Welcome to our blog! This is a place to share ideas, thoughts, concerns and joys of our faith journey. I'll be posting sporadically, but hope you will feel free to comment and join in the discussions.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Those Little Voices of the Night

I'm writing this post at 3:30 am. In the morning.  In the "dark watches of the night." I'm not sick. I'm not sleeping either. This is where I'm most vulnerable. At night. In the dark. Where the worries and problems of the day or even weeks can make me sit in front of the computer and play solitaire until I can't see straight anymore. I often feel this is a failing in my faith--this anxiety--not being able to sleep. If I believed, I tell myself, I wouldn't be worried about paying bills or how my son is doing across the country or even how my daughter is within the same state. Remember that symbolism about the "faith like a mustard seed"? It's in Matthew, Chapter 17, verse 20: He replied, "Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." Yeah, I think. I'm supposed to have that kind of faith. So where is it?

This is where the idea of faith takes hold I think. Because when it seems hardest to believe, when you know you aren't in charge, when you have nothing else to grab onto, faith gives you something intangible. Grappling with questions of why the world is this way, how could people be so insensitive, and where are we headed; we humanly, cannot answer those by ourselves. Of course, God isn't booming out the universal answers either to my most anxious of problems--at least in my experience. And I've listened with my hearing aids up full blast. Honest. But I know God is near. I just know it. I can't prove it, or point my finger at something to look at. The Holy Spirit is with me. If I could just trust that. And that is the crux of the problem at 3:30 am. Trusting that the Holy Spirit is with me, not solving the problems, necessarily. Not erasing the anxiety. But sitting next to me, rubbing my shoulders, lending me strength, if I would stop fighting it. I'm not there yet, that's all. The brain is beating away to the staccato rhythm of this, that and the other thing. And until I believe in the Father's healing touch, and truly trust that the Advocate (Holy Spirit) is with me, I'm bringing up another round of solitaire and waiting for the sleep to kick in.Trying to fix the problems, trying to beat back the worry, and trying to believe in the strength of the seed. It will be another long night.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Optimistic Magic

So apparently, this weekend on TV, on one of the channels, they are running the Harry Potter movies. I am assuming in sequence as they don't really make sense out of order too much. I'm a fan of Harry Potter, both the books and the movies. I've always loved stories with magic and happy endings. Some people tried for a while to say one of two things about the series. Those who didn't like them, well, some of them said they were the work of Satan, drawing people away from the Bible. Then there were the people who felt as though the stories were a metaphor for Jesus, you know, saving the world through love. Me? I thought they were terrific stories without a hidden agenda.

And I guess I liked Ms. Rowling's underlying message. Good is better than evil. Love conquers hate. The good guys, though bloodied and bowed, win in the end. Of course, in the real world we all live in, that is not necessarily so. We've seen bad guys win, haven't we? We've seen good men and women get some pretty raw deals, too. Life is not always fair, like in the movies.

We talked about that sort of, in the adult Sunday school class today. That weighing of good versus bad. And it sort of came to the Harry Potter conclusion, that love wins over all. God's love is above all things. We make crappy choices and complain and whine about life, yet God is right there listening and waiting for us to realize His support and love for us. We don't have to do anything to make Him love us. We actually can't. I mean it's nice when we pet dogs as opposed to kicking them, but God's love requirement is not earned. Because technically, we can never be good enough. He just loves us, period. If there is more optimistic magic than that, I don't know what it would be. I don't even own a wand, but apparently, I don't need one. What a relief!