The Simple Way of Jesus
How I arrived at the beginning
For me, it all started with things the preacher said. I started reading the Bible on my own daily when I was thirteen years old. Pretty quickly – as I listened to the pastor on Sundays – I was squinting and shaking my head. Mom would make me sit next to her, and would nudge me when my head started swinging side to side. Finally, the words, “That ain’t right,” slipped out of my mouth, and Mom swatted me across the back of the head.
That was the beginning. For 47 years, I studied the Bible. When I say studied, I mean I was a regular attendee at group Bible studies and Sunday school. I attended college courses to learn ancient Greek, the stories of the author of Bible books, and what kind of history and culture they lived in.
I wanted more than to just understand. I wanted the truth. I was obsessed with the truth. I wanted to know what Jesus really teaches.
That obsession started at age nine, while walking home from school with my three brothers. As we made our way down the dusty gravel road, we were passing by a field with three huge sows and their litters of piglets. My oldest brother decided we needed some livestock on our 15-acre farm. I protested, but my brothers went scrambling around the field trying to nab a piglet. Honestly, thinking back, they looked like the Keystone Cops in a panicked crowd. One dove over a 500-pound sow and another dove under her. It was crazy.
I looked up and down the road, afraid a car would come along, and they would be caught. Finally, I shouted at them, “You idiots! Pick out one piglet, and everybody chase it into the corner over here!” That’s what they did. We took all the books out of our satchel, and stuffed the pig in. Now, the two younger brothers were too small to carry the pig; so, I was forced into service with the eldest. Once home, we put the pig into an ancient corn bin in the barn because it had no openings for the piglet to escape through.
Then, I ran into the house and went up to my room. The three boys ran in to tell Mom, “Hey, Mom! There’s a pig stuck in the barn!” It took Mom all of a glance to see that the pig – which had no way out – also had no way in.
“How did that pig get in there?”
Well, pretty quick, the three of them were pointing fingers at the absent party. Long story short, I got a beating, and that evening, I was standing in the dark rain outside the farmer’s house with a piglet in my arms. The farmer’s wife came to the door.
“So, what do you have to say to her?” my mother cued.
“My brothers stole your pig,” I blurted out.
Mom gave me a solid swat up side the head.
“And I’m sorry,” I cried out.
I was instructed to put the pig down and wait while she went inside to chat. I stood there crying in the rain, alone in the dark, thinking.
My nine-year-old self said aloud, “You can lie about me. You can blame me. You can beat me. You can smack me. But from now on, I’m always going to tell the truth … no matter what! You can’t make me not tell the truth.”
At age nine, I made the major life decision to always tell the truth no matter what. That resolve became my life theme. I was obsessed with the truth. I always told the truth, and usually I suffered for it.
I found that people didn’t like my questions. And although different churches taught different versions of Jesus, still none of them taught what the Bible really said.
And none of them did miracles. Jesus did miracles. He promised that we would do “greater things than these.” Two thousand years later, I wanted to find out if it was true and, if so, how.
My search for the truth was complemented by an interest in science. At age 15 I watched live as Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. Einstein was a byword around our house. I was thrilled about the vision of a technological future and read science fiction books by the pound. But my interest with science didn't intersect with spirituality until some 40 years later, when I learned about quantum physics.
There were new discoveries in science:
- an energy field was everywhere in the Universe,
- matter is made of energy,
- galaxies billions of light years away gave cosmic perspective,
- life resonates with the vibrational frequency of the earth, and
- DNA can change in a stunningly short time.
Science offered a glimmer of clarity, but there was a lot of confusion about the Bible. So, I went back to study the original ancient Greek words to find out how Jesus used them and what he meant, before everybody else started interpreting them.
I saw clearly that the ideas from modern science were being expressed in ancient terms. Science and ancient scripture were talking about the same fundamental reality.
That realization gave me a deeper understanding of spirituality than ever before. To clarify what I had learned I wrote the book, The Simple Way of Jesus. Reality snapped into focus, including the reality of spirituality.
For the first time in my life, I wasn’t confused. I had a clear picture of how things work, and I knew that all I had to do was practice.
And that’s where I am today: Practicing a powerful spirituality that applies a scientific understanding of reality.
I'm exploring Reality Spirituality on a podcast, in two new books, speaking on the road and, occasionally, still in coaching sessions. I'd love to have you join me on the journey, get your questions answered and your doubts calmed.