But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember then from what you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. – Revelation 2:4 & 5a, NRSV
One night, seventeen years ago, I sat on my college dorm room bed, with a friend of mine, talking about formative moments. I had already wept through the story of the lost dog that shrank up to me one day during my senior year of high school. That dog never wandered from my side. Instead I committed the ultimate act of betrayal by leaving her with my parents as I left for college. It was one of the greatest tragedies of my life, to that point.
Homesickness was pulling us into the early morning hours with a steady decline in the quality of conversation, but that was the mark of a true friend. We were in it for the long haul, and I had to bring up that crazy day when I was nine.
I had been away at GA (Girls in Action) camp for a week when I felt the Holy Spirit moving me for the first time. The feeling can only be described as unavoidable. It was overwhelming, kind of like anxiety, but happy. My head was telling me to get to the preacher, as my heart was doing the Cha Cha. At that altar call, I confessed my belief that Christ was my Savior.
I will never forget the moments after the service ended. I was giddy. With the least sophisticated comprehension of biblical transformation, I knew that I had just changed. I remembered the feeling. I remembered skipping. I remembered the event.
I needed to remember this event.
By the time I had reached my senior year of college, this event was catalogued as unexplained phenomena. My first religion course was “Women in the Bible”, and there I decided that there were too many holes and not enough intelligent evidence to fill them. I walked away from the church.
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