How did you come to faith?
I came by my faith through my family; specifically through my mother and grandmother who were always very insistent that we needed to go to church very regularly. As a result of their fervor, my brother and I grew up in a small Baptist church on St. Anthony Church Road in southwest Jefferson County and we were in the church whenever the doors were open. It was a big part of our childhood.
We grew up around people that we knew well, and who treated us very much like family. Like all families, however, everyone didn’t always play nice all of the time. We had our share of conflicts and controversy, but they were almost always resolved with understanding. We were all very much ingrained into one another’s lives, almost inextricably, and that was a comforting thing growing up. The men in that church were very much involved, and they were great role models and teachers for the young people.
During my youth, nearly all of my significant socialization took place within the context of church service or church sponsored events. We went on mission trips, retreats and camping trips, together and were generally oriented toward doing most things together and spending time with one another. My identity was very much forged in the context of church life. As a result of my experiences I see religious participation as primarily a matter of fellowship, community and involvement.
How does your faith influence your life?
If I had to describe how my faith influences my life, I would probably say that it is the essential rhythm underscoring my daily experience of the world. I view God as active and interested and subtle. I think believe that God is constantly communicating with us, and that we can see God in the world if we are willing to examine it with honesty, sincerity, and completeness.
To that end, my faith leads me to view all events, tragic or happy, as necessary experiences leading to a greater eventual end. God is active everywhere all of the time. I try to make my role in the world to discern the will of God and to accept and advance it peacefully without judgment or resentment, to the extent that I am able to do so.
Why do you choose to live out your faith at Broadway?
I choose to live out my faith at Broadway because I enjoy the sense of community and kindness that its members create. I feel that I am an important and integrated part of the church community, and I look forward to spending time with the people at the church, especially during difficult weeks, or when I would rather just go back to bed.
Many times the sense that my presence is important moves me to come to church when I otherwise would not, and usually, on those days, I find something of incalculable value to carry away with me. I enjoy the fact that everyone is welcome to come and be themselves without worrying about whether they will be accepted or not. Everyone has a place, and that place is one of immediate value.