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Author Topic: Why did you choose the Christian Orthodox faith  (Read 329 times) Average Rating: 0
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Skydive
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« on: March 23, 2014, 12:37:33 PM »

For those of you who weren't cradle Orthodox and are converts to Orthodoxy : Why did you choose the Orthodox faith? I have pondered upon the idea of not being a cradle Orthodox and I don't think I would choose the Christian Orthodox faith if I would have not been a cradle Orthodox.
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« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2014, 12:51:25 PM »

I didn't choose it. It chose me. Also, it is biblical, historically sound etc. but those are rationalizations of a very irrational process. I didn't seem to be able to get rid of idea of Orthodoxy whether I wanted or not.
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« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2014, 12:59:03 PM »

What's the question? Why Christianity? Or why Orthodoxy?
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« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2014, 01:02:20 PM »

I didn't choose it. It chose me. Also, it is biblical, historically sound etc. but those are rationalizations of a very irrational process. I didn't seem to be able to get rid of idea of Orthodoxy whether I wanted or not.

What do you mean?

And what do you mean it chose you?
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« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2014, 01:10:29 PM »

I can't pinpoint anything exact or explicit. That's just how I felt before my Chrismation.
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« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2014, 01:28:22 PM »

I Feared organized Religion because of so many different beliefs about Christ, I believed in God already, and I knew inside, that only one Church could be Teaching correctly the fullness of the Truth, that Christ brought to the Apostles. Christ built his Church, not his Churches. that's how I see it anyway.

in 2007 something made me Ask God, (in my first ever Prayer to him) if the Church existed, that still taught correctly to this day, what he brought to the Apostles, I asked him to please guide me to it any way he can.
What happened next, I've only shared with my priest, until now, (still not sure if it's the right thing to do, I don't want people to get the wrong impression) the instant I finished Praying, one word entered my mind, Orthodox, My first reaction was, Orthodox?!?! what's that? (I had never heard of Orthodox Christianity, my western taught mind associated the RC with ancient Christianity) I went to my pc and Googled Orthodox, the first thing my eyes saw on the page was the words, Orthodox Christianity, again, I was like, Orthodox Christianity? what's that? the first link I clicked on was this site,  http://orthodoxinfo.com/
after that I spent a lot of time reading about and learning all I could about the history of the Church.

I didn't even realize the significance of my initial prayer, really, until last year. I Truly have no doubt that God is Real. and it has nothing to do with my prayer being answered, when I Prayed that day, I was Praying to someone I knew existed, not someone I HOPED existed. The Lord Said, ask, and you shall receive. The Lord does not lie.
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« Reply #6 on: March 23, 2014, 01:32:00 PM »

i'm going to quote myself from here:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,55412.msg1043557.html#msg1043557

i consciously chose the orthodox church because i found people there who were able, through their spiritual growth, to live what they preached.
there, i learnt to accept God's will and to give thanks to him in every situation, for every condition and about all things (from the coptic 'thanksgiving prayer')
there, i learnt how to love my enemy and pray for him (this was a very hard lesson).

people i didn't see for a long time spontaneously remark on how calm and happy i seem (including the muslim colleague who first recommended i visit his best friend's church...) yet, other people i know have made even more progress.
(e.g. my antiochian orthodox friend who is like an angel and only 1 or 2 years older in the orthodox Christian faith)

so if you make God your first priority, then He will have the glory and fill your life with His beauty.
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« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2014, 01:43:04 PM »

Orthodoxy because I cannot accept Martin Luther's Sola Scriptura and Sola Fide anymore. The Scriptures, and the early Church didn't teach it. Martin Luther didn't even believe in it himself. He made up Sola Fide from his opinions, not from Scripture. (c.f., James 2:24)

Not Catholicism because I just cannot accept the doctrines Rome teaches. I don't find them to be Apostolic, but medieval.

Not Nestorianism (Assyrian Church of the East) because I know Mary was called Theotokos before the Council of Ephesus.

If you are wondering why Christianity, it's because the other Abrahamic Faiths; in the case of Islam, don't make sense logically to me; or in the case of Judaism, I have no incentive to become Jewish. Buddhism is the only faith I would become if not Orthodox. But I have no reason to; where Christ destroyed death and suffering, Buddhism is still trying to find out how to.

I also know, for a fact, that the Orthodox Church is the Church of the New Testament, and of the Ecumenical Councils.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2014, 01:47:23 PM by xOrthodox4Christx » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2014, 01:47:24 PM »

i'm going to quote myself from here:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,55412.msg1043557.html#msg1043557

i consciously chose the orthodox church because i found people there who were able, through their spiritual growth, to live what they preached.
there, i learnt to accept God's will and to give thanks to him in every situation, for every condition and about all things (from the coptic 'thanksgiving prayer')
there, i learnt how to love my enemy and pray for him (this was a very hard lesson).

people i didn't see for a long time spontaneously remark on how calm and happy i seem (including the muslim colleague who first recommended i visit his best friend's church...) yet, other people i know have made even more progress.
(e.g. my antiochian orthodox friend who is like an angel and only 1 or 2 years older in the orthodox Christian faith)

so if you make God your first priority, then He will have the glory and fill your life with His beauty.

So what made you so calm and peaceful? What is the recipe? I am like a volcano.
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« Reply #9 on: March 23, 2014, 02:55:44 PM »

So what made you so calm and peaceful? What is the recipe? I am like a volcano.

"Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!

"Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." -Phil. 4:4-7 (NKJV)

If I may, I've found in my own life that peace comes from drawing close to Lord as much as possible. By truly loving Him, seeking Him, having a relationship with Him. By giving Him your troubles and asking for more of Him, to be made more like Him and delivered from our sins. To keep asking, keep seeking and keep knocking, and He will bring us there in time, even if we fall and fail 1,001 times.

I'm coming to "choose" Orthodoxy for similar reasons as those already listed by others. I do feel called into it by God. I can see its historicity. But more personally, I'm at a place now in my spiritual life where I can benefit and learn from the Liturgy, submission to the Church and the Holy Tradition. I could not have appreciated these things until I got to where I am now in my journey, where I know God and love and trust Him, and can say the same about His scripture. It is now that I can accept and benefit from what Orthodoxy can teach me.

Perhaps others can come at it from a different trajectory and come to know and love God first through the Liturgy and Tradition, and that's great, but that has not been my experience.

The Christian faith is not a religion of rules and rites. If we treat it that way we've missed the point. It's about a restorative, reconciled relationship with our Creator through Jesus Christ. That is first, and everything else should serve to better fulfill that purpose. Orthodoxy, for me now, continues to nourish that experience for me. To love God, love others, love His Holy Scripture, and now, for me, to love His Church and the Holy Traditions.

These are, as always, my personal thoughts and experiences. Smiley  Here's a good article I found elsewhere on this forum that may be tangentially related:

http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2014/03/religious-people-are-dangerous-god.html?m=1
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« Reply #10 on: March 23, 2014, 05:25:31 PM »

thanks!
that's basically it.
keep a strong spiritual life with regular prayer and discipline and submit to your leaders.
learn of God's love and experience it.
may God bring you peace
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« Reply #11 on: March 23, 2014, 05:36:10 PM »

thanks!
that's basically it.
keep a strong spiritual life with regular prayer and discipline and submit to your leaders.
learn of God's love and experience it.
may God bring you peace
 Smiley

what do you mean by discipline?

how often do u commune/confess?
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« Reply #12 on: March 23, 2014, 06:21:47 PM »

You can find past posts here where I gave the usual rationalizations about history and authority, but the truth is I chose Orthodoxy because it fit. Because I fit in it. Because I found not one but two good churches full of good people who — by their actions and non-actions — made me feel like I wasn’t an alien. Because it was a living tradition that was faithful to its tradition and hadn’t yet shaken off all of the weird ossification that keeps it faithful. Because it was Orthodox, but because true orthodoxy is a wide orthodoxy rather than a wooden adherence to confessional lists. Because I found Christ in a cup, and — for the first time in years — in my heart.

So the truth is, while everyone has their doctrinal and historical reasons for converting and remaining, mine are much more flawed in that they’re rooted in my personal experience. I don’t give a damn about 1054 or sola whatever at this point. I am Orthodox because it is where I find Christ, and where Christ — like the father in the parable — ran to find me.
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« Reply #13 on: March 23, 2014, 06:30:11 PM »

e.g. getting up to pray instead of hitting the 'snooze' button on your alarm for another 15mins rest.
i'm quite bad at this; usually i hit snooze!

giving your journeys an extra 10 - 15 mins so you have time to smile at a stranger or give way to someone while driving.
(o.k. i'm actually usually late but i aim for this!)

thanking God all the time.
it starts as a prayer you say and hope to mean and later becomes a prayer you say and mean.
e.g. this one in the coptic church:

from this website: http://www.agpeya.org (usually we say it, not chant it when we are at home)-
(i have changed one part of the wording so it makes more sense in english, using a better translation i have heard)

Let us give thanks to the beneficent and merciful God, the Father of our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ, for He has covered us, helped us, guarded us, accepted us unto Him, spared us, supported us, and brought us to this hour. Let us also ask Him, the Lord our God, the Almighty, to guard us in all peace this holy day and all the days of our life.

O Master, Lord, God the Almighty, the Father of our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ, we thank You for every situation, for all things, and in every condition, for You have covered us, helped us, guarded us, accepted us unto You, spared us, supported us, and brought us to this hour.

Therefore, we ask and entreat Your goodness, O Lover of mankind, to grant us to complete this holy day, and all the days of our life, in all peace with Your fear. All envy, all temptation, all the work of Satan, the counsel of wicked men, and the rising up of enemies, hidden and manifest, take them away from us, and from all Your people, and from this holy place that is Yours.

But those things which are good and profitable do provide for us; for it is You Who have given us the authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and upon all the power of the enemy.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, by the grace, compassion and love of mankind, of Your Only-Begotten Son, our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ, through Whom the glory, the honor, the dominion, and the adoration are due unto You, with Him, and the Holy Spirit, the Life-Giver, Who is of one essence with You, now and at all times, and unto the ages of all ages. Amen.

basically it's about doing everything to keep close to God. then we are more aware of God's love and compassion.

about confession; i can't tell you too much (it's personal) but many people confess about once a month; less if they don't live close to their confession father. more if they are going through a difficult time, life personal or work stress.
some people have to move several times with work, and they don't always change their confession father when they change church. none of the priests i have met had any problem with this.

about 90% of the coptic orthodox Christians i have met (from the uk copts) take Holy Communion every week (except women menstruating).
if you look at the early history of all the orthodox churches; chalcedonian and non chalcedonian; they all had frequent Holy Communion, and in many churches it then became less frequent; especially (it seems to me) in the chalcedonian churches. although the ethiopians and eritreans also don't commune as frequently as people in the coptic church.

the most peaceful person i ever met was a priest who said 'thank God, thank God' very quietly all the time he was not actually talking or sleeping. he had incurable cancer and was only in his '50s.
i think there was a link between his continual state of thankfulness and his deep peace.
he radiated peace. everyone in the church said they didn't meet anyone like him before.
if i live another 200 years, i hope to reach this spiritual state!
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« Reply #14 on: March 24, 2014, 10:28:26 AM »

You can find past posts here where I gave the usual rationalizations about history and authority, but the truth is I chose Orthodoxy because it fit. Because I fit in it. Because I found not one but two good churches full of good people who — by their actions and non-actions — made me feel like I wasn’t an alien. Because it was a living tradition that was faithful to its tradition and hadn’t yet shaken off all of the weird ossification that keeps it faithful. Because it was Orthodox, but because true orthodoxy is a wide orthodoxy rather than a wooden adherence to confessional lists. Because I found Christ in a cup, and — for the first time in years — in my heart.

So the truth is, while everyone has their doctrinal and historical reasons for converting and remaining, mine are much more flawed in that they’re rooted in my personal experience. I don’t give a damn about 1054 or sola whatever at this point. I am Orthodox because it is where I find Christ, and where Christ — like the father in the parable — ran to find me.



This!

But also because I met there people who radiated goodness and peace - and I wanted to be like that, more than anything else. Orthodoxy has a plan. I can follow a plan, more or less. Mostly less.
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« Reply #15 on: March 24, 2014, 11:50:24 AM »

So what made you so calm and peaceful? What is the recipe? I am like a volcano.

Age! 

Love, elephant
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« Reply #16 on: March 25, 2014, 08:56:23 AM »

So what made you so calm and peaceful? What is the recipe? I am like a volcano.

Age! 

Love, elephant

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1TcDHrkQYg
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Robert Green Ingersoll
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