Who would ever imagine that the process of reaching the breaking point could work to your good?
Have you ever been to the breaking point before?
It’s not a pretty place.
One of the most important things we can ever do for a child is to live our lives before them so that we pass on the faith. Not religion — the faith. Religion thrives on doctrines, certainties and answers. Faith comes alive when it has walked through questions and doubt and not given up.
This world is a world filled with circumstances that call for questions and doubt — Darfur, Haiti…
How do you reconcile the idea of a loving God with a world that is so broken and incredibly unjust to the most vulnerable? How will children reconcile the teachings about a loving God when they don’t feel loved?
One of the things I struggle with is the degree to which I will allow my own children to witness my personal struggles with questions and doubt. Parents would love to pass “the faith” on to their children neatly wrapped like a gift. But the only way they will wear that gift is if it fits them, speaks to them, reflects something that they want to say about themselves to the world. So, instead of passing on the faith like a gift, we have to learn how to pass on to our children the confidence to ask questions about their experiences, express curiosity about the world, and to be circumspect with those who would offer quick, ready answers that might look good from a distance.
Quick, pat answers won’t stand the test of midnight. And every human being will have midnights. If we are careful, these midnights will teach us how to live in trust when the day breaks. When daybreak comes, we need to be able to “wear” the testimony rightly fit like a glove, naturally and gracefully.
I am grateful for every midnight and every daybreak. At midnight, I remember that the promise of a fresh morning is coming. And when the morning comes, with all of its hope and potential, I remember the One who held my hand when it was darkest.
Remembering those things together give me power to step back from the breaking point, power to take a breath, power to look once again to God who holds us through it all.