There was a certain comfort in anonymity. In being unknown. There’s no pressure in that. I had always been drawn to a particular verse among the very many in the New Testament story of Jesus.
“Teacher,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.”Mark 9:38
Basically, an ‘outsider’ is running the same routine as Jesus’ crew, and the apostles naturally want to snuff out the competition. Jesus (being Jesus) tells them to chill, and that if they do the things they do then they’re on the same team.
Putting together this latest writing series has shown me (in case I wasn’t already painfully aware) I am an outsider. I am an outsider in my art and writing, and I am an outsider in my community. This gives me a different perspective on things, as does everyone’s lived experience.
In terms of faith, I can either accept that experience as God-given – as in I was meant to suffer in certain parts of my life and excel in others – or that life is just a collection of random occurrences. I tend to side with the first option. That doesn’t mean I special. I am, if anything “Saint No Name” – minus the Saint title. A nothing.
We all have that same privilege of being given a particular life to live. We choose (some) of the ways we want to live it. The rest is up to the world around us, and if we believe that God is all things, then all of that world comes from God. The good and the bad.
I spent a lot of time trying to reconcile my faith with the reality of suffering that this creation brings. Is suffering something that God uses to highlight those moments of joy? Is it something used to refine us?
I will be writing in this series about some events in my life that have never completely made sense to me, but confirmed to me the existence of ‘something more’. I don’t know what you call it – God, Karma, the Holy Spirit – I just care about sharing some of my testimony with people who genuinely want to know what else there is out there.
This series is, though, not a religious one, and I use titles and descriptions that are comfortable to me from my western, Christian upbringing. This story though, is about finding a force outside of that cultural construct.
A force that led me on a journey filled with doubt, despair, love and triumph.
I hope you will join me as I share some of my journeys here on I Wear White. Including my work with the prophetic and my experiences within Australia as someone with bipolar affective disorder.
Saint No Name