Monday, November 22, 2010
Why Do You Believe What You Believe?
I was born into a Catholic family; water poured on my tiny, infant forehead in a Sunday baptism ceremony.
I entered first grade at the downtown Catholic school and had my First Holy Communion at the church next door. Outfitted in a white dress, belted at the waist and poofed out below with a crinoline slip; along with white Mary Jane patent leather shoes, lace trimmed ankle socks, and a lace veil, I received the Sacrament with other little girls and boys. I was beginning my life as a Christian.
But then the divorced happened. Dad remained a Catholic; Mom, ultimately, did not. She had custody of my brother and me. We moved to Michigan where our church going routine went awry. Fifth grade was my last year of Catholic school.
However, the seed was planted. I believed in God.
Later in life, I began to believe because of faith rather than what I’d been taught.
* * * *
I woke up one morning, stressed; worried about being able to accomplish the long list of things to do. My first thought: ask God to help me throughout the day.
And then I wondered – What do people do when in need of mental or physical relief? How do people handle a tough time, like a life or death situation involving themselves or loved ones? Where do they find comfort?
And, who do people thank when it all works out?
As a Christian, I have a “thank you Jesus moment,” like the lady on the commercial who won the millions in the Publisher’s Clearing House sweepstakes…well, not e-x-a-c-t-l-y like her.
When blog surfing, and just reading in general, I find info on many celebrations – some that are religious, like Diwali. I Googled it and learned that it is a major holiday celebrated by Hindus.
With all the holidays celebrated around the world, I am reminded of the many different beliefs, and unfortunately, all the conflict surrounding it, which I believe will always exist. Religious wars have been fought since history has been recorded.
Nowadays, people criticize each other with words like: gullible, cult, naïve, stupid, heathen, violent, thief, weird, lost, etc.
I’ve seen bumper stickers with the word “coexist” (written with religious symbols), which is what we have to do, but I see nothing wrong with healthy and respectful debate. Educate yourselves and defend your beliefs, because sometimes in the process, you may help someone, or, you may discover something you’ve been missing that someone else has. When you have peace in your heart, you’ve probably hit the mark.