When it comes to faith, the Grand Canyon feels like a smaller rift than that which separates what I know to be true from the emotional realities I experience every day. One is no less true than the other, but neither do they agree.
In my life, faith has felt a lot more like hauntings than tangible realities. It has seemed more of an unseen and entirely intangible truth. However, a truth none the less. And actually, sometimes the hauntings feel far more real than anything else I feel or even experience firsthand. Sometimes misunderstood, unnerving, inexplicable, and maybe even frightening…yes. On one hand, they’re easier to deny than material things I touch and feel, and yet, harder… because, like hauntings, they never allow me rest. Always gnawing on my insides and in the back of my mind, demanding attention as though constantly whispering (which sometimes sounds like screaming) in my ears.
“Okay, okay…” I say to myself. “What are you trying to say?” and I turn to face the whispers. But as I face them, they stop speaking. “What do you want??” I demand.
Apparently, faith doesn’t respond well to the insolent and angry demands of those it provokes.
And I do suppose that makes sense. Actually, it supports everything I know to be true about faith, but it’s no less frustrating. I’m a foot stompin’, hands on hips, give-me-the-answers-right-this-minute kinda gal. Faith does not work that way. No wonder we are so often at odds.
People have often told me they’re shocked to learn how strong my faith is. “You’re just so….logical” they say, as though that somehow negates the capacity to believe. Yes, I’m logical…and that’s a large reason why I believe the things I do. What I believe makes far more logical and rational sense than any other explanation or theory in existence. It has more scientific support as well. It’s not a difficult leap at all, as long as you have the information of course. If you’re ignorant, or have false information, or have petty emotions standing in the way of rational thought, faith may be more difficult for you. But for me, it is quite simple.
Simple, but not easy. Faith isn’t even easy for those who already believe, so I’d assume it’s downright impossible for those who don’t. It is tested at every turn, pressed in on every side, and it seems as though the universe is intent on taking all faith and pushing a person beyond the breaking point, just to see if it remains. I will not lie and say I’ve never been driven to despair of my faith and of my God. I have…many, many times over. And yet…the dust and ashes of what I’ve believed get pressed together in such a way as to create a whole new substance. A purer substance. A simpler substance. A substance I never had before. A diamond, perhaps.