From Agnostic to Believer: I've Often Wondered and Wandered.

  This is one of my best friends from back home. His name is Mike and I look up to him in so many different ways. I love his missionary blog and this is a post from it. He served courageously in Chile until he received a medical release and he documents those events here on his blog. Check it out when you get a chance.

I've often wondered and wandered.

In my politics, in my art, and in my philosophy, I looked for solid ground to stand on. Radical doubt was my mantra and pure reason my motto.  I waded through swamps of disbelief and skepticism, climbed mountains of intellectual rebellion, and walked miles to a lonely land where I was my own deity, my own creator.

In my world, faith was superstitious and silly: an uneducated man's game.

But my world was a small one, self-centered, and self-relied. My paths were unsure and my eyes blinded to the infinite power of hope. I didn't smile much and cynicism became my religion. Little did I know the happiness I was denying myself and little did I realize the joy I could yet have.

I slowly began to realize that the reason and philosophies I so easily ascended to were not convincing necessarily because they were true, but because of the arguer's skill.
As Steve Martin's Toby the Horse once wrote, 
A big horselaugh to the human idea that reason ever actually changed anyone's mind or proved anything beyond a person's ability to argue. I could argue that the sky is green if I wanted. And win. Why? Because I could study enough to corner you on every proposition; I could become quick-minded on the green-sky-issue. I could have your head spinning with the twists and curves I would throw at you.
Such unprovable arguments such as those contesting and proving the existence of God were just that: unprovable.
It was then that I realized belief was a choice. I finally understood that "faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1). Watching the examples of a close friend and many family members, I slowly but surely began to exercise faith. Setting doubt aside, I believed to believe.
And I found hope, I found joy, I found direction, and I found purpose. The more I trusted in God (hoping that there even was a God), the more He blessed me and gave me the strength to hope even more. He confirmed to me my paths in deeply personal ways and He helped me to achieve lifelong dreams. Personal miracles were realized and I found in my stubborn heart a love for Deity and his son, Jesus Christ. 
Now I go on a mission not because I can prove to you that the Church is true or that there is a Creator (I can't), but because of the happiness and blessings I have found in the unseen power of Christ's Atonement.
I go because I owe it to my brother the Savior, I go because I owe it to my Father in Heaven, and I go because I only hope that others may desire my help into the same amazing grace and joy I have experienced.

After all God has given me, I would be remiss if I didn't.
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