The mystery of Christian life

Mom, so there is only one thing that bothers me at the moment, who came first? Was it the dinosaurs that were destroyed by a massive asteroid or was it Adam and Eve? ”

This is the kind of question I get from my nine year old early in the morning during our family devotional time. How do I answer a question like this when I am still only half awake and haven’t even finished my first cup of coffee? To add to this my twelve year old then immediately starts spewing out evolutionary ‘facts’ that he has learned from school, not yet realising that with facts there are also certain assumptions that need to be considered.

It is times like these that I have this fleeting wish that we still lived in the period where the adult’s viewpoint is what the children have to follow no questions asked, but times have changed and of course these are only one of many valid questions that follow us even in our more mature age with regards to our Christian beliefs.

Today we have people disagreeing about the age of earth and how the universe was created to name only a few, and to be honest, I love watching each of these television programmes that discuss people’s different viewpoints. But, it is when I sit down in the morning for my quiet time, with my Bible and prayer, that I have to answer the same question every time: “Considering everything that people say around me, what is it that I believe and what is the true source for that believe?”

No-one can answer that question for you, except yourself. I cannot force my children in a direction, because I have learned that faith is personal and can be forced on no-one. As Christians, do we understand everything that happened in history? No. Do we understand all of God’s actions today? No. Do we want to have the wisdom and understanding for all of it? Absolutely, but that is just not going to happen and we need to accept it.

My only answer that I can give to my children is that they must choose their source of belief, and in my case, I choose the Bible. The Bible does not give us specifics and detail of how God created the universe, because that was not its objective. Nothing in the Bible denies that there wasn’t any dinosaurs before Adam and Eve, but what it does prove is that for the universe to have been created it needed God and God existed before Creation.

This is only one of the mysteries of our Christian Faith and there are many more, but Paul in his letter to Timothy writes that there are certain things that are clear to us and to which we can hold on:

1 Timothy 3:14-16

“…this Christian life is a great mystery, far exceeding our understanding, but some things are clear enough:

He [Jesus] appeared in a human body, was proved right by the invisible Spirit, was seen by angels. He was proclaimed among all kinds of peoples, believed in all over the world, taken up into heavenly glory.” (MSG)

This is the challenge of Christianity. To get to a point where we accept that we are human and incomplete. That God has given us many gifts and a brain to understand many things, but not all and that there are mysteries that will always be unexplainable to us. It is when we accept this, that we start the process of thinking less of ourselves as little gods and start humbling ourselves to a God that is powerful and above our understanding.

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