Not A Doubt In My MindWhen I was 16, I spent 3 days and 2 nights alone in the woods at the end of an outdoor semester program. I was in a beautiful spot on top of a rocky hill overlooking a lake and the mountain range that towers above my hometown. There could have been bears, mountain lions, or, more frightening, strange people approaching my tent. It snowed on me. It rained on me. I found strength and peace. I return to that spot, now about 10 minutes away from where I live, when I need to find that strength. It has been a place of power for me ever since. This story is about the most profound experience I ever had there, one reason I have no doubts about the existence of God.
I was 20. I had returned home from college lost and defeated, for reasons I won't go into here. I was afraid I would never find my place. What did this look like? Well, I was watching Jerry Springer in my sweatpants a lot more often than I care to admit. One day when I just couldn't stand to be in my own skin for another minute, I got in my car and drove to the overlook nearest my spot. I hiked down to the boulder where I sat those three days, journal in hand. I didn't know what else to do, I just knew that something had to give. I got down on my knees and cried for a few minutes. Then I asked the question that came to me: why am I fighting with everything?
From outside or inside myself (either way, I know it was not me), I heard a voice say, "You're fighting with yourself."
"How do I stop?"
At that moment, everything became clear, the peace and strength returned, when a few moments before I had been lost and desperate. That was the only answer I needed. I returned to my life. I found a path. Everything fell into place. I found a place to volunteer, was offered a job and a scholarship, finished college. I look back on that moment as a turning point in my life. It was the moment when I realized that it is not about me and that I am part of something much greater than myself. Those few words that came to me had a profound impact, and simple as they may be, I couldn't have come up with them on my own. Not from where I was standing. God, Supreme Being, Higher Power, Spirit, Allah, and any and all of the names we use to describe what none of us can describe, I believe. For sure.