Monday, November 14, 2011

Coincidence or God-incidence

I have always been in awe of my friend Janet's absolute faith in God. She puts all her trust in him. When she went off to be a missionary in the Congo she gave away her car. She had absolute faith that if she needed a car in the future God would provide. When she returned from Congo she found she did need a car. What she did not know was that a friend of hers was thinking of selling his car on Jersey Insight but when he slept on it, he woke feeling a strong urge that he must give his car away so he phoned Janet and gave her his car. 

I was telling my two children this story yesterday as we were walking back from the COOP. We have a Christmas Fayre at church on December 3rd 2011 and I was explaining how important it is not to cling on to possessions and give them more worth than they deserve. I then told them Janet's story. Just as I finished Maia said "Look Mum, a pound note". She immediately said her brother could have half (so she gave freely). A few steps later Max said "Another one!". I think they really believed those notes had come from God. When we got home, Maia packed up boxes of toys for the Christmas Fayre! Christian friends call this a "God-incidence". I find the word clunky and contrived. I know what they are saying. I've written a previous post on this sometime ago. Jung calls it "acausal synchronicity". Whatever it is labelled, it was a special moment.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

My feeble faith

I haven't posted for a while. I've stagnated for the past few months and I've had nothing to say. I still attend St. Mark's and love it. It is like a family...and all that a family entails. Perhaps I was becoming complacent in where I was at. I had a useful nudge a couple of weeks ago. I was asked if I would consider helping with the Sunday School. My initial reaction shocked me. The instant thought that formed in my mind was "I'm not prepared to indoctrinate children". Suddenly I realise that my faith, not even the size of a mustard seed was more feeble than I knew.

I'm prepared for others to indoctrinate my children in Sunday School? But I'm not prepared to take the responsibility myself - hmmm - well that tell you more than I really want you to know about me but in the spirit of openness on this faith journey I feel compelled to share.

Early on at St. Mark's I was collared by a faithful Christian. She said in an aggressive tone "Why do you bother bring your children to church if you don't believe?" The answer is simple. I am confused and I don't know. I feel I must give them the opportunity to make their own mind up about it all. Whether that will work in practice, I don't know.

My daughter seems to share my ambiguity but is currently probably more "faithful" than me in that she willingly identifies herself as a Christian.

My son seems to share his father's firm atheist beliefs and just says "I hate church".

I can only respond on a non-intellectual level. Whether the specifics in the bible are true or not, metaphorical or literal - I KNOW that our life as a family is significantly improved, since going to St. Mark's. I feel enriched and nourished by the friendship, the community and most importantly that thing I struggle to understand or define....the holy spirit.

So far, the atheist world has yet to provide anything that comes close to the church in what it offers. Somehow a bacon roll & the Sunday papers, whilst having a certain instant gratification pleasingness about them, don't really cut it when compared to the fullness and what is on offer at church.