Why I Believe, Part 1 of Infinity

First, let me say that I have blocked my first real user on Xanga (my other blog with the same content, where I actually get comments). Once someone decides that they get to question whether or not I am a Christian, and to throw out spiritually arrogant attacks, they are nixed. Feel free to read the comments on my last post there to see what I mean. At first I was going to respond, and to say that doubting is not antithetical to faith (and to point out the bitter, pointed examples of doubt and frustration with God in our very own Bible; he even asked me to "read the psalms" to learn about God's love; well, there are several psalms expressing deep despair and lack of hope, and I had to stop myself from rushing to quote them all to validate my point)...but I really would rather not encourage this line of conversation--ie, let's fight and prove the other one wrong, etc. When argument (esp. of such a personal nature) is done between strangers, and not in the context of a relationship of trust and love, very little good can come out of it. I choose out of that.

Now, onto the day's topic. Heather asked me a question on my last entry (Rachel, you asked me something too, which I will get to in a later post...I need to think about it more), and I'd like to offer a very meager, unsatisfying, response-in-progress to why I believe God is active in the world. She asked:

Um, can I ask, why? What were your reasons for believing God to be 'in action'? I kept waiting for you to write about it in the post, but then realized this was more just being thankful for the opportunity, but I'm curious about the specifics.

Thanks for the question, it made me think further. Unfortunately, my answer will probably be unsatisfactory (to you, and probably to me also). I feel like it's one of those questions like, "Why do you love your husband?" I mean, you could give some reasons...but at the end of the day, it's not easily quantifiable and able to be articulated. That said, I will throw a few things out there.

1) Structural examples of ways people are moved by God to love others in the world. I look around the world, especially poorer countries, and notice that a lot (I would say the vast majority, but I don't have actual statistics) of the hospitals, schools for women, etc. were started by churches or missionaries or Christian groups. Say what you will about the failings of Christians (and I would agree with them), there is no denying the ways hundreds of thousands of people have been moved to work for justice and to care for others around the world. In an age of such selfishness, I do find this to be miraculous, and the work of God.
2) Same as number 1, but on a personal/relational level. I am amazed sometimes at the love I see in others, and in myself. When I see this love, I see God's work.
3) My own experiences relating to God. You know, like feeling God's presence, hearing God say something, feeling God softening my heart and transforming me, that kind of stuff.
4) Faith. This is the one that plays a big part, and is probably the least satisfying of an answer. Since I don't feel like I conjure it up, it's just something that's there (at least most of the time).

Anyway, that's as good an answer as I can come up with right now. I have a feeling this question will be asked and reanswered very many more times throughout my life.

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