I think the sign of growing older is when a person's perception and view of the world becomes more refined, sophisticated and shaped. He or she tends to view things more realistically. For me, it seems all the sudden something struck my mind when I was somewhere in my mid-twenties. My perspective on life is radically different than when I was 18. As I grow older, I'm realizing that faith is not at all equivalent to naive idealism, emotionalism and based on superficial things. I have put away those things. I am still passionate about the things that have been put in my heart. I am a visionary and a woman of passion that knows her interests, desires and dreams. Those things still exist and continue to be a driving force in my life. This does not mean that I am not open to change, the supernatural and pleasant surprises. Sometimes, the most powerful presence of the supernatural can happen when it fuses with the ordinary things of life.

In the spiritual journey, there will be times of joy but also times of deep discouragement, pain, struggle, depression and unpleasant things. Sometimes, things won't happen right away. Patience and time is necessary.

The so-called "being on fire" or zeal vanishes like a vapor if it isn't based on anything substantial. Empty zeal is meaningless and absurd. If faith is all about feeling edgy, I could easily walk into a pub and after a round of drinks I'd feel edgy, "the anointing" and great. Does that mean it's necessarily a good thing?

Discovering truth beyond the superficiality of church culture is liberating but also painful. It is also a daily battle against cynicism.

Indu Shanmugam