through a mockery of a trial. He was executed by the state. While he was dying, his executioners gambled for his clothing, the only property he had on earth. When he was dead he was laid in a borrowed grave through the pity of a friend.
Twenty centuries have come and gone, and today he is the central figure of the human race and the leader of mankind's progress. All the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all the parliaments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned, put together, have not affected the life of man on this earth as much as that One Solitary Life"