From the time that I was a small boy I’ve had an awareness of God, a hunger. As a teenager I looked into philosophy, eastern religions, music, and back-to-nature lifestyles to try to put life in perspective. At eighteen I accepted Jesus’ invitation to come follow Him and dedicated my life to Him. Through rebellion and anger I left the Catholic Church and fellowshipped among “independent” Christian churches. In fact, I became a Protestant pastor for twelve years. Independently I tried to listen to Him and over many years composed a theology similar to a patchwork quilt; insights and perspectives from various books, speakers and acquaintances that were often times very good.
While I’m very thankful for all I learned as a Protestant pastor, I became aware that I was not standing on objective truth. Rather, I was standing on subjective truth, truth as I perceived it. This left me with a foundation that was as big as myself. By studying salvation history I discovered that God, as a loving Father, was trying to raise a family, and it was within His family plan that truth was passed on. This realization, among others, led me back to the Catholic Church, the Church founded on Peter and the Apostles.
When I returned to the Catholic Church I picked up the narrative thread of my story (Tweet this). I found the form and direction that gave me freedom and life. Accepting and embracing the Catholic Church brought a deep resonance of peace within my soul. For when I picked up the narrative thread of my story, I found that intertwined within that thread was His story.
In this series we will look at how God gradually revealed Himself to man throughout history, starting with Adam and Eve, then culminating in what would finally become His one holy Catholic Church. Emphasis will be placed on both the role of “family” and the value of “story” in salvation history. Both are important in terms of personally and corporately embracing and transmitting the Church’s message. In addition we will discuss the importance of understanding the “big picture” within the Bible and introduce a practical way to read the books of the Bible as a contiguous narrative.
You are invited to come on this family adventure. Along the way you will begin to see why God created you and what your future holds. King David, Israel’s second king, sums up God’s desire to see all people as members of His family when he says in Psalm 68:6a (NIV), “God sets the lonely in families.”
Back in the 1970’s the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team was on a hot roll. The colors of black and yellow could be seen on the city’s every street corner. Every coffee shop and school was a buzz with pennant prognosticators. To sum up their sense of unity, pride and identity the city adopted the pop song “We Are Family” by Sister Sledge. People often use the term “family” to describe people that are so close that they are…well, family. A business where associates work closely together is often referred to as “one big happy family.” In his Letter to Families, Pope John Paul II sums up how humanity views the concept of family as a universal integration point, the “fundamental community in which the whole network of social relations is grounded.”
This post is an excerpt from His Story Is Your Story, a chapter by Jeff Cavins in Catholic for a Reason: Scripture and the Mystery of the Family of God, by Scott Hahn.