Almost 20 years ago my best friend, my cat Nibby died. She wasn't old, so this was a shock to me. She wasn't in the vet's office, being put to sleep. No, she died under my bed, in her favorite spot.
I was going through a depression at that time. Having moved back home from college with not a clue as to what I wanted to be when I grew up. I was going to a church that I didn't like, but had given up finding one that I would. I searched all over for a spirit filled, alive church. I wanted a church where people were not just going through the motions, holding up the status quo, and not daring to let God of the neat and tidy box they had put him in.
But when my cat died, I started to think about my death. I knew where I was going, I just didn't know what to expect. Eternal life in Heaven was something I couldn't even grasp or wrap my mind around. All I knew was it was going to be different, and forever.
At the church I didn't like, they had members trained to be counselors, so I decided to meet with one to talk about this. She was very nice, and had the wisdom and maturity I needed in spiritual matters. I had complained that I didn't like the church we went to. Instead of being offended, she told me about Church of the Open Door.
I had erroneously heard that Open Door was charismatic. I suppose any church that dares to let God out of box seems that way. Having known Charismatic Christians in college and attending their services, I was nervous. For this Scandinavian woman does not get excited in church.
I prayed about it, wondering what to do. In desperation, I told God this was it. If Open Door didn't work out, forget it, I am no longer going to church!
Now I don't recommend making such ultimatums with God, but I think He wanted me to try Open Door and experience what He had in store for me.
Lo and behold! It was not charismatic! Just a Spirit filled, living church, with people who love God and each other, and who allow God out of the box!
I have been there almost 20 years now, and have found healing along the journey of faith. So I do believe that whatever happens to us, God can bring something good out of it, if we let Him.