I have always considered myself a Christian. I was born into a Methodist home, raised in a Methodist church and I attended Sunday school as a child. I can remember the pride that I had on becoming an acolyte as a young boy and getting a children’s bible.
Although we changed churches quite a bit throughout my childhood due to moving, I still felt a connection to the community of church whenever we would return. All that changed when my grandmother died.
I was fourteen years old and I remember being furious at God. Angry that the one woman who I felt always was my rock and guiding light would be swept out of my life. It was during her battle with breast cancer that that my mother and father divorced and any remaining faith I had went down the proverbial toilet. Now, I’m not saying that I became agnostic (those who question the belief in a higher deity) or atheist (those who don’t believe in God at all)… What I am saying is that I failed to care whether there was a God, whether God was real or whether anything else was. I was angry, I was numb to everything and I felt alone.
Fast forward almost twenty years to the birth of my first child.
My beliefs again were put through the wringer. For the first time since my grandmother had died, I was certain without a doubt that there was a God. I could not see anyway that such a precious life could be created. So complex, so incredibly and so beautiful without some higher power orchestrating things on a level that we still can’t perceive. I’m not saying I came full circle, my doubts are still very strong in many areas. However, believing that there is in fact a God (in whatever form he/she or it may be) for me is most definitely there.
This whole realization pushed me to analyze my faith and the very concept of faith, God and in some cases religion. The more I wrote, the more I discovered that there were underlying tones of faith within my stories / books (like The Lantern). People ask me all the time if I intentionally write those into the stories. The reality is, I don’t intentionally write anything. I don’t write an outline, I don’t know how a story is going to end. I simply sit down and start writing. Yes, I have a concept at times or an idea that I want to move with, but it’s never as rigid as a planned out piece. It’s my heart flowing out of my fingers and onto paper. Most of the time, I’m as surprised as everyone else where things go within the stories.
Now I face another life changing situation. One that I am uncertain of whether it’s questioning my faith, encouraging it or negating it. Only time will tell.
That being said, my whole of experiences with having children, dealing with life issues and now with writing has caused me to analyze time and again my morals, my beliefs and the blurred lines between right and wrong. What is true, and what is not? At the moment, I believe strongly that there is a higher power. The Bible, the Torah, the Qur’an and every other written text out there (as far as I’m concerned) was written by man. Do I believe that there might have been some divine influence in such writings, or that they may have been written by those strong in faith? Yes, absolutely. However, they are humanity’s interpretation of something that they do not understand; what lies before our existence and what lies after it.
What do you believe or feel? There is no right or wrong, there is only opinions and there is nothing wrong with having an opinion.