I remember the first time someone told me there is no such thing as “God.” I looked them straight in the eyes and found that I had lost the esteem to fight against them.
“Maybe, they’re right,” I thought to myself.
In the dictionary faith is described as the following,
“A Strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.”
However, the definition of faith should more accurately be detailed as “living authentically within a long-standing value system.” There are so many times in my life when I am tempted and pressured to live outside of my faith-based value system.
When we lose our faith, it can feel more like a loss of identity, a loss of security, and a loss of inner-resourcefulness. I think in the midst of a world-wide pandemic it easy to lose our faith. Severe illness, whether it be physical or mental, can thwart our participation in shared activities and trigger a reassessment of the nature of the world. This bereavement can feel like a slow process if we are unable to fully put our trust in God.
Either way, the experience of losing our faith can be extremely painful and ultimately lead to depression, loneliness or anger.
How to Restore our Faith
“Truly I tell you if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done.” (Matthew 21:21)
People Need Nurturing
No matter what the issue is, people need love, compassion and nurturing. And I mean that in all honesty, people need to feel loved. In this time, taking time to love yourself is of utmost importance. People need to be felt, to be seen or understood, we all need some sort of manifestation of love. Finding ways to give yourself or others a sense of nurturing can provide relief. In working with individuals with special disabilities, you learn quickly the desire and need for those students to feel nurtured and in the same vein give.
Everyone Has Their Own Path
In the middle of an economic slowdown, it is hard not to feel restless, agitated, and even irritable. Everything is changing around everyone. But in that light, there are thousands of paths to discover yourself. In the novel, “Teachings of Don Juan,” written by a famed anthropologist about the subtle truths he discovered working with Yaqui Indians, he writes,
“Each path is only one of a million paths. Therefore, you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path. If you feel that you must now follow it, you need not stay with it under any circumstances. Any path is only a path. There is no affront to yourself or others in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you to do. But your decision to keep on the path or leave it must be free of fear and ambition. I warn you: look at every path clearly and deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary. Then ask yourself and ask yourself alone one question. It is this: Does this path have heart? All paths are the same. They lead nowhere. If your path doesn’t have heart, then don’t follow it.”
No matter what you do with your life, it will present you with questions that you won’t always have the answers for; following your heart is the best way out mediocrity. And with that, you’ll face challenges and you’ll combat individuals who don’t understand. In following your heart, you’ll be prompted to restore your faith in yourself, in the world, and in God.
If you hold the concrete belief that there is good in the world and that you will be rewarded for following your heart; you will see the magic of the universe and you will come to know the faith of God.