Sunday Post 113: Time for Renewal

Maybe Easter is less about the ham and eggs and more about renewing or thinking about your spirituality.

I work for an organization with a mission that compels us to help people grow in spirit, mind and body.  Because I’m not that smart, challenging my mind comes easily.  Happens every day.  And yea, much to my eldest daughter’s chagrin, I’m still doing curls with large cans of baked beans.  It’s the spirit part that takes a bit more work for me.

Before 2009, my spiritual life was fairly rote.  Someone invited me to a prayer breakfast one time and the speaker suggested that we use P. R. A. Y, as a way to cover all of our bases in talking with God.  P – praise, R – repent, A – anyone or anything and Y – yourself.

I imagine God was as bored with our conversations as I was.

When Lisa got sick, my relationship with God moved from stale to passionate.  I talked with Him constantly.  I prayed from deep down in my soul for His assistance.  I begged him, with every fiber of my being, to save my wife.

I made promises to God – thought I could maybe cut a deal.  I didn’t keep them, but I guess I could argue that He didn’t do what I asked either.

At times over the past three years, I’ve been so mad at God that I questioned His very existence.  I cussed him out on several occasions, words I wouldn’t dare say in front of my mother.  And at the time, it made me feel a bit better.  Maybe I could inflict an inkling of the pain He had inflicted on me.

What I found in this newly forming relationship was a God with broad shoulders, one who could take my rantings.

You see, I don’t believe that spirituality is predicated on bobbing your head up and down in agreement as you enter the doors of the church.  I no longer believe it is about saying your nightly PRAYer.  It’s much more than that.

It’s passionate.  It’s real.  It’s like a relationship with your spouse or your parent.  There are questions, disappointments and incredible joys.

Who says we have to just accept what we’re told?  Who says we can’t question?

In fact, the more I questioned, the more I learned.  The more I expressed my anger, the greater forgiveness I felt.

God didn’t turn his back on me.  Nah – He allowed my tirades, and He moved a couple of steps closer.

Use this Easter to break your spiritual habits.  Renew yourself in body, mind and spirit.

Leave a comment


  1. Mom

     /  March 31, 2013

    Yep, you’ve got it. You sound down right Baptist today. That’s a moderate Baptist if I every saw one. Mix it with that Presbyterian and you’ve got a faith to live by.

  2. Full disclosure: I’m agnostic. But if more people talked about God the way you do religion would make a little more sense to me. Hope you have a great Easter with your family. And thanks for the food for thought.

  3. Beautiful! Striving for a personal real relationship with Him is where the rubber meets the road. Good stuff, thanks for writing!

  4. What a lovely Easter message.

  5. Maffitt

     /  March 31, 2013

    This is better than any Easter Sermon I have heard anywhere! Frances Maffitt

    Sent from my iPhone

  6. Cris

     /  April 1, 2013

    Very well written. One of your best.

  7. Francie Reding

     /  April 2, 2013

    Someone once told me that your faith is deepest when you question it the most. I think you nailed it my friend!

  8. Great post. My trust in and relationship with God was completely re-calibrated with my wife’s sickness and death. My faith has been challenged, much as yours. But, I suppose that thing we wish to strengthen cannot be unless we are forced to exercise it (i.e. patience, faith) – and that only comes with resistance to it.

    I am a neighbor of yours here in Cary. I’ve began writing as a catharsis – as it seems you have. Perhaps you wrote prior. You appear to have done a fantastic job with your life and family! I draw inspiration from you. God bless you. My two girls are 6 and 10. My wife died a year and a half ago. Best to you.
    – Morrison

    • Danny Tanner

       /  April 24, 2013

      Let’s grab coffee one day. It’s not easy – my faith comes and goes. Sometimes I see it clearly – and at times I wonder if I ever had it.


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