Wednesday, June 26, 2013

I've Got To Take A Moment

Would you believe that I have gotten some questions privately as to why I've become Catholic? I really appreciate the ones that start out like this: "Not trying to trap you, but what were the reasons?" I love that one, honestly. Because all I have to do is tell the story. I'm not at all interested in combat when it's just an honest question. I know that I'm not due to win any prizes for winsomeness and charitable dialogue (Lord, have mercy!) and frankly, dialogue is not the purpose of this blog, in the first place. This blog is Draft 1.37 of whatever comes into my head. I'm straight-up opining here, hopefully intelligently.

Also, I totally understand that some ex-Catholics would feel a little bit threatened by me; it's entirely possible that you lived an entire Catholic life without getting the memo on Jesus. That makes me cry. It makes me cry with joy that God in His mercy found you where you are. BELIEVE ME, we are all thrilled that the message of grace and salvation in Christ Jesus has made your very soul and life ring with purpose. This is not a "Catholic Church is awesome, and everyone else sucks" kind of blog. It is frank, and it is the work of someone who believes what the Catholic Church teaches to be revealed by God. Yet my life as a Christian going from Protestant to Catholic is a story of some truth flowering into the fullness of truth.

It actually angers me that you who grew up Catholic in many cases were deprived of that simple message of forgiveness and joy that is the plain and simple gospel, either by a culture that quenched the Spirit, or by lies. It wounds my heart, and I know it wounds Jesus' heart.

But I need to shoot you straight: I actually believe this stuff. This is true. I'm a real Catholic. I think you should be, too. So, I need to ask you to trust me. If I tell you that I was baptized in the Presbyterian Church in America, that I led Bible studies for 4 1/2 years, was a part of Reformed University Fellowship, went to seminary, where my torrid love-affair with God and his word in Scripture continues unabated into the present day--and I'm still Catholic--maybe it's possible that you are mistaken in your assumption that Rome teaches a false gospel. Just possible. I'll do you one better: I think Reformed theology leads right to the Catholic Church. That is, once terms are defined, and the superfluous knots and assumptions are untied.

As far as I know, I'm still the same guy. But I don't see rules when I breathe the Catholic air; I don't feel fear as I live the Catholic life, at least not the way you mean it. I know the love of Christ our Savior; Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for He is with me.

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