Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Plunge

My Protestant Christian background has taught me many great things: Saturate your mind with God’s Word, love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, renew your mind, walk in the Spirit, depend on God’s grace, set your mind on things above, walk by faith and not by sight, and the list goes on and on.

When I explored and read about Orthodoxy, I discovered they live out these axioms to the fullest.

Take for instance, “Saturate your mind with God’s Word.” We know that Jesus was God’s Word, and that this Word was made flesh. The Scriptures are a testimony of this “Word” that has existed from all eternity. He is the Great “I Am”. He is both God and man, and the Light of the world which “enlightens every man”. He is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end.

The pattern of Eastern Orthodox worship is based on the Temple and on the book of Revelation so that you, by faith, are dwelling in the heavenly temple, in the heavenly kingdom just as Abraham dwelt by faith in the promised land.

They saturate their life and worship with faith in the kingdom as affecting us in the physical world even now. All things flow from an internal conviction that they are worshipping with the angels and Saints; that the bread and wine are truly the body and blood of Christ – even as Jesus said they are.

Now, more than ever, I am convinced the Eastern Orthodox Church is the embodiment of the fullness of the faith. As a result, I have gone from seeker to catechumen as of January of this year, and from catechumen to Orthodox Christian as of last weekend. There were no sparks or fireworks, but there was joy, deep joy and profound peace, that I have found home.

Because of this, God has heightened my sensibilities to my shortcomings and sins, and I feel ever more grateful of His mercy, love and grace to sustain me by His power to live a life pleasing to Him.

Lord have mercy (40x).

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