Essential Aspects for Faith: Life under the board 2.
Coming to Faith
So we all start out living life under the board. But then some seem to crawl out from under the board. This blog continues the metaphor to explain the experience of coming to faith in Jesus.
Coming to faith begins with an encounter with someone who has somehow, already crawled out from under the board and discovered a whole new world. They start to tell us about this whole new world they have discovered. We are often a bit bewildered by them.
They tell us about life outside of being under the board, metaphorical hills and mountains and sunshine and sunsets and warmth and beauty and colour and light. They talk about finding God, forgiveness, joy, peace, security, purpose and to quote Jesus himself, "Life in all its fullness" (John 10:10).
But we think, “but I see all the real colour and light and beauty there is in my own life - under the board”. But they say, “No, your eyes have just adjusted to the darkness under the board - there is so much more to it and you can see it for your self if you are willing”.
They tell us about things we cannot really understand. It’s as though we have never seen a waterfall but they have seen Niagra falls and they sketch a picture of it with a dull pencil on scrappy paper - and they’re no artist. They’re trying to show us something that they are excited about, but what we see doesn’t look that impressive. They urge us to believe and crawl out from under the board ourselves, but though we can perhaps see a glimmer of the reality they speak of, and we cannot deny the impact of it on their own life, yet still, life under the board is all we know.
To crawl out from under the board is to leave behind all we know - and that’s the problem. All our security is right here under the board. As miserable as much of it is - most of the time we are able to cocoon ourselves from the worst of life’s horrors and live our little lives avoiding the worst of it - and as unsafe and insecure as we are, it is because of our insecurity we cannot let go of the meagre security life under the board offers us.
Not only that, but the moment we tell other people that we are interested in this life outside (Christianity) - they laugh at us and mock us and tell us that it is losers that crawl out from under the board. They tell us it is boring and rubbish and life under the board is better. They would never crawl out from under the board themselves and they don’t want you to either. They want to keep you under the board with them. They can see, just like you that those who do crawl out from under the board seem to have found something - but they don’t have the courage to crawl out themselves, or there’s just too much under the board they love and want to keep (because it is all they know), so they try to deter you from leaving.
But there are other reasons why it’s easier to stay under the board. You see, as we begin to move toward the light outside, it begins to shine upon us - and we begin to see not only the good things outside - but we also see in ourselves what we could never see in the darkness under the board, we begin to see our own dirt. Embarrassment and shame and pride drive us back into hiding under the board - therefore many choose to remain under the board.
But thankfully not all. Some feel compelled. They know they have to do this - they have to get out into the light, into the technicolored, 3D, vibrant, wonderful world outside the board. As they begin to climb out, for the first time they begin to see for themselves what their friends were telling them. They look at the black and white pencil sketches their friends sketched for them of Niagra falls, and at last they can see the actual Niagra falls and they can now see exactly how those poor sketches relate. Their hearts burst with excitement as they begin to discover wonder after wonder in the new world.
There is so much more to life than all we know.