Thursday, February 4, 2016

Spiritual Journey Thursday - Faith

It is Spiritual Journey Thursday.  Go to Holly Mueller's site, Read, Write, Think and check out the Linky to see what others have written on FAITH.

Today Justin Stygles' has given us his OLW, "Faith", or as he has written it, "(Blind) Faith".  "Blind" in front of the word "faith", could mean that we cannot see what lies ahead.  So we go ahead blindly, hoping for a good outcome - as we hold onto the faith leading us down the path - or up the path.



But in my life, I don't feel that I'm walking "blindly" when I walk by faith.  When it says in the Bible that I walk by faith and not by sight, the "not by sight" part still doesn't mean I am blind. I have knowledge of God and his desires for me, and I've determined that God is with me.   I may not be able to see what He is walking me toward, but I have my eyes on God.  In that and in Him, I am not blind, and I cannot be walking blindly then.  I am walking by faith, with my eyes wide open.

Is a tightrope walker walking blindly as they focus on their goal, not looking down, but straight ahead?  They don't see the tightrope they are walking on, but they have faith that it is there even when they aren't looking at it.  In a sense, they are walking blindly, but they know they just need to keep their eyes on the other side, not the tightrope nor the ground beneath them.  They are trusting in the tightrope beneath their feet.  They've walked it before.  They've made sure that it is fastened appropriately.  They have practiced the movements before.  They could do it with their eyes closed.  But they didn't do it blindly.

There have been many times when I have had to keep my eyes on God and not think of the swirling waters or hard stones beneath me.  Remember Peter walking on the water at the calling of Jesus?  He was okay right up until the moment he took his eyes off Jesus and the doubts about what he was doing were allowed to swallow him up, and he sank.
The good thing though, was still that Jesus was there to rescue him and pull him back to safety.  Was Peter blind when he walked on the water - following blindly - or was he walking with the knowledge that Jesus was with him and was the source of his power?

Blind faith has the connotation of doing without seeing or thinking (though some of the thinking gets easier with faith).  Once you know how God wants you to respond in life, then you just have to think about the right choice, or path - the one with God.  Don't have blind faith.  Have faith.  Once you have been given grace, you have a different sight.  We can never be blind again. 

When I was a child of 5, I followed my parents to our new home.  I did not ask them where we were going or why or what would we do when we got there.  I followed blindly.  Or was it blindly?  I had faith in them.  I had faith that they were doing the best for me and our family.  Even though in the blind sense, I could not see where we were going and what our new home would be like, I was not blind to my parents' love and care.  I knew I would be safe following them.  I had faith in them.  I kept my eyes on them, and they didn't lead me astray.  Blind faith would, to me, indicate that you have not put your trust or faith in someone trustworthy, or that you do not know if they are concerned about your well-being.

I don't put my trust or faith in just anyone or anything.  I will not follow blindly.  But once the trust has been established and proven, then I can have that faith in them and follow even if I'm not sure of the outcome.

I can't leave without a poem.  It's what I do, I guess. 

Faith

I have faith in my key to open the door,
I have faith in my stove to bake,
I have faith in the roads I drive upon
And that maps show the right road to take.

I have faith that the windows will keep out the rain,
And faith that I'll get birthday wishes;
I have faith that my shoes will keep my feet warm,
And faith that I'll have enough dishes.

But those are the faiths that don't matter much,
The faiths in the things of the world;
I'm looking for faith that is stronger than that -
I'm looking for faith that's unfurled.

I'm seeking an outstretching, fathomless faith,
One that starts with a flickering flame
Until it is roaring and blazing upward
And warming my heart with His name.

This faith isn't blind to the person with sight;
It's right there in front of your eyes -
This faith calls for you to come nearer and know;
There is no beguilement or guise.

Faith in the Truth, the Way, the Life,
Faith in the promises made;
Faith in the Lamb, the one True Vine,
Faith that your way has been paid.

The roaring faith, the bold, the pure,
In God who was man on the cross -
The kind of a faith that leads you to live
In His comfort, despite any loss.

For we walk by faith and not by sight;
Trust in his footsteps to guide;
He loved you more than anyone could
And He proved that the day that He died.

Donna JT Smith, 2/2016

16 comments:

  1. Oh, Donna. This is beautiful. Your prose explains thoughts so well, but your poetry sings and stirs my heart with its well-chosen phrases. I am so glad poetry is "what you do." This is another good one to share with my Bible study group!

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    1. You are again, so kind! Say "hi" to your Bible study group for me! Oh, and your postcard is on its way.

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  2. Yes! Poetry is what you do! :) Thanks for your perspective on "blind." My best friend from college is blind. She uses many tools to help her see... an arm, a dog, a cane, sounds and sensations -- which are all different kinds of sight. For me, "blind" indicates a special vulnerability and open-ness to the world more than a lack of sight. Happy day to you!

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    1. There was a blind girl in my high school class. We shared the same first name, and when I married, I ended up with her last name, too. She was a beautiful singer and so smart. I think without the distractions of sight, humans are open to seeing some things more clearly with their other senses.

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  3. How reassuring! Thought I might be the only one troubled by (blind)! I love the last stanza of your poem. I love how you worked into your post about walking by faith, not by sight, and how that doesn't equate to blind faith. God bless you! THANK YOU!

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    1. I didn't want (blind) to bother me so much, but I think that is what some people think about faith - that it must be and has to be blind. But it isn't. It just seems like it to those without sight. Oh, I have to go write a thought. I "saw" some more. Thanks!

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  4. We have faith in simple things because we can see how they work. Faith in spiritual goes deeper. I love your thoughts here. I think blind faith is believing despite what a situation appears to be. We believe even when it is darkest that Jesus has already lighted the way. As you said, His love is something to cling to in faith. It is so strong that He died for us.

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    1. It's good to have a Lighted Path. Even when we don't understand where it leads, we can be sure we aren't alone!

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  5. You've explained very well what I was thinking when I read the word "blind" modifying "faith." I have the sense that writing your "Faith" poem took you to a good place. I like how your everyday examples of faith build to your bedrock beliefs.

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  6. I was having trouble with that word (blind) as well. You articulated the feeling for me. Your poem in its rhyme and rhythm make faith a march to the beat of His drum, knowing he is leading us home.

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    1. Hope you are starting to mend, Margaret.

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  7. Donna, the line from your thoughtful poem that resonates with me is: I'm seeking an outstretching, fathomless faith. I love that image. Faith is deep and unending. All we need to do is believe and search for the possibilities.

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  8. Donna,
    I appreciate your deep thoughtfulness as you work through what faith means to you, and the addition of the word "blind". Bravo! I love what Margaret said about your poem - "...in its rhyme and rhythm make faith a march to the beat of His drum, knowing He is leading us home." Yes! I got your lovely postcard yesterday. The photo is gorgeous, and so are the words that accompany it. Thank you for sending it to me!

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  9. Faith that's unfurled. What a lovely image.

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