Faith, Simplified

Since this past weekend was Easter and that meant I was busy with family (making memories and enjoying together time all weekend back at my parent’s farm and the house I grew up in) I thought I would venture back into a thought based post rather than a recipe based post. Frankly, I’m still so full from all the amazing food consumed over the weekend that I’m not up to the task of cooking quite yet ๐Ÿ˜‰ Please know upfront with this post that I’m not out to convert anyone’s faith or to tell anyone who/what to believe in. What I would like to chat about is how important I wholeheartedly believe it is to have a simple faith in something.

The phases of faith…

As a mom, I’m now at the point in adulthood where I’m not only choosing to make my own faith a priority, but I’m also forming my child’s faith. This is a huge responsibility and one, quite frankly, I’m not entirely sure I’m equipped to handle. But, alas, I have faith that I was put into this role for a reason and that I will find a way to handle the responsibility.

When my daughter was an infant it was so simple to bring her to church each week nestled in her baby carrier sound asleep (after keeping us up most of the night before). It was easy to sit in the pew surrounded by fellow believers and feel that sense of community and an overwhelming need to thank someone much higher than myself for giving me such a precious gift.

Gradually, it became more and more difficult to keep up that routine of going to church each week because trying to corral (and repeatedly shh, shh, SHUSH) an overactive and ridiculously curious toddler was no easy feat. Let alone the fact that it was increasingly hard to feel that sense of belonging and gratefulness for the so-called gift of a child who was currently throwing her crayons over the pew while simultaneously shrieking for no apparent reason. It became easier to feel embarrassed of the attention drawn to us instead of the sermon and became more frustrating that I was missing the message of the day due to my child who was getting zero effects of the service.

Now, as we have entered the next phase of church-going-with-kids, it’s back to being easier because she’s school age and knows (most of the time) what appropriate behavior in church means. This, in turn, equates into me getting to hear the message again and gives me the chance to explain things now that my child is old enough to at least vaguely understand.All those frustrated mornings spent in the hard toddler phase are suddenly distant memories and I’m so glad we have kept this routine as a constant in our family’s life.

It’s ironic how easily these phases of faith in a religion can be compared to a general faith in anything. What do I mean? Consider your faith in your own day you feel like the best mom or manager ever, the next you feel like you have no idea why you would even dream of being qualified to do that job. Depending on your current circumstances, you may find it insanely simple to think positively that everything will turn out alright after getting that tax refund or a promotion at work. Or, after a rough work week or bad news or unexpected price tag dipping into your savings, it may be just as easy to be a Debbie Downer and think that things will just keep spiraling out of control and never get better.

Same concept applies to kids and faith outside the church. Take a child’s faith in say, the Easter bunny. Simple enough to introduce that faith when they are an infant and could care less about those adorable bunny ears you perched precariously on their head for the cutest picture ever! It then goes on to be perhaps even more simple as kids go into the toddler phase and begin to grasp the concept of faith..believing that the Easter bunny will come around once a year with sweet treats for them. Then, somehow it gets difficult again, as kids get older and friends without their same faith try to shed your own child of their faith. Or, as their intelligence level climbs and suddenly things don’t add up (a giant Easter bunny who brings basket and hides eggs..really? Why wouldn’t it hide carrots?).

Believe in something..anything!

I’ve found that faith is just as important to adults as it is to kids and it’s somehow not important that faiths are the same. Meaning that some kids might not believe in Santa while others would literally fight you to defend his honor but, chances are, both those kids have total faith that their parents will pick them up from daycare/school each and every day without fail. Similarity, you may not believe that you are a good mom but your friends and family are looking at your same actions and believing you’re doing your best and doing quite well. I may attend one denomination of church while my parents attend another, but we all believe that we alone are not in charge of our lives and that there is someone/something guiding us. I don’t write in a journal or pray every day at the same time like some of my friends but you can bet your bottom dollar that if one of those friends of mine hit a rough patch then you know I will be first in line to pray for them and ask others to do the same.

Alright, I hear you, what’s the moral of this story? It really doesn’t matter what your faith is in as long as you have faith. It’s bound to be hard, then easy, then impossible, then effortless depending on the current phase of your life. It’s bound to change from time to time and it will unfailingly frustrate you when attempting to explain your faith to someone who doesn’t share that same faith. It’s alllllllll good!

That faith (whatever kind) is part of what makes you, you! Whether it makes you the parent you want to be, a rock solid work manager, or the friend that your friend needs, hang onto that faith. Personally, today I choose to have faith in myself that I’m doing the best I can, I choose to believe that prayers really do make a difference, and I choose to hope that anyone reading this will take just a moment to reflect on their faith, however simple it may be!


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