Just returned from visiting my college roommate, Sheila Rae Morris. When we get together mostly we talk about religion, politics and family. Sheila is a writer, and she shared with me an essay on faith from her most recent (though not yet published) book. Our religious experience as children was very similar; she was raised Southern Baptist and I grew up immersed (literally) in the Church of Christ. Her essay is an honest and poignant description of how she made the pilgrimage away from her Baptist roots to celebrating the truth of who she is and always has been.
Our conversation reminded me of the time in my life when I no longer believed in the notion of "Scripture." Sometime in my early forties I was having a conversation with a neighbor, a fundamentalist Christian who kept quoting the Bible to me. She asked me how I justified my position on some issue when the Bible, to her, clearly disagreed with me. I heard myself reply, "because I do not consider the Bible to be authoritative." Our conversation came to an end, but I knew in that moment that what had once been true for me was no longer.
So many writings and teachings have informed me over the years. Books and teachers have educated me, inspired me, provoked me, challenged me and radically altered my world view, and I am grateful. Yet, I am even more grateful for the day I realized that none of them could, any longer, command me. That realization afforded me one of the most exquisite tastes of freedom I can remember.