Faithlessness is Not an Option
What was most intriguing about Tim Tebow and ultimately made me an ardent fan was his faith. Iíve written about him before, several times, as I was so impressed with his faith. A faith, I admittedly do not have.
I often get sucked into the vacuum of thinking that life should be relatively pain free. I donít like pain, I struggle to accept struggles and I doubt, lose faith and tend to want to throw in the towel more than I should. There are many areas of life where if I am honest I have little to no faith. There are few areas of my life where I have lots of faith. To have Tebowís faith is to have faith the size of a mustard seed. I suppose that would mean mine is the size of a microscopic cell.
The final verses of Habakkuk show this minor prophet extending complete confidence in God. The book is a quick read and much of it I can relate to as Habakkuk expresses angst over Godís perceived lack of judgment on the unrighteous. But he ends on a high note by expressing his faith and continued trust in God even during the most trying of times.
I recently finished the book Ghost Rider by Neil Peart who narrates his struggle after losing his daughter in a car accident and then his wife to cancer less than a year later. The wincing factor here is Peartís wife clearly died of a broken heart Ė the cancer was just the means to an end. Much of the book can be tedious however the first third is gripping. Peart mentions how he never thought anything bad like losing his family in a yearís time could ever happen to him. Itís honest and relatable. A lot of us are like that. Itís always someone else. Peart is not a man of faith and unfortunately his tragedies only served to alienate him even further than the God he does not know.
Hearing about a lottery winning tends to make people fantasize about what theyíd do with the money. Such is the case after reading Ghost Rider. How would I respond if I was hammered with a one-two punch like Peart endured? I usually hear about people seeking God and finding answers when encountering tough times but I also understand the response Peart had. His reaction to injustice is not much different than Habakkukís though the ancient prophet remained steadfast in his devotion to God.
For nearly two years now I have struggled to find full time work. Having my position eliminated from a large corporate veterinary conglomerate was indeed a blessing but I did not think finding a new job would be so difficult. As time goes on I question whether I will ever work full time again and the idea of returning to a cubicle mill, answering to the wicked and laboring long hours for the arrogant gets less appealing each day. I have always felt, as even Peart mentioned several times in his book, that something will come up. But I am starting to wonder if something ever will come up.
And this is where my faith seems to come to an end.
Ironically, or coincidentally, or the funny thing is, there is one area of my life where I am completely 100 percent faithful. So faithful in fact that my wife has said to me itís one thing she really appreciates and admires me for doing which is tithing. I will tread lightly here as I do not want to be perceived as bragging because I am not. If there is one thing I can attest to as a Christian, it is faithful giving. Several years ago I made the conscious decision to give back 10 percent of our gross income, without fail. I used to give every Sunday but if I did not attend church on a given Sunday I did not give. So, now at the beginning of every month I give an allotment that meets or exceeds 10 percent. I will never waver from this.
And somehow we manage.
To date, my trials and tribulations are far less than what a lot of people have endured. I pray that my life is not ripped out from under me the way Peartís was or the many hundreds of thousands of others who have endured far greater pain than we can imagine. But if it does will I remain faithful? If I donít find full time work, ever, will I remain faithful?
Yet I will triumph in the Lord;
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation!
Yahweh my Lord is my strength;
He makes my feet like those of a deer
and enables me to walk
on mountain heights!
- Habakkuk 3: 18-19
Faith is hard but I donít have enough faith to be an atheist. I wish I did. I canít imagine the mountains I could move.
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