I have always struggled with faith.
I have never really known what faith is. Is it trust? Is it belief? Is it action taken on the basis of belief alone (like the bible says, "faith without works is dead")? Is it the product of reason?
The bible teaches that salvation comes by faith alone. It also teaches that faith is a gift of God. If that is true, then does that mean that only God chooses who will be saved and who will be damned, and He gives faith only to those He chooses?
I have wrestled with questions like this for years. I have never been comfortable with faith, or understood exactly what it was, or how it works. Jesus said that if a man had faith the size of a mustard seed, he could tell a mountain to be taken up and cast into the sea. Many times, I have tried to summon that very small seed of faith and get something done...something far more important than moving a mountain. Things like the healing of cancer, or the end of conflict. It never happened, which of course made me worry that I could never have enough faith to be saved...if I did not have enough faith to move a mountain!
For the past several years, I have tried to replace faith with reason. The problem is, as I examine my life through meditation and contemplation...I find I am using faith almost every moment of every day. I least I think I am.
Is faith trust? If so, then I am trusting of things I can't verify by reason all the time. Or maybe I am trusting things that happen consistently because I do them over and over and always get the same result. Things like turning on a light switch, or driving in the right lane, or moving through an intersection when the light is green.
So, faith. I can't live with it, and can't live without it. I don't know what it is, I don't know how it works.
I guess that is exactly what faith means.
I think I am going to contemplate love for a bit.