Oh Lord, purify me, make me a chalice in which you dwell, offer your sacrifice in me and spread your love through me. Let me shine like gold, adorn me with the jewels of virtue that I may always be open to you. Fill me. Overflow me. Let me be like that most perfect vessel, the Singular Vessel of Devotion, She to whom I cry for protection against the Evil One. I ask this for your glory, for the vessel is nothing without the sustenance inside, the cup nothing unless it is filled. Oh Lord, purify me.

Give me a word, Abba

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Theological Virtues: Faith, pt. 1

I have reflected on faith before, specifically in its relation to reason. I would like to go further into what it means to have faith in someone and specifically God.

Do we have faith in anyone? It seems to many people an impossible task. Who is there to trust? So many of our families are broken by abuse, divorce, etc. Our politicians seem to be self-serving men and women. Even our priests and bishops are often unworthy, as it were, of our trust. Why then should we put our faith in them? Why should we follow them?

No human being is completely trustworthy. I have told lies before. I am not perfect in that regard as I am not perfect in almost every regard. I would say that most people have at least bent the truth before. It's very easy. No consequences. The only person who has never lied is God. Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life. If he is truth, how can he tell a lie? That's like saying that we as humans can somehow leave our soul behind at certain times. Well, we can't, and Christ could not lie.

To have faith is to stand on the assertion that someone is trustworthy and will fulfill his promises. It is not blind. It is an act of the will. You can either choose to stand with Christ or against him. What many call "blind faith" is often merely someone having a very personal reason for understanding that Christ is on his side. Not everyone can articulate every truth. Not everyone is as advanced in the ways of philosophy to do that. If I were to assert that (-3)(-3)=(3)(3) because that is what I was taught without understanding it, would that make it untrue? And so it is with those of us who have faith. We may not have the arguments for it, but we have been taught and we have chosen to trust what our teachers and ultimately Christ tells us. And we stand with him. And that is faith.

For a better understanding of faith, read "Introduction to Christianity" by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger who is now someone important in the Church.

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