Sep. 14th, 2017 | Rev. Don Underwood
“I am rethinking faith,” she said. “Can you recommend a church?” The call, made to a friend of mine, came from a young mother who has been a professing agnostic all her adult life.
One of the under-reported stories of modern American culture is the number of people, young and old, who are rethinking faith. While the evidence is still at what I would call the “anecdotal” phase, we are consistently observing it. We encounter young parents who are confronting the reality that being “spiritual but not religious” might not provide enough nurture for their children or themselves. We see aging baby boomers who are becoming passionate about “going deeper” in their relationship with God. We have new church members of all ages who are rethinking their embrace of purely secular lifestyles.
Rethinking faith is not new. In 1633 the Inquisition found Galileo to be “vehemently suspect of heresy” because of his endorsement of Copernican cosmology (the theory that the earth revolves around the sun rather than the other way around). Because this view was so threatening to religious authorities, one of the most brilliant scientists in history was sentenced to house arrest for the rest of his life. Galileo’s findings forced people of faith to rethink their understanding of the Bible. Eventually, augmented by new scientific knowledge, faith flourished rather than withered. That bit of history should remind us of the importance of embracing scientific knowledge rather than living in denial. Religious leaders should be continuously rethinking faith as much as those who are rooted in a secular orientation.
As far as I can tell, rethinking faith always yields a view of God that is bigger than we thought, a God that is more loving and gracious than we have believed, a God that defies the small boxes we sometimes erect around God. Rethinking faith is a way of becoming untethered from the prejudices and small thoughts that have held us back, and inviting us to embrace the beauty and mystery and wonder of a God who spoke creation into existence, hung the moon, bejeweled the skies, and loved you and me in both the worst and best moments of our lives. It enlarges us both mentally and spiritually, and prepares us for the rest of the journey.
Our Disaster Response Team has been called to help our neighbors in the Beaumont area. Please pray for the safety and success of our three teams being deployed:
Team Alpha – 9/23-9/30
Team Bravo – 9/29-10/6
Team Charlie – 10/18-10/21
Interested in joining the DRT team? Contact Tina Wilson for more information!