Though disillusioned with the Evangelical Christian organisation, I still harboured a strong interest in Jesus's teachings. I then came across a book called Salvar a Los Ninos Soldados by Gervasio Sanchez. This book focused on the work of Chema Caballero, a Spanish missionary in Sierra Leone. As I moved from one chapter to another, I felt a great joy in my heart. Unlike several priests I had met until that stage in my life, Chema was quite different; he managed to support the Catholic Church without trying to impose his views on the readers. He also came across as a person who enjoyed thinking rather than simply regurgitating dogmas. The book had a profound impact on my views about God. Indeed, I decided to identify with the Catholic Church once again and to take a fresh look at Jesus.
Brushing aside some of the beliefs associated with the Mormon Church, virtually all the people we met who belonged to that organisation were really friendly. Unlike most of the other individuals I knew, they were genuinely interested in spending quality time with friends.
When I wondered about why the many Mormons we met were so pleasant, I drew the conclusion that this was mainly because of their efforts to apply the teachings of Jesus to their lives. I had always believed that Jesus was a remarkably positive person, but I had met few people whose Christian principles were consistent with their everyday actions. With the Mormons, it was quite different.
Nowadays, I still have many friends who are Mormons. Having said that, I feel more attracted to the Roman Catholic Church. I believe that the latter provides a better chance to those people who admire Jesus to translate their faith into action in the everyday world.
At this stage, what are my current views about Jesus? To me, he is a role model. Having lived so many centuries ago and having never written any books himself, he might be misunderstood by countless individuals. Yet, I believe that Jesus was a person who wanted to show us that we could all live happily together. He taught us about the importance of love. He was interested in human wellbeing and his several healings bear witness to this. He often talked about his heavenly father and I do not feel that I have anything to lose by believing in God. At the end of the day, how could I show that God is a myth?
Unfortunately, many people perceive God as a stern police officer that is always ready to judge and punish us every time we do something wrong. The God I believe in, represented on Earth by Jesus, is a God of LOVE. Real love always seeks to heal, to improve, to build. I always say to myself that if I, an imperfect human being with all my biases, am able to forgive the person who has hurt me most in my life, imagine what God - the most loving entity in the universe - is capable of doing!!!
In the past, when I brushed God and Jesus to the side, I tried to find lasting happiness by resorting to other things. For a long time, I also believed that I would always be able to rely on a number of individuals considered as extremely good friends or family members. Experience has clearly shown that all those people who have not acted in a Christ-like way have ended up going their separate ways in order to pursue a life dictated by very selfish motives.
To conclude, I would like to say that the main factor which prevented me from believing in God for a long time in my life was the thought that God might be a human invention. Nowadays, that possibility no longer troubles me. Regardless of whether God exists or not, the values promoted by Jesus are good ones. The notion of transforming this universe into a place characterised by peace and love does not need to rest exclusively on faith; it is a goal which all true Catholics should aspire to achieve. The transformation of the universe into a better place need not await a miracle; we can all contribute to it starting from today. Starting from now.
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