Sunday 7 September 2014

Are you searching?

For much of my life, this summed me up. I was searching and seeking and always looking to the next thing. I was sure that with the next big achievement I would start to feel different but sadly I remained discontent with what I had and always sure there was more out there, that the next thing would fill that void or hole that I knew was there inside me.

I did what was expected, I got a part-time job, I passed my GCSE's, I went to college, I did well, I got a place at Uni and I did well, I got into a good training program after uni and I moved away. I held management positions with a lot of responsibility at a very young age, I earned loads, I bought new cars, I went on tons of abroad holidays, I had lots of diamonds and a massive wardrobe of clothes and still I knew there was more, there was something else out there. Something waiting for me.

Little did I know that the hole I had was a God shaped one. Nothing that was going to fill it when I was searching in the wrong places. Riches from this world and transient possessions just do not fill that kind of hole.

But I didn't know that I was seeking God, I just knew I was seeking something and nothing was working, all the temporary plasters I stuck over my needs just fell off and fell away.

20 Juy 2002

I now treasure the day my fiance told me that he wanted to get married in St Francis church in WGC. I called the vicar to find out how to arrange this and he told me that we'd then need to attend the Alpha course so we understood more about Christianity and the three-way commitment we were heading towards. His was so quick and insistent that I came off the phone booked in to attend the course the very next day. I thought my finance would see sense and we could be married elsewhere but no he wanted to attend the Apha course.

'Please' I begged him, 'it will be full of old biddies quoting the bible at us, I don't want to go'. 'Christians are a bunch of nutters, all loons, they wear socks and sandals, they will preach to me, it is not my bag at all'. I put up every excuse in the book but he was quite adamant we ought to try and thank goodness. Alpha was my entry to my faith and a love of Jesus that has now been with me for over 12 years now.

My life has been changed and I am complete, I don't have the hole anymore. I am content and I am joyful. There is no need to search anymore as I have found the ultimate, the one who loves me unconditionally and makes my world rock.

If you feel like you are searching and nothing is filling your need then I urge you to consider an Alpha course. They are run all over the country by thousands of different churches, search here for a course close to you. They will not force you, preach to you or convert you. What normally happens is a really social meal with a group of equally unsure people and then through the use of videos, guest speakers and group discussion you explore together issues like 'Is there more to life than this?', 'Who is Jesus?' and 'How and why should I pray?'.

The thing I really loved about Alpha is that practically everyone there is not a Christian and you are free to be honest.  If you want to shout 'but I don't believe in God' then that is OK, people will chat with you and acknowledge your view as valid as their own.

Go on, why don't you try it out? What have you got to lose?

The church that we are attending at the moment (Kings Church, Hastings) has an Alpha taster night with free curry and a licensed bar on Thursday 9th October at 7.30pm. Check out the short video and see if it might be for you. I'll meet you there if you need some company, just let me know and I can book us both in.

Oh and Mum if you are reading this (and I know you are) go on, I just know you will love the community of church. Why don't you try out the Alpha at Christchurch, it starts on Weds 1st October at 7.15pm.

If you are a regular reader you'll know that I'm very open about the fact I'm a Christian and that it is central to my life but I don't particularly preach or force my view on you, so I'll hope you understand that with this post I'm not telling you that you have to go to Alpha, I'm just saying it if feels right try out, I don't think you will be disappointed. It will clarify things one way or the other for you and that has to be a good thing.

Be blessed, Mich x
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