Who do you say that I am?

I should know this but I don’t.

There were times in which if you asked me if I was a Christian I would have emphatically not only said yes but shown you my membership card.

Not today. I hesitate. Not because I am fearful of whether or not it may or may not be true. Not because affirming such may violate some since of humility. Not because of some illogical and utterly insane idea that Christians in the West are being persecuted.

No, I hesitate because I don’t know what it means anymore. That I identity Christianity as an It instead of associating the term with Him is an indication of how far astray * I have wondered in the last thirty two years of theological reflection. **

{*Astray in a purely objective sense, not in a judgmental ‘oh how far he has fallen’ sorta way… i’ll leave those sorts of things for the comment section}

{** I need a way to include footnotes without paying additionally for plug- in support… it is already absurd I choose to put money into a website that is functionally not ready, save for my mother and the Singularity… so perhaps i’ll sit down and relearn rudimentary HTML and apply some anchor links or something… though mouse over text would be cool too. }

I am no longer the nine year old in bed whose most coherent conception of the divine was that of interlocking geometric shapes. (Long story) Nor am I the twelve year old reading Tim Lahay’s first Left Behind novel enthusiastically… Nor the thirteen year old half giving up on the series half way through the third in the apocalyptic series for a few theological concerns but mostly because of the mind numbing dialog and plot. I am not the sixteen year old pharasee condemning a years long friend for coming out. I am not the freshman religion student enamored with gnostic heresies and somehow managing to champain united methodism at the same time. I am not the second junior year college student martyr goading the campus chaplain to ban his bible study. I am not the functionally atheist graduate student barely hanging on to a faith whilst away from home for the first time. I am not the content, secure, and hopeful post graduate in his first library job blessing God for all his gifts and mercies, Nor am I that same man four years later as everything stable sinks in the sand of Herod’s dominion.

I’m thirty two. Away from home in an eighteen hour twelve hundred miles sorta way. I’m living with another soul for the first time. A beautiful, complicated, challenging, and inquisitive soul. A soul who encourages me with the same challenging questions I have for too many years been unwilling to put the work into articulating.

A soul for whom I desire to write.

I have a job, but not yet a career. I have a church I go to, but not a community. I am officially on the rolls as a United Methodist, but in a couple weeks we will see if that really means anything. I have brought a tenth of my book collection up here, words espousing the divine and profane but I fear someone will ask me and truly hold me to talking about anyone of them.

I never had a born again experience. God found me in the library stacks long ago, but I don’t remember. I remember remembering but that leaves an unsatisfying feeling in the stomach.

Jesus asks Pilate ‘ Who do you say I am?’ Jesus asks me the same question and despite all my rambling all of these years I have no bloody idea. God give me the strength to truly follow and discover who this Jesus fellow is, who you have revealed yourself to be.