Taking baby steps thinking they were the giant leaps in our life. 296 days ago that is what I started doing. You’re probably wondering how the heck do I know its been that many days?? Well because my app tells me it’s been that long.
If I’m being honest, it was more than that, I know I posted about it on my Facebook when I started it but I wasn’t consistent, I was curious. Curious about faith. Not religion but what exactly “having faith” was.
1. complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
What did it mean to have complete trust in something? At the time, I didn’t believe in someone. I believed in the universal truth of the law of attraction. What you give is what you get. I gave a lot but felt like I wasn’t getting anything. Just more disappointment, more loneliness and more incompleteness. (Is that even a word?)
Months before I started attending a church, I liked the people’s energy. It was uplifting and I needed more of that in my life. I was searching for something that I didn’t even know existed, faith in the unknown. One of my biggest fears in exploring faith was the fact that my faith would be tested. I believed that if you had faith in God, you would most definitely have hardships. It was asked of me, do you think even if you don’t have “faith in something” you will never have hardships in your life? Death? Disappointment? Loss?
The obvious answer was no, but this changed my perspective about exploring it. I knew death, heartbreak and disappointment was unavoidable. So if that’s the case, what if faith is what gets you thru it? What did I have at that moment in time, if someone near and dear to my heart, like my dad, died, how would I get thru it? I had been so fortunate in my life to not have experienced any kind of deep sadness but I knew it would eventually happen. I had struggled with depression (self-diagnosed) in the past. Would a loss so big through me down the dark hole where I couldn’t escape? What if there was another way? What if this faith thing was it?
So I took the next smallest step I could take. I started reading and exploring the Bible. Now I grew up in a church but I couldn’t tell you anything about the Bible. I didn’t know who wrote it, didn’t know it was a series of books, or that is was living truth. Living truth, what the heck did that even mean?
I started reading the Bible to understand when and where it was written. Devotionals was the next step I could handle. Five minutes worth of reading done everyday. We all have five minutes to spare. I’ve spent more scrolling on Facebook getting lost in everyone’s highlight reel so I could devote the time to explore the life of Jesus.
I got curious the more I read. I didn’t understand who was who, or when it all happened or who the author was, but I took a bite of it every day. These small bites allowed me the ability to chew on it then embrace it. I started to learn what “having faith” was all about.
I asked questions. Meaningful ones and silly ones. And silly ones as far fetch as “where do dinosaurs come into play?” Yup that was one of my first questions. And if I’m being super transparent, I still don’t know the answer to that one. I don’t know if I’ll ever know all of the answers to my questions, but what I can tell you after 296 days is that you will learn a thing or two about yourself and what God wants to do in your life.
Exploring the Bible through devotionals felt like an enormous task. I mean, even the sheer number of devotionals are overwhelming. I tried to find out how many there were and let’s just say THOUSANDS is probably to small of a number.
Where I began… the category “New to Faith”. I read multiple descriptions from the ones that had a catchy title or a pretty graphic. (I mean, if it works for beginner’s luck in horse racing, why wouldn’t it work for here.)
I ran with it without knowing where I was going. The baby step was choosing to DO a devotional, the choice of the devotional was my giant leap. Trusting that the right devotional would speak to me. Did I choose right every time, heck-to-the-no, but I kept stepping. There were a lot of devotionals that seemed over my head but I kept thinking, “maybe tomorrow’s devotional will make it make sense.”
I watched videos about how the Bible was written, and even tried to watch the summary of the stories in the Bible. At which I admit to falling asleep, multiple times but I kept trying. Each day got a little easier, each day made a little more sense. And almost a full year later, I HAVE faith in the unknown. I HAVE faith that God will see my life and direct and lead me the way HE sees fit. Sure, I don’t know where I’m headed, but I can tell you I don’t want to go back to where I was. It was dark, lonely and hard to do things ALL on my own.
Now just as a disclaimer, I don’t necessarily do a daily devotional, some days I can only muster up the strength to read the Verse of the Day. And sometimes it has no relevance to what is going on in my life that day. But because I don’t know what the “living truth” of the Bible will bring me from day-to-day, I continue to show up 296 days strong. And I will continue to show up because in having faith, you never arrive. It is a journey with no end. Circumstances change, lives developed but His word always speaks truth and for that is worth every baby step I’ve taken.