“We live in a culture that has, for centuries now, cultivated the idea that the skeptical person is always smarter than one who believes. You can be almost as stupid as a cabbage, as long as you doubt. The fashion of the age has identified mental sharpness with a pose, not with genuine intellectual method and character… Today it is the skeptics who are the social conformists, though because of powerful intellectual propaganda they continue to enjoy thinking of themselves as wildly individualistic and unbearably bright.”1
I really like it when I am perceived as being intelligent. I don’t want to be hoodwinked. I bristle in suspicion at every car salesman, As Seen on TV product, wrinkle cream, and politician. But I believe God.
I am a friend of God, and what kind of friend would I be if at every gesture of grace I jumped immediately to a logical, scientific, humanistic conclusion and dismissed the possibility of God’s hand at work? When reading a story to my child and the simple words jump off the page and speak unexpected truth to my heart, I’d rather believe God may be communicating with me than brush it off as momentary sentimentality. When the winter sky produces a fiery sunset over the mighty Pacific Ocean, I prefer to understand it as a masterpiece painted by God for our pleasure than a result of atmospheric conditions. When I find myself unusually patient with my daughter, or devastatingly overcome with amore for my husband, or exceedingly wise in my professional capacity, I say those are God moments, not coincidence. Each morning when I sit in my still-asleep home stealing the last moments before dawn to be alone in prayer, meditation, and scripture reading, and I am overwhelmed with a sense of peace, how can I not believe? God sprinkles grace upon my life every single day. Just enough to give it flavor and zest, leaving me hungry for more, looking for the next moment of Divine intervention, knowing, believing it will come.
You may think I am among the foolish to choose belief, but to that I say I once was lost but now I am found, once horribly discontent, now completely satisfied, once reeked of bitterness, now full of grace. Choosing belief brought me peace and joy, and I’ll take that any day of the week over a spirit of skepticism that makes me appear “wildly individualistic and unbearably bright.”
Skepticism is easy. Belief is hard. Skepticism is bitter. Belief is sweet. Do kindness to yourself, be a non-conformist and give belief a try.
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Hebrews 11:6
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. James 1:17