a meditation on faith

I composed and offered this for gathered worship @ Belair Uniting this morning, inspired by stories from Hebrews chapter 11 and Luke chapter 12.

What is faith?

it’s a little bit hope
a little bit trust
a little bit experience – experience of love
                                                of life
                                                of the Story
                                                of the Sacred Mystery

it’s a little bit reaching beyond ourselves
a little bit resting deep within ourselves

it’s a bit belief
a bit knowledge
a bit ideas
a bit feelings
part tradition
part practice
part attitude
part a way of living

it is mine
it is ours
it is work
it is gift

faith is a seed that is planted
that we feed and water
that grows
and needs pruning
and care
and love

the writer of the letter to the Hebrews says that faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things unseen

trust and hope
belief and experience

faith is a bit like lighting the lamps and waiting expectantly for God to arrive; waiting for an encounter with the Sacred Mystery who we rarely see clearly, often catch glimpses of through stories and prayer, song and love and creation.

faith is a bit like a lamp or a candle – not much use until it is lit, not much use hidden under the table.
sometimes ours is the only light, and sometimes we join a host of candles not only filling the darkness with light, but warming us with their combined strength

sometimes the candle burns brightly, sometimes it flickers in the wind
but we light it
we don’t know when we will encounter God, but we hope and we trust that we will
for a cloud of witnesses has gone before us and tells us that God is here
for Jesus has come among us, Wisdom personified in healing and a generous welcome of all
for the Spirit moves within us, and Creation breathes around us, sure signs of the Sacred, the Holy, the Source of life and love

faith is lighting a candle in the darkness, alone or together, and waiting


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