Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I'm Solidifying

I've noticed something rather scary that's been happening to me lately. In one sense it elates me, and in another, it scares me to death.

I feel like I'm beginning to solidify.

When I was a lot younger, I was much more impressionable. I mean, if anyone said something it would stick with me quickly. It would affect me seriously. Think about the word "impressionable" for a moment. What is an impression? It is like a handprint or a footprint. When you place your foot on the soft sand of the beach, you leave a mark of your foot there. The sand takes the shape of your foot.

As an impressionable youth, I was the same way. It was easy to shape me. I was like soft sand, and anything anyone said or did left an imprint on me.

I have done a lot of online debating, mostly on the subject of creation/evolution. Actually at one point when I was thirteen I debated for almost a straight week, spending every spare second online fighting for my beliefs.

I became very angry and confused. I didn't know what to think because so many atheists assaulted me all week long. I didn't know what to think. I didn't know if what I was taught when I was young (and even more impressionable!) was right.

I learned in debates this year that it doesn't matter which side sounds more impressive or has more evidence, the other side can still be right. There can usually be evidence for any idea if you look around hard enough. I think it's a combination of learning truths like this and just growing up that is causing me to solidify.

So in a way it's a good thing. I'm starting to be able to hold on to my beliefs more strongly. I debated atheists again over the past few weeks. I've been able to hold up a lot better. I guess I also have more knowledge in addition to more faith.

But in another way, I'm afraid of solidifying. I've heard that the teen years are the end of the impressionable years. When you're 16, 17, 18, you're becoming the person you're going to be for the rest of your life.

I'm scared that a lot of artifacts that I don't want in that person will solidify with the rest of me. What if I lose the most impressionable time of my life, the time when I'm shaping and molding myself and letting God shape and mold me into the man He wants me to be? What if I solidify before I'm ready, and it's no longer so easy to change?

I guess I should be comforted. Because with God, all things are possible. But I should also be careful of who I am now and who I am becoming.

So should you.

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