As I lay in bed this morning in a lucid state of dreaming, I recalled a memory from long ago. I was at an east Texas camp with a group from school. I was 11 at the time.
We were walking through the trails with our group counselor discussing all that surrounded us. We stopped for a discussion. I don't recall how we breached the topic of conversation, but I recall very strongly my response to a personal statement that the group counselor made. He told us that he was a naturalist and that the trees were his chapel. I think I would have been ok if he had stopped there... But no... He went on to inform us that he didn't believe that there was a God. That God was a mythology created by men to control the masses.
I remember standing with my feet firmly pressing into the ground... My hands pressed to my side with my fingernails pressed into my fist. I told him that there was most assuredly a God and that God was the director of every tree that he worshipped. That God was all around us... And furthermore... He should be ashamed of himself for telling a group of children that God did not exist. I didn't do this with a childlike faith. No... I did this with my faith as firmly planted as my feet. With a steely resolve and little doubt that I would die for my faith in Jesus Christ where I stood, if the need be.
Most who knew me as a child probably never thought of me as someone who even knew Christ, let alone defend Him so fiercely. I never discussed it. As a teenager, I really didn't care to go to church. Fought against it, actually. Even as a young wife, I chose to marry in a courthouse. It was never Christ I was against... I knew this. (I'm aware this makes me a terrible christian. I guess I take the whole "personal relationship" clause seriously.) I don't recall ever not knowing Christ. Even when He felt far from me... I never doubted Him. It was me stumbling away. Not in defiance, mind you... But as a toddler taking first steps away from his mother.
I know that it is said that Christianity is not something that is inherited. We are each supposed to make our own commitment to Him. I have just never felt a time when I wasn't committed to the knowledge that He died for me. I've had the alter call. I know that I was (am) a lost sinner, but I feel that He has been with me since time began. I KNOW that is not the right thing to say.... :-) But it is what I carry with me. I am so very flawed... And so very thankful for His grace. I am truly unworthy of such a gift.
This brings me back to my dream. I'm not sure why this memory comes unbidden from time to time. As I lay in bed pondering this memory I began to wonder if I were still that courageous. Would I have the courage to die for my faith... Would I die for Him as He died for me, If the need should arise? I pray so.