Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Paradoxes of Faith

So The Poet gets on my nerves.  But he writes again ...

Faith is not a big thing.  It's a little, hidden thing that most of us are ashamed of.  
I am suspicious of those who parade their faith, who dress it up and put it on a float and ride it down Main Street with fanfare.  Faith is not that kind of thing.
Let's say your Lady had banished you - a misunderstanding: you were drunk, she was offended.  She had every right to expel you from her presence; you never deserved to be there in the first place.  
Let's say you hadn't seen her since the mountain top.  You were trudging through muck and mud and she was somewhere beyond your vision.  When the rain pelts you and the wind chills you and the hunger becomes unbearable; when the gin makes you cry instead of laugh, here's where you find that little imp called faith.
You know somehow she loves you, loves the song you sing; you know that the Playwright has placed her there, though even she, like the Haughty Princess, gets distracted by the wrong things (or annoyed at your presence) and looks away.  And even that turning aside, even the banishment, is a grace - for she knows you cannot yet stand in her presence and sing, not when the clefts and bars won't hold you, not when your music becomes a jumbled mess.
But everyone around you tells you she's not there.  She's a figure of speech, a poetic convention.  She's a fiction you've made up to suit your own stupid longing, a sop to soak up the loneliness of the empty hole.  
Faith is not so much handling snakes or preaching good sermons or showing off your stigmata.  
Faith is that little tiny hidden child that remembers, and knows that it has seen, knows that what it has seen is real - even when it can see no more. "We walk by faith and not by sight" for we have the "substance of things hoped for", we have "the evidence of things not seen"- thus even blind and stumbling, I press on, for to deny her is to deny existence itself.
That stubborn, little, loving hope - that's faith. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your post reminds of a quote from C.S Lewis:

" I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else."

Very profound!


Nancy