Sunday, July 13, 2014

Where Does Faith Come From?

Father Don wrote a piece last week about Thomas the apostle - the famous "Doubting Thomas," and how he and others have bought about the faith that we carry with us in our lives.  Fr. Don writes:

Thomas and many others have contributed to our faith: parents, obviously, friends, teachers, pastors, the Gospel writers, other authors, even critics of faith. Thomas may have believed, as Jesus says, "because you saw me." But most of the rest of us have not seen but have learned to believe because of the words and examples of others. Our faith is part of a broad and long connection to the faith of many others. Faith illustrates something which is true of so much else in life: we are what we are, we have our belief, our hopes and trust in God because of and through others. How much, too, we depend upon the support and example of each other. We have not seen, we have not touched the Lord but, impressed by others, we have believed.

As usual, Father Don is as insightful as he is spot-on.  But I'd like to take it a step further.  As our faith has been founded as described above, it has also been nurtured by those events in our lives in which God has revealed Himself to us.  While basically none us is privy to the type of revelation enjoyed by Thomas where the resurrected Christ asked Thomas to put his finger into the Savior's wounds, we still are afforded and blessed with glimpses from God that He is omnipresent, and that He loves us.  

Oh, sure, there are many days in which we don't see anything like that.  In our depths all of us have felt forsaken, alone, abandoned, faithless, and dare I say, doubting.  But even in those periods, He's there if we can just pull ourselves out and see.  

No, these revelations are usually not overt.  But they are there, and in too great of a quantity for us to ignore.  And for those of us with a foundation of faith provided by the others of whom Fr. Don wrote, these revelations help solidify that foundation, and reinforce that our faith is indeed justified.

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