My name is David. I’m a non-Jew who practices Messianic Judaism.
What does that mean? It means I’m a worshiper of the God of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob, and a follower of Yeshua, known in most of the English-speaking world as Jesus.
I was raised as a Roman Catholic in southern New England. Good, hard-working family that labored within the burgeoning middle-class of post-World War 2, carving a more-than-respectable life for my sister and myself.
At college, at the age of 19, I had a very personal encounter with God that changed my life forever. One of the results of this was that I shifted out of Catholicism and migrated into Evangelicalism. I became an ardent follower of Jesus Christ. At least, I was trying.
Soon, I married and began raising a family. Our spiritual journey took us through many environments; from Southern Baptist to Fundamentalist, to Reformed, then Charismatic, including FourSquare, Assembly of God and Calvary Chapel.
After 20 years of searching, including a failed attempt at serving as an assistant pastor, I became dissatisfied with my faith. My belief in God never wavered, just my sense of balance and my confidence concerning my understanding of the scriptures and what I was supposed to be doing. I started having questions that I had never asked before. I started having doubts about the dogmas I was told were non-negotiable.
What happened, simply, is that my life experience and observations about the world were no longer lining up with the narrative that I had come to embrace in my faith tradition. What had seemed for so many years to be solid and simple bedrock truths were not providing answers or even the needed perspective that was required for me to make sense of the many questions I found myself wrestling with.
One day, during this period of transition and uncertainty, I discovered a Jewish commentary on the Torah (the books of Moses). A Jewish commentary that, incidentally, was also centered on Yeshua the Messiah. I had studied this part of the Bible faithfully for nearly a decade and yet the insights I was gaining while studying the books from a Jewish perspective were just astounding. Things started making sense to me again. The Bible lost some of its inaccessible mystery and began to take shape in a truly cognitive manner.
Since that time, God has lit a fire within me to help other people like myself to navigate their own spiritual journey towards a deeper and more fulfilling understanding of the scriptures. I have found, over the past five years, that there are many Jews and Christians who are (just like me) not so confident that they have satisfactory answers and are looking for a safe way to explore the Bible and their faith. They are curious about knowing more. Going deeper. That is what The Oasis is all about.
This is a safe zone for both Jews, Christians and others to wrestle with the Bible and with faith in an intellectually stimulating format, without fear of marginalization from their present community.
I currently navigate in the brackish water of the intersection between the Christian and Jewish world. I fellowship as a regular member of Tikvat David Messianic Synagogue, near Atlanta, under my rabbi Ryan Lambert, a close friend. I also am the founder of Oasis Fellowship, small-group and online teaching ministry that I began in 2014 while living in northern Vermont. My family and I also continue to fellowship with and cultivate relationships with many other Christian friends and churches, as well as Jews and Christians from around the country and even the world. Like you, our “network” spreads around the globe, thanks to platforms such as Facebook and WordPress.
I live in the Atlanta, GA area with my wife Michelle and our two youngest children. We have five children in all as well as five grandchildren.
I also own and operate a carpet cleaning business as my chief source of income.
Thanks for reading this. You’ve honored me. My life is not all that it could be but I do my best every day to bring a small measure of healing to the world around me; healing that I’ve needed myself and am still in the process of experiencing.
I suspect you’re probably feeling the same.