Belief in God is difficult. I cannot see him.
If a tree falls, but I didn’t hear it, did it fall? If I cannot see God, is he there? How do I know I’m not in the matrix? How do I know I’m not just imagining my world? You say it’s God’s Spirit who is the author of Scripture, but how can that be if it’s humans who did the actual writing? Would I be a Christian if I was born somewhere else? Isn’t religion just an expression of culture? Everyone should just not be a jerk. Everyone should just be nice to others. Period.
Or so the conversation went. I added my own question. “If there are no pictures of the party, did the party happen?” Reality is three concentric circles. Starting with the largest circle and then moving inward, is the cosmos (κόσμος), in the second is community (κοινωνία), and in the third is the individual (ἐγώ). Who shapes reality? That is the Maker, God (θεός).
So what’s real?
Can you feel
We are all living in a time where nothing affects us unless we choose it. Or so we like to think. Why should how I live be motivated by others? The conversation went on; live your life with your choices, beliefs, goals, and I’ll do the same. “Of course there is always overlap, not everything can be separated so distinctly.” I added.
What is it to just be nice? What is it to hate rightly? Religion is at best a group of opinions one is brought up in to soothe the restless uncertainty of life, pain, and dread of death. But is it?
The historian Molly Worthen changed her belief not in fantasy, but in reality. As C. S. Lewis describes, she looked along the beam of light and saw by it instead of looking only at the beam. By the light, in the light, with the light, she saw things differently than before. Reality was not lessened to religious opinion, but grounded, resisting what we push away via our buffered selves.
Like music, a live performance properly performed will always be superior to what has been digitally separated. Like music, relationships are the most true when we cease buffering ourselves from others. Does my daughter have more strength than I with which she moves all around her? I don’t think so. Does she have greater intelec with which her mother and I are impressed to draw near? She is learning to recognize her own appendages, so no. How then does she move us?
There are 2 options.
First, we have evolved to cherish our daughter because of our selfish genes, which led to her existence, and so we are not really moved by her but by our selfish desire to see ourselves live forever. She is only a tool we have allowed to move us; an opinion.
Second, God made us personally for community with each other, and when we see her we hear the tree fall in the forest. We know more deeply than we know mathematics, that this is our daughter who is at the very least precious, and at the most eternal.
When she cries I A) am bothered because I’m living like option number one or B) am moved because this little one holds no property other than her immanence which God has made us to dwell with.
Belief in God is difficult to resist. I experience him everywhere.