It doesn’t seem to make sense, faith. It involves the abject denial, at times, of the ‘seen’ reality but in a way that’s entirely healthy (assuming it’s ‘good faith’). Denial, ordinarily, is something to avoid--it can only normally hamper us in the face of harmful influences that prove abusive, for instance. But faith uses the technique of denial to courageously go on past the inevitable lies given us in this world, onto the true revelation.
Faith is the ability to cast into the question the things we think we know, in favour of open consideration of matters, in search of truth. It’s patience in a hostile environment. It belongs to a chief virtue, trust.
Trust combines faith with courage, honesty, love, kindness, patience, forgiveness, grace, gratitude, acceptance, detachment, openness, perseverance and hope. These are qualities foreign to the world, for the world most often cannot understand or explain them; and when it can it frames them as part of a super-special sales technique, bringing in unsuspecting punters on the back of veiled but plain spiritual truth.
Faith is the answer to being effective in an overly neurotic world. With faith we can be a friend to all without encumbrance. We go into all situations and faith precludes none, but it works cooperatively with prudence to protect, and provide for, our safety and wellbeing. Faith doesn’t look the gift horse in the mouth, but accepts what comes for what it is.
Faith chooses to see the best in most things; it opts for the potential and possibilities, withholding judgment, rather than acting prematurely on only what is seen. It takes the witnessed event into account, sure, but it doesn’t leave it there. It patiently waits beyond reason, for no one can tell why faith doesn’t act predictably--but like creativity (its close cousin) faith can be justified sufficiently through 20/20 hindsight. It just makes sense when looking back and in this way it’s inspirational--it’s the stuff of most current-affairs feel-good stories.
Faith understands that the true reality is beyond the ‘seen’ environment. It somehow understands all realms. It keeps its eyes and ears well open and doesn’t fall for ignorance or arrogance.
Faith, finally, is responsible for receiving and accepting the life-giving message of grace. It hears, it considers, it weighs, and it decides… it goes with commitment onto the final revelation, denying the foolish calls of those non-trusting entities warning of the traps of faith--a.k.a. the lies of the Devil--that never ever appear or come to fruition.
Faith holds sway in the depths of torment and is the difference, ultimately, between spiritual life and death. She, alone, is the prime objective.
Copyright © 2009, S. J. Wickham. All Rights Reserved.