I have often heard religious people talking about their faith, as in ‘My faith is strong’ . . . or ‘Keep your faith’.
What is this mysterious ‘faith’?
If we analyse what is happening when people talk about faith, it is like listening in on a conversation between two adults who still believe in Father Christmas.
“Do you think Father Christmas will bring you that iPhone you prayed for?”
“I don’t know, I’ve been a bit naughty this year.”
“Well if you prey hard enough, surely He will hear you.”
“Yes, but I sometimes wish He would reply, or least send me an sms - preferably over a new iPhone.”
“Put some cheese and beer next to the chimney. He loves that!”
“I did that last year, but the dog ate the cheese and drank the beer. ”
“Ah, that is why you didn’t get that surfboard you wanted . . .”
“Yip. And did you get that new bicycle you prayed for?
“Naah. I think I was on His naughty list as well.”
“Mmmm . . . we both just need to have a bit more faith.”
“Hey, did you hear about Candice and Dave?”
“They still believe in the tooth fairy.”
In a nutshell: faith, like Santa, is usually introduced to you by your parents; faith is generally prevalent in children and uneducated adults; faith demands some sort of sacrifice – perhaps a beer or even your soul; faith rewards the faithful and punishes the naughty; faith NEVER, EVER requires proof – proof is the enemy; faith never makes any sense –at all.
Faith! It’s a beautiful thing.