Tuesday, June 13, 2006

The Road is Difficult

I suggested that it was probably time to consult with our pastor, both so he would know what was on my mind and could determine what he thought it would mean for my ministry and presence at our church, and so we could get some guidance on our situation with each other. I figured my wife would appreciate having someone on her side and might be more willing to discuss issues than in a situation where she felt like she was alone. I was also willing to take whatever advice we could get about working through this kind of difference, since we’d never had to deal with anything similar in our relationship. Opening up to him was a big step for me, because although I had considered conversion before to differing degrees, until this point I had never talked to anyone in my Evangelical sphere, other than my wife. I didn’t want to introduce the problem by phone or e-mail if it could be avoided, so I set up a brief meeting with him to explain the situation and give him some time to think about what we should do next. He agreed that the three of us should meet and advised that we start from what we had in common, which was still quite a bit.

Our pastor also mentioned that two visits wasn’t much to go by. I’m not sure what he meant by that, but I took it to mean that if I was serious, I ought to be visiting Orthodox services more often. Before the three of us could meet together I got another opportunity when my Orthodox acquaintance from school invited me to join him for a Good Friday service. It was a wonderful experience—still no epiphany, but this was my first time in a real Orthodox church building, which made a significant difference in the effect. The music also had a somewhat more Eastern flavor than what I’d heard before, and there were no rows of chairs to obstruct movement. I had thought before that I would prefer these elements, and I was glad to find that I in fact did.

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