By Robert Halsey Pine
“Now faith is the assurance of things not seen. Indeed, by faith our ancestors received approval. By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was made from things that are not visible.” (Hebrews 11:1-12 NRSV).
Faith is our confidence in our expectations. These words from St. Paul also remind us of the Gospel of John, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (1:1 NRSV).” John is saying that Jesus, the Son of God, is the Word and is in fact God come to life. Because Jesus is God, one with the Father, all things that came into being also came through Him.
To have faith is to have an awareness of creation. Faith is believing that God is mysteriously at the root of all things. And Christ Jesus, who is God with us, connects our faith to eternity in a way unknown before His life, death and resurrection as the Son of Man. To have faith in God is to be known by God and we are saved by our faith. Faith is easier to talk about than to have within us.
In a society and culture that puts a premium on success and winning, our faith is strained. We feel pressure to take control of things and personally manage them. Discipline and determination are admirable traits only if we recognize our true source as being God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. In a natural world sense, it is hard for us to understand that giving up control through faith will gain control for us with God at our side.
We wonder what happens to us after our natural life ends. We have no way of seeing how this will work using our physical senses. We have a sixth sense that is our faith in God. It is our faith sense that is the most difficult of our senses to explain, but it is our faith that is the most telling and dependable of our senses. Thanks be to God for our sense that makes no sense but connects us to God’s eternal kingdom: FAITH.
Robert Halsey Pine was born at Newark, Ohio in 1943. He is a graduate of Northeastern University and completed the program of Theological Education by Extension: Education for Ministry, School of Theology, the University of the South.