I’m coming from spending a night with friends and, as tends to happen lately, our conversation eventually drifted to our beliefs and God. Fortunately we’re all Christians but we’re of different denominations which to me isn’t even important. As we spoke I took a minute to look around the room, and before me were three amazing people who are only an infinitesimal decimal point in the total number of human beings on the face of the earth, and yet in that moment these people had been placed in my life, gifts I would never have been able to conjure up in my little mind. Before me were my friends, people who have no reason to give me the time of day but chose to anyway, and God has given them to me for a reason I’ll never be fully able to comprehend while at the same time I can’t imagine my life without them…I didn’t even know they existed before March 2013.
Isn’t it awesome (literally worthy of awe) when you look back at moments in your life and at the time you didn’t know what was going on but it completely changed the path of your life? Please, allow me to open up and share my experience. The first and most poignant example for me is a friend I just happened to meet four years ago. I was in a pit of psychotic mourning after the passing of my grandmother. This was a woman who was my end all and be all. She was the wind beneath my wings. Countless numbers of times she had called me, knowing that my parents weren’t home yet, just to make sure that I was ok. Countless numbers of times I had pulled her away from the path of a reckless driver. In my eyes she was invincible and immortal. When she died tragically and horribly my world not only crumbled, it burst into flames. I hated everyone and went on a self-destructive path where I used people and toyed with their emotions just so that I could hurt them and scar them and show God that I didn’t need him. There was a power in me that held on for months. I had reached the point where if it had rained on my birthday I would murder a city then slit my wrists with a smile on my face. Unexpectedly, three days after my birthday, I met a friend who not only healed me but made me realise that maybe God wasn’t such a bad ‘person’ to get to know. He understood me, accepted me and my faults and I’ve only met him a total of four times in four years. He is the one who made me want to know God and understand and love him just as he did. It’s thanks to that friend that I survived as long as I have and am able to share my thoughts with other people. That one person. Out of over 6 billion (at the time) people on the face of this planet, Earth. One person who saved and transformed my life by walking up to me and saying Hi. Tell me that’s just coincidence.
All over the world Christians get into huge debates about whose view of the Bible is correct and whether the Bible/prayer/cross/Eucharist/tradition is the ultimate Christian thing. That’s not the point though. You just have to look back on your life; at the struggles you conquered, the battles you fought, the bullies you put down, the moments when you felt you couldn’t go on which have led you to this moment in your life. The figure behind that all is what really matters. JESUS. There is no way that this is just a random happening, let alone one determined by humanity. It just wouldn’t make sense.
People often say that Christianity and sciences can’t/don’t mix but they do.
The Big Bang? They’ve confirmed that the universe came from a single point of extreme, ultimate energy which burst out and created infinite numbers of stars and planets and galaxies and black holes and other such. Who’s not to say that that wasn’t God’s doing? Evolution? Each creature came from a dinosaur or winged giant or massive fish and evolved in a million year process to what we see today. Christians say it happened in 6 days. The Bible says in the book of Isaiah that God’s ways are not our ways and that we do not think like God thinks. Who’s to say that God’s day is the equivalent of a human’s 24hr day?
God is the author of time and he conceptualised the neurons that allow us to think and made it happen… He is the ultimate scientist.
We spend our whole lives trying to learn more and understand more so that we may be called wise or change the world. Every human wants to understand. We want to learn. It’s a fundamental factor in our genetic makeup. This is what makes me ache for people who won’t let people learn. Without knowledge nothing can truly make sense to us and that desire for knowledge goes unattended. Children starving in poor villages think “Why am I hungry?” Someone standing in a hospital waiting for the news of a loved one thinks “Why is this happening?” A student listening to a lesson thinks simply “Why?” Every day, no matter what situation we’re in we ask questions, non-stop we want to know and understand.
I lived with a nihilist a few months ago who didn’t believe in life having a meaning, social structures serving a purpose, family and general groupings of people being relevant, etc. I have never experienced such pain for another person as I did then. He was living for the sake of it. He ate, slept, exercised, spoke and breathed without purpose. He is basically finding ways to pass the time until he dies. And he’s not the only one. When I would sit beside him and we’d watch television or engage in debates I could never shake a coldness from within him, his eyes were missing a spark. He studied at Harvard and is now at Stanford learning more just for the sake of it. He was empty and I pray for him as often as I can because I worry for him. The meaning of life is such a big question for all humans and I still remember his answer to it when I posed it , “Who says life has to have a meaning?”
I’m a strong believer in ‘to each his own’ but seriously when you sit down and you look at each person you’ve met, decision you’ve made, thing you’ve bought and the repercussions on the lives of people on this planet, how can this all be random? How can this all make sense? I understand where non-believers would chime in and say “How does a mystical being watching over us all who created the universe and supposedly loves us not only kill his own son but let the world he ‘saved’ fall into such chaos?” It’s a question no human can answer sufficiently but give me a 100% accurate (not just plausible) sign/reason for how all the things that have happened in the lives of everyone who has lived on this planet and is yet to be born all come down to chance?
Not all will be convinced and I don’t think that it’s my job to try but I do have the brain and the ability to think about it and come to the conclusion that there is “an amazing, loving God who had no obligation to give us life but chose to do so anyway”. If that’s not one of the most striking statements to ever come out of the mouth of a 19 year old man then I don’t know what is.
May God continue to bless you, your families and friends and show Himself to those who know Him but choose to reject Him, and those who run the risk of never learning about Him, because life has meaning and God makes life make sense.