I try to just tell the obnoxious voice of Cynicism to “get thee behind!”
It’s Satan for sure, planting these thoughts in my brain.
But now that the doubts have really settled in, and I am wondering if God is real, that answer is not satisfying. If there is no God, there is no Satan.So how does one go about discovering if God is real? The quandry that most haunts me is what exactly is "divine intervention?" If God is real, does he intervene? And if he always intervenes, if he takes control of all things, what IS he point of prayer? Or does he selectively intervene? And if so, how can I know when he HAS intervened?
The idea occurred to me to write a gratitude journal, to recognize God's hand in my life. But this is a frustrating effort. It is easy enough to make long lists of my blessings. I have many blessings for sure. But where is the proof that they come from God?
One night I was talking to Pete about all this. “Just ask” he said. But I know I can’t.
I can’t ask because I’m terrified about what it will mean if he doesn’t answer. It’s not that I think that if God doesn’t answer me, it means he isn’t real. It just might mean that he isn’t really involved in my life.
So for now I don’t ask. Or I ask half-heartedly, hoping for some answer but being able to quickly explain it away if he doesn’t answer. In the words of Dieter F. Uchtdorf, I sit in the dark room, waiting for someone to flip on the switch.
What I do look for are signs that he is real. And I see them sometimes. I see them in faces. I hear it in the lyrics to a Disney song. (Because people, that's the Pandora station we listen to around here.)
"I can show you the world, shining shimmering splendid. Tell me [Jane], now when did you last let your heart decide?"
Heart? Decide? No way. All important decisions are made with careful intellectual consideration after extensive study and adequate research. Heart? Do you take me for a fool? I want PROOF!!!*****************************
A guy walking down the street falls into a dark and deep hole. The walls around him are steep and high. He calls out for help.
A doctor walks by and hears his plea. The doctor writes a prescription and tosses it down into the hole.
The guy calls out for help again and a bishop walks by. The bishop writes a scripture on a paper and tosses it down the hole. The guy is discouraged and hopeless. He calls out for help again.
A friend walks by and hears his cries. The friend jumps down into the hole.
The guy says to the friend "I appreciate your kindness, but you're an idiot. Now we are stuck in the hole."
"No." says the friend. "I've been in this hole, and I know how to get out."