Tuesday, November 24, 2009

An Inconvenient Faith

Atheists often accuse Christians of embracing their faith as a sort of wishful thinking to give psychological comfort in a cold cruel world. I have had debates with a relative (on the Irish side) who claims that religious belief is merely a comfort for those who are afraid to face the void. No. Faith is not comfortable, although it has its moments. I do not believe what I believe because it is a comfort. I believe what I believe because of the overwhelming reality of revealed truth. To deny what has been revealed by God through the Church would be foolish and insane for me. To accept it only because it feels good would not be faith but sentimental drivel. To take up the cross means enduring contradictions. It is a lifelong struggle. Yes, there is love, but it is often unfelt. Yes, there is joy, and overall peace, but joy and peace are often hidden guests. Yes, there is hope of heaven, but sometimes heaven seems far away, even when one stands at the threshold. Faith is challenging, for it demands accountability. To believe in Christ requires all of oneself. To believe is to say with Saint Peter, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. But I believe and am convinced that you are the Christ, the Son of God."

6 comments:

Enbrethiliel said...

+JMJ+

On the other hand, there are some Christians who believe that faith in Jesus means that nothing bad will ever happen to you. A friend and I were just discussing why we have faith, Elena, and we agree that is has nothing to do with any "perks"--whether those which atheists accuse us of having or those other Christians claim is our birthright.

elena maria vidal said...

That's true, E. I have seen a lot of that mentality, people whose faith is weakened when things go wrong because they embraced the delusion that being a follower of Christ means no cross.

elena maria vidal said...

And may I add, may God always keep His hand on me, so that I will not betray Him when tried.

Enbrethiliel said...

+JMJ+

That is my prayer as well!

Julygirl said...

The peace of the believer comes from facing up to oneself before the all seeing, all knowing, yet merciful God. That does not happen overnight, it is a journey, but coming to terms with one's imperfections is liberating. The flip side of this is that one also comes to terms with other's imperfections. No more masks, no more game playing.

Mary333 said...

Great post, Elena, and so true. Faith is not comfortable and often the trials seem endless but I know the Cross is the way. Life didn't get easier when I came back to the Church, but at least I knew that I was not alone in my suffering and that there was a reason for the trials.

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