I believe in a higher power. A creator that created this world we live in, and often I am not grateful for this life that I am living. When it comes to whether God exists, many people go astray waiting for proof. I was also one of those people. In 2014, I left the church and decided to go on my own personal journey and discover God for myself. I wanted to find out if God exists in this world, and what is my purpose in this lifetime. Without purpose, I realized that many people struggle to exist. Without a belief in the creator I see many struggle to be grateful for life. What I found in the last few years is that I am not alone. In my most loneliest of nights I would feel a presence outside of myself. Sometimes I feel watched over. There are many times I was near death, and something outside of my control saved me. In my darkest nights where I was crying in emotional and physical pain, something inside of me sparked and I pushed through. What I discovered is that there is something much bigger than me existing in this world with me and everyone here. I want to know “Who and What is God”?

Everything I had previously learned about God came from the Bible and other religious texts. However, if many people have been to different churches, they would know that sometimes the message differs depending on the messenger. Many people have walked and continue to walk this world claiming to be messengers of God. They claim to know what God wants of the people and what happens after we leave this Earthly realm. Many use the same texts I have read to deliver this message. When I left the church I wanted to shed the layers behind who God is, and what God wants from me. I wanted to find this on my own. I began to try to see God from a bigger picture than each word in the Bible. What was the overall message of the Bible? What is the overall objective? What ideas in these books came from God directly? Was the messages from God interpreted correctly and delivered correctly? Who wrote the Bible and other religious texts? I will talk about what I have learned so far, what spoke true to me, and what was verified in my research, visions, and dreams.

The first thing I want to note is that all religious texts were heavily written by men. The Bible was written by men who claimed to be prophets and messengers of God. Then later during the Council of Nicaea, the Christian doctrine was created for all Christians to follow as a guideline. Since then many councils (of mostly men) continued to construct what we know as the Bible today. This text and other religious texts were written by imperfect humans, and not God itself. The fact that the Bible was written by men was also unsettling for me as a woman. What was unsettling was how women were discussed in the Bible and the messages preached to women in the church. When my views later changed to a feminist perspective, I was awaken to an objective from patriarchs to force women into submission and for male humans to rule over women. This also kept me from going back to the church over the years, and continue to seek my path to God on my own without the help of a male pastor.

“I wish they knew that God was just teaching” – Common

I realized to find a higher power, one must do so on their own to avoid the patriarchal game of power at play. Religion and the wars that have centered religion has forced people to no longer believe in God or a higher power. The way God has been used in ways to oppress others have caused people to lose faith in a creator. Scientists also expect to prove the existence of God in a laboratory or another scientific method. What they can all agree on is that they didn’t create this world themselves, so who did? I understand if people don’t believe in God. I also realized that you don’t have to believe in something for it to exist. Your truth is your truth only, and people don’t have to believe it for it to be true. What if the same can be said about God? The things that have been said about God came from humans who presented themselves as prophets and messengers. This also created the idea that God is coming to save the human race from hell. However if you read the Bible and other religious texts, God sent a savior to save the human race from their sins. God sent angels and teachers to guide people in this journey called Life. According to the Bible, God is an overseer and watches over the world. Not save the world. How can God save people from a world it created? Maybe God is just teaching. Maybe it is up to us the people to save ourselves and work together collectively to keep Life going. Maybe God sent us all the tools we needed to save ourselves, and the sacrifices we make everyday to push through is our lessons being taught to us. Perhaps we as a people have the power to change the world.

Because of all the mixed messages about God and God’s purpose, many people question the existence of God. I realized that many people only question God when things aren’t going their way. When life is going well, many people don’t question God or God’s existence. Many aren’t questioning God when things are going right and luck is on their side. I also realized many only pray to God when they are hurt or in distress. Many become angry with the creator when life is tough, and ask aloud, “why me?”, but neglect to ask themselves, “what am I supposed to learn from this?”. Many people who don’t believe in God question God because of what they are taught and it doesn’t make sense to them. Yet why not question the source of this information, verses God itself. That’s when they begin to speak blasphemous words or become ungrateful for a life that was given to them. Usually in the last moments in life you see people “find God” or believe in a higher power. Some people’s last words are often a prayer, or a dying wish before death. Many have even called out to their mother….

I realize every day that this world is full of ungrateful children who constantly want to be pleased and not take accountability over their own life. When things go bad they look for a scapegoat, and often God has been that scapegoat. Many blame God for all the bad is going on in their life, and sometimes people blame “the devil”. But how wonderful is it that in our darkest moments we can still find people who love us wholly and completely, even when we are ungrateful for it all? I see these people as Angels in our lives. Human nature is inherently selfish and people toy with the idea of God through ups and downs. Many people are also ungrateful for those in their life that help heal them, teach them, and guide them. That’s life, but someone gave it to us. Should we at least be thankful for that? Someone or something created this world we live in, and there is beauty all around us, even in all of the chaos taking place. This world is beautiful, the people are beautiful, and nature is wonderful. I am thankful for it. I thank the creator for it all.

I see God the same as Love. People don’t believe in Love until it is proven to them. There are many ways that people can prove their Love, or that Love exists. Love is not an object that can be seen, touched, smelled, or heard, but it is felt. You can’t put Love in a scientific facility and prove it exists. You just know, and believe that it does. There are also many ways to interpret Love, and deciphering Love language. Similar to God. The etymology of Love is “to care, to desire, and to praise” (www.etymonline.com). Isn’t that what is said about God? God loves, God cares, people desire God, and praise God. I see God as Love. God is Love.

“What If God Was One Of Us?” – Joan Osborne

If many people read the Bible, they will see that God never asked to be worshiped or praised. Only believed. God only asked humanity to work as one and the consequences for doing the opposite. Many people seem to be waiting for God to “reveal” itself, but what if God was one of us? They say, “If God exists, why haven’t God came to show itself?”. Do you think God will want to be discovered? Imagine being someone that most people are waiting to solve all their problems that was created by other people? Most conflicts happens among people, but people are waiting for God to save them. If God was one of us, we wouldn’t even know. Similar to how many authors remain anonymous. Many don’t want to reveal themselves, because they value their privacy. They don’t want to be bombarded with questions, or harassed by people. Many would bombard God with everything going on wrong in their lives and constantly expect miracles. Many are out looking for God, but what if they didn’t have to go far to discover God? What if there is a power within us all, that connects us directly to God. What if….. to discover God all we have to do is stay right where we are, in silence, and listen. Perhaps this is what I realized I needed to do when I left the church years ago.

“I searched the universe and found myself within Her eyes.” – Guns N’ Roses

I realized personally, that when I was in silence and isolation I found God. In my darkest moments I realized something more powerful than myself walks beside me and guides me through my toughest times. When I learn from my lessons, I am rewarded with many blessings that I am thankful for. I have had teachers that show me the way when I am lost. In the last year I have been going through many battles outside of the physical and metaphysical. My dreams became more vivid, and my visions became more clearer. Many times I thought I was going crazy, and couldn’t explain what I was seeing and feeling. I consider myself very emotionally intelligent, but what I was going through was emotions I realized I couldn’t put into words. It felt like death was coming for me, but I was surviving every battle. All of these moments happened when I was physically alone, but was I really? Many times I felt like something was trying to communicate with me. Many times I understood what was being told to me. I felt like I was transforming, and the pain felt like 1,000 deaths over and over each day. I would wake up the next morning just happy to still be here, alive, well, and existing. It was that moment I felt as though an Angel was watching over me. Guiding me through all of these battles I couldn’t understand. This Angel was communicating to me through my dreams, and it made sense to me. When I tried to explain the phenomenons to other people some understood, and some didn’t. The ones that understood were very spiritually sound people. I knew then that this was a spiritual battle I have been going through. The battle was much bigger than me. A bigger picture was revealed to me. A war was revealed to me. I saw healers on one side and destroyers on the other side. I wanted to be on the side of the healers and warriors, and not the demons I saw. Some of those demons entered my home and that was when I was hurting the most. They wanted me to kill myself and give up, but something outside of me told me in a dream, “Everything will be alright”, and I believe it. I wake up every morning, and thank my Mama for giving me Life.

Feature Art Photo: “Moonlight and Mystery” by Casi McLean

© Tanisha R. Coleman and Visions Of A Black Herstorian, LLC 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Tanisha R. Coleman and Visions Of A Black Herstorian, LLC with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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