- By Indu Shanmugam
- Published 02/26/2008
Indu Shanmugam is a 20-something, college student from Oregon, USA. She is majoring in English literature and language. She also studied Theology for a short period. She wants to be a teacher. As a literature enthusiast, she enjoys literature of all types and from writers of various backgrounds from the classics, French realists, Christian writings like C.S Lewis and South Asian literature. As for her own writings, "I am still trying to find and develop my own voice." She sees the art of the written word as a way to speak about Christ and explore truth. Before she met Jesus Christ, she has been searching for the meaning of life through experimentation of other religions, philosophies and ideas. At the age of 17, she accepted Christ after a powerful encounter with God through a miracle. God's presence and deep truths in the Bible fuel her creativity. She is involved in church activities and has a love for the church and would like to see every believer grow, become closer to God and live fruitfully. She loves traveling, sipping bubble teas, theatre, music, films and hanging out with friends and has a weakness for cheesecake.
Isn't that what the internet has become? I'll confess that I haven't been a model Christian. I don't know to explain this but I've been going through a discouraging situation. It's painful and I feel beaten when I'm facing this storm of my life. On top of that, the people I trusted the most disappointed me. I feel that life is a b***** that has stabbed me in the back.
Everyday, I've been trying to carry myself and be a strong person that sails right through tough times. In reality, I feel I'm about to fall apart. I can't cry all the time and don't want to be constantly moping. Things are so discouraging that I wanted to leave Jesus. I wish I could confidently turn my back away and forget about church, my faith and Jesus without an ounce of guilt or anxiety. I cannot convert back to a non-believer. When I want to leave Jesus, my peace of mind disappears. I feel tense. I'm still upset. Then, I started questioning the divinity of Jesus. I wonder whether Jesus was like a dead beat father. Where is he when I need him?
I had a very vivid vision on my mind when I woke up. Usually I'm used to getting up cranky, feeling heavy and as though I had to drag my carcass out of bed. Instead I felt light and an eerie kind of peace. In this vision ---I am in a dark street corner and suddenly Jesus appears in front of me and there's light everywhere in his presence. I felt warmth, love and presence. I hear him say, "Even though you walk away from me, turn away from me. I have not given up on you. I wont because I don't want you to fall away into darkness and away from me..."
While, he's speaking these to me, not too far ahead there was a ditch that I would have not seen without his light and fallen right into it. And far ahead there is a gang of demon thugs ready to attack me. The world is clearly a dangerous place and was I about to try navigating the world by myself.
So, Jesus you do exist. But who are you? How am I ever going to know who you are? I remember Jesus coming to doubting Thomas and showing him his nail pierced hands. He walks towards me and shows me his hands and says, "Come and see if I am real..."
The moment I thought, "Do you love me?"
He takes my chin in his hand and looks at my eyes and says, "Yes I do...come back to me. I'll restore you. I haven't forgotten about you. There is a way out of your situation..." I feel his comfot, warmth, love and open arms.
I am stunned by his grace. He isn't angry at me even with my worst unchristian attitudes. Now, what, God? My peace of mind is restored. Since the day I decided to question whether Jesus was god and if my faith was for real I felt unpeaceful but felt there was something poking me deep within my spirit and intuition. I guess it was Jesus (living in me) trying to get my attention. I tried to ignore him and go my way. But he won't desert me. And wasn't he deserted by his disciples during the time of crucifixtion? I still feel as though I am beaten up and exhausted in my spirit. I desperately need real answers. I have a lot of basic unanswered questions. I'm questioning some of the things that I've believed. I want to know for myself it's true.
I'll just surrender and take a step in rediscovering the truths. I'll just let the truth heal me and there should be no shame is reasoning. Why should reason be anti-Christian? Could it be a pathway to connecting back with God?