Finding the Narrow Path: Patterns, Faith and Searching
By: Lin Wilder
Publisher: Wilder Books
Publication Date: August 2016
Reviewed by: Anita Lock
Date: November 13, 2017
Author Lin Wilder shares an engaging spiritual conversion story in her newest read.
“This is a story about how and why I lost faith in God.”
Obviously, the abovementioned quote only tells half of Lin Wilder’s story since she eventually returns to her faith. Answering the “why” to Lin’s reasoning for writing her spiritual journey did not reflect a matter of intention, but the fulfillment of a promise to a dear friend who believed Lin to have a powerful testimony. Lin’s friend states it succinctly: “Others need to read what happened and how this happened. I know that many will be touched, inspired by your journey.”
It all begins at the spunky age of twenty-one when Lin comes to the conclusion that she is void of all religious connections—no longer believing in Jesus, religion, and one “who could no longer call herself a Christian.” It is at this point when she encounters a life-altering experience as she pours out her heart to a complete stranger, a Freshman English teacher, who not only takes pity on her but seems to understand her pain. What amazes her is his intuitiveness. Amid a dark moment in her life, she senses a ray of hope with his near-prophetic utterance that “one day, you will have a faith that is yours...”
Little does Lin know that she will go through various trials before the abovementioned prophecy is fulfilled. Relationship break ups, including a marriage that goes sour, an abortion, and trying job situations, to name a few. In the midst of painful situations while searching for inner direction, Lin witnesses a brilliant light—a sign of the Holy Spirit’s presence—three different yet significant times in her life.
Lin reveals the side of her life that, in all intents and purposes, is not flattering and downright embarrassing, especially since she’s had such high-ranking positions in the medical industry. It is during these very vulnerable moments that she slowly delves into introspection. Her journey eventually leads her not only to the man who she eventually marries, but also in the direction of Catholicism and to the realization that she can have a friendship with Jesus.
While Wilder loves to intellectualize concepts and abstractions, and her account is peppered with philosophical authors and book titles, she writes for the common person. Her journey may be unique, but not the revelation knowledge that it garners. The profound spiritual revelations speak to all, regardless of spiritual background. While not all will agree with her stance on various issues, Wilder humbly admits that aside of her educational and professional background, there is nothing extraordinary about her life. "I am an ordinary woman who has lived an ordinary life. Although I have worked hard, many people work harder, although I am educated, there are millions far better educated than I will ever be."
Wilder succinctly describes the real reason for relaying her account: “In hopes of easing another’s decision to return or turn for the first time to God and to Church. To find comfort and consolation in faith, religion and church whether it be Roman Catholic, Anglican, Judaism or any of the other traditions that point us toward God the Father.”
Quill says: A thought-provoking read, Finding the Narrow Path provides readers with plenty to ruminate on.