Posted in Living this Life

I believe

The words pounded through my head as my feet pounded the pavement.

“I believe in God the Father Almighty…”

It feels like yesterday in my heart and soul.

bruge streets

“Creator of heaven and earth…”

These thoughts crowding my mind – racing so fast, they can make you fear for your sanity sometimes.

I believe in Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son our Lord … MY Lord!”

How did I end up here? Trying to escape the cycle of bombarding thoughts, walking the streets of Brugge, Belgium, simply because I didn’t know where to go or what to do? How to quiet the noise inside my head – screaming at me from the moment I woke up until I finally found escape in sleep?

“He was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried”

It had been a long journey to this moment. Months in Amsterdam, telling people about my Jesus – the one who promises freedom. All the while, crumbling inside from my own lack of freedom. Trapped in my insecurities, in my doubts, in the dysfunction I had come to see as “normal”. To set me free, God had to undo me; so here I was, walking these streets, undone.

And I remembered those days when I was a kid. Long Sundays in church, reciting a liturgy I thought was old and “dead”.  They called this the “Apostle’s Creed” – it didn’t mean much to me back then – just words we said every week.

“He descended into hell. On the third day, He rose again. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father…”

I remembered sitting in that college cafeteria, telling a wise professor that I was beyond all that now. I was exploring new ways to worship. He didn’t say much, only gently reminded me to not forget those who had gone before me – “You are standing on over 500 years of history…”

“I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic  (Christian) church…”

Suddenly the scrambled thoughts started slowing down. I found myself mouthing the words, savoring each precious morsel… “the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, and the life everlasting”

bruge 2

There are many ways to worship, but in this moment, walking those old cobblestone streets, God set me free from the tyranny of the new. He brought those words to life in my heart on that day in Brugge, Belgium, and I no longer had to figure anything out – I knew. And that simple knowing quieted the screaming voices in my head.

My God showed me that as long as I clung to what I knew was true, He would lead me through what I didn’t know. Though emotions may soar to great heights and plummet to sordid depths, nothing can shake the reality of this foundation. I BELIEVE IN GOD THE FATHER – I wanted to shout it from the rooftops… Here is where I could plant my feet and not be shaken.

In these days of confusion and fear around the world, it doesn’t take much to feel like a “wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind” (James 1:6) Headlines scream terrifying news at us, the pundits on TV tell us what (and who) to believe, people are displaced, having to flee their homes – it’s hard to know who to follow and what to trust in anymore.

“When you hear of wars and revolutions, do not be frightened” (Lk 21:9)  I still believe in God, the Father Almighty”

We are surrounded by the constant shifting shadows of life – today I choose to plant my feet on the one thing that will never change. I still believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son our Lord”

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.” (Mt 24:35)  I still believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, and the life everlasting

And in the threatening waves, Jesus whispers, “Peace, be still”.

 

 

Author:

Just me... walking this life with Jesus

5 thoughts on “I believe

  1. Sara, I LOVE this, but am going to make one observation that I hope you will accept in the spirit of love in which I make it. This is the Apostles Creed, the creed that I say every day, several times a day.

    Most scholars believe that the creed was developed in the first nine centuries after the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is a response to the heresies and deviations from the earliest teachings of the church, teachings handed down directly from Jesus Himself and His apostles.

    The word “catholic” in the creed is very important to me.

    In its original, ancient form, we would say “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.”

    Catholic means universal. The ancient form of the creed and the use of the word “catholic” does not exclude denominations other than Catholicism, because at the time, our faith was universal. It was catholic.

    Since that time, men (humanity), being “smarter” than we think we are, have split the simple into the complex. Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox and other divisions within the Catholic Church, some caused by disagreements within the Church, some caused by political divisions. For instance, the Armenian Church was separated from the rest of the world for years, yet the similarities in worship with the Roman Catholic Church are stunning, and frankly, they overwhelm me. Such is the work of Christ… still… here on Earth.

    Then of course, Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformation, and now we have countless Christian denominations.

    We are still, in our core beliefs, catholic. Small c.

    That is so vital to me.

    I hope you don’t mind my comment and accept it in the spirit in which it is made. In love. In reverence. In appreciation of your hopeful message. But also to further dialogue and ecumenism.

    We are one faith. We have our differences in interpretation. We are human. Yet we all worship one God, we believe that He sent His Son, that His Son hand-picked ordinary men to be His successors.

    And to encourage and help us teach those who don’t know Him.

    And to lead us all home to Him.

    Like

    1. Thank you so very much for taking the time to read my little blog. I do appreciate your input and the time you took to share the history of the Apostles Creed. In my concern to not cause any confusion amongst those who don’t know this history or understand the “small c” use of the word catholic as “universal” church, I opted for the translation of “Christian”. I do understand and respect your concerns, and am grateful you brought them to light. Praying God’s richest blessings on you!

      Like

  2. Wow Sara! I want to share this with everyone I know! The Lord has annointed your writing ability and I pray you will continue to let Him use this gift through you to share His love.

    I grew up in the Episcopal church and the Apostles Creed was a foundation I have always treasured. I wish our Baptist church would emphasize it more!

    Thank you for sharing your story!

    Like

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