You’re probably wondering, doesn’t he mean “In the beginning”? Actually no, he doesn’t.

And you’ve probably heard the old adage, don’t discuss politics or religion. This is going to be one down one to go. Let’s start with religion.

I consider myself very spiritual, and I consider myself a Christian, just not very religious. To me, religion is an organized set of rules defined by men to govern how people who support that religion should live and act. To me, that sounds more like a club, not necessarily a connection to a higher power. Notice that I said, “people who support that religion”. One of my problems with religion is that sometimes people who support a religion expect everyone to support that religion. In some areas of the world or in some interpretations of a particular religion, the penalty for not following those rules is death.

I guess I should consider myself fortunate that I was raised in a time and a place where doubt or even disagreement with the predominant religion of your location did not render you headless. My family belonged to the United Methodist church in our town until about my eighth grade year. I refused to walk down front with all the other kids my age when it “was time to join the church”  (5th or 6th grade). I simply wasn’t convinced that it was something I believed yet.

Since my mother was raised as a Presbyterian, in my 8th grade year my parents joined with about six other couples in starting a Presbyterian Church in town. I did get actively involved in that all through high school.

In Sunday School, the gentleman who taught our class had a great belief in teaching us about other religions. As a result, we made many trips to different churches all throughout the area: a Jewish synagogue, the Catholic church, the Methodist Church, the Lutheran Church, the Episcopal church and we went to a Quaker Meeting. And then we would discuss everything we saw and heard.

In college I went through the typical agnostic period that so many of us do, I’m sure. But that never stopped me from inquiring about other religions and what other people believed. In fact, after God reached out to me and brought me back many years later, I continued the trend of exploring other religions. When the Jehovah’s Witnesses came, I invited them in and visited their church. When the Mormons came, they came every Tuesday night for about 4 months. They brought videos, we talked and they left me a Book of Mormon. I went to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints once. For those of you who don’t know, they’re the Mormons.

I went to the Unitarian Universalist church for about 6 months until I realized that whatever you believed, they believed.

And I have a strong logical bent, being a Chemistry major for the first half of my college years, so things have to make sense to me too. My Spiritual Faith, in large measure, is based on science, as I’ll explain shortly.