Sunday, February 1, 2009

Faith is a Divine Gift

In my recent blog entry Ideas Have Consequences I discussed the fact that in some way the secular world and my Catholic beliefs are separate universes. Where we meet, I see one color they see another. I hear one sound they hear another. Keep in mind I am not a philosopher, nor a theologian, but that I can recognize from where I came and where I am now. In those years that have passed, many words for instance have changed their meanings. Things that most people took for granted as sin and inappropriate are now deemed otherwise. Sin is not like a call in the NFL, that when the coach throws the red flag and the official reviews it and he changes it because he sees it differently. Sin is sin it can't be overturned. That being said when your mindset is that a. there are no absolute truths, b. truth is solely determined by the individual, c. that your intuitive experiences are all that matter. In essence we, the individual are the arbiters of truth. Since this kaleidoscope of truth, his truth, her truth, your truth, my truth can't at all the same time be true, then logically one can deduce there are no truths or better yet no absolutes. When I speak of morality, they speak of moral relativism. When I say that God is the source of all truth and knowledge, and that he has revealed Himself to man throughout the ages, that God became man and that through Him we can attain eternal salvation. They say that's your opinion. You see, we are human beings and we breath, eat, sleep and think like human beings. Human beings have pondered the universe since as far back as we can investigate. They looked at the things that were in their physical world and attributed something about them that can only be described as supernatural. We know this, we also know that there are things that are indisputable truths within the natural law. There is not a society on earth nor an individual who thinks that killing innocent women and children is a good thing. Is that just my opinion? There are many more truths within the natural law than what most people will acknowledge because they are taken for granted. Why do we have laws protecting people for instance? Why should liberty, freedom and justice matter? Is not the person's right to a fair trial, judge by his peers, with the right to redress any evidential matters something that you believe as true or is it just somebody's opinion that this would be a good thing? When I say that God loves you, desires you, wants you to obey his commandments, that is not my opinion. God is universal, omnipotent, is, was and always will be. He choose to reveal Himself to man. God is never wrong, His revelations and truths never contradict the Natural Law. My understanding of Him and belief in him comes from the Divine. Faith is supernatural not confined to human intellect, not anymore than calling the celestial sky a velvet painting or a peaceful sleeping infant a monster from a horror show. When one narrows one's universe they are doing a great injustice to themselves. When one limits truth to the confines of their personal experiences they are trashing God, creating a caricature of Him, denying Him his respect, telling God what he can or cannot do. The flip side of that is acknowledging all that is Truth and Beauty. Faith is such a wondrous and beautiful gift. We come to know God's boundless love, goodness, brilliance, beauty, and mercy. One other thought, I have been blessed with the opportunity to visit the sick and the dying. Those that I minister to at times are going to live but a few more days. At those moments together, we are not distracted by the things that the world considers important, and somehow their perception of the world and my perception doesn't matter. All that does matter is that we are there at that moment doing what really matters, connecting as human beings in comfort and love. In that precious moment I know God is present and that my friend is not just my opinion.

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