Friday, January 2, 2009

Creative Faith

They say that faith should not be confused with proof. That faith is believing in spite of a lack of proof. I guess it all depends on what you require for proof. I think of the philosophical discussions I have had with my father who contends that God is a creation of humankind who arrived at the belief of His existence because they could not find a logical explanation for certain phenomenon. I am not prone to argue with my father. He is not easily persuaded. But then I am not easily persuaded by him to give up my belief in God. Granted, I have a very hard time understanding why certain things are allowed to happen under God’s umbrella over this earth. But for me, proof of God comes from the creative. Both God’s creations (from the intricacies of cellular function to the vastness and variety of nature’s wonders) and mankind’s creative spirit and capabilities. Nothing in the natural order of things would result in the beauty of a musical symphony or the great (and not so great) art masterpieces. The fact that man is both created and creative is my proof. A foundation of my faith and what I consider one of God's greatest gifts. What I find interesting is my father’s own creativity: his art and skill at things artistic are proof to me that he is God’s, though he does not acknowledge the existence of his creator. My father has seen and experienced things in this world that are beyond what most get to see. And he appreciates the beauty and preciousness of the earth. One of my most favorite (and bravest) things I did occurred this last summer when he was driving me and a guest of mine by boat up the river in front of his cabin. The view was spectacular: the trees and sky reflected on the water. I said to my friend, who was seeing this for the first time, “how can one be in the midst of all this beauty and doubt God’s existence.” The trick is that I said it loud enough for my father to hear, and the real beauty is that he chose not to argue with me.

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