Alternate Title: Crossing the Valley of Search: Searching for God’s Teachings and Faith
I have never considered myself a religious person. I view religion as a way of life that you live. You are your faith. You live your religion.
Before I begin, I want you to know, dearest Readers, that I always knew that the Bahá’í Faith was the right religion for me but I never knew or understood why. In fact, I was envious of those who had searched and found the right faith or religion for them. I have learned through my own personal journey that it is extremely important to know why a decision is right. I felt I skipped that part of the process. Here are a few reasons why the Bahá’í Faith was right for me….
I was raised in Mississippi, the Deep South, and as far back as I can remember, I was raised in the Bahá’í Faith. Because we were the only Bahá’ís in the area, my parents would drive an hour and a half one-way for my siblings and I to attend children’s classes and be around other Bahá’ís as well as attending Bahá’í events and holidays.
Several years later, we moved to another city that did have Bahá’ís in the area. Things are mostly the same with a few differences when you live in an actual religious community. I realize, in hindsight, that this particular situation was a “test and difficulty” (A situation or circumstances that God gives you to spiritually grown and develop in order to become a better person). The situation was a matter of someone, a rather prominent individual in my opinion, who privately with my family was OK with this one particular thing, while publically stated the opposite to our fellow Bahá’ís about this particular thing. They were a hypocrite, two-faced about this one thing which involved my family.
It took me several months to digest, to process, the situation internally; I was 16 years-old. The whole situation greatly disturbed me and I slowly separated myself from their family and them. This event made me realize, once I stopped attending Bahá’í events and holidays at their home, that I practiced my faith because everyone else I knew did. I participated to be included, not because I felt connected to God, Baha’u’llah, or any other religious-type thing.
I lost my faith.