In today’s culture, it is becoming increasingly common for people to believe in only what they can see. I always want to ask such free thinkers if they believe in the wind or love or hope or outer space, but that’s not nice, so I usually keep my thoughts to myself. And that’s not really the point of this post, so I’ll move on from that. Anyway, the point is that people like this tend to think that God is a made-up superstition because they cannot see Him.
But this must not be a new thing. Over 2000 years ago, the author of the letter to the Hebrews addressed it this way:
He goes on to list many people from Old Testament times who exhibited great faith, in what has come to be known as the “Faith Hall of Fame”.
Yes, faith means that we are confident and assured about something we cannot see. But everyone puts their confidence in something. In secular societies like this one, people put their confidence in things they can see–things like the government or a particular leader. But history has shown–and the recent trajectory of our country continues to suggest–that the farther people walk away from God, the more brutal and violent they become.
Here’s one way to think of it. We are here in a place that may seem desirable until we catch a glimpse of God hanging out in a place of indescribable beauty, joy, and peace. Trouble is, there’s a great chasm between where we are and where He is. Faith is the bridge that spans the chasm, enabling us to get over to paradise. Anyone is free to cross the bridge. All you have to do is be confident and assured that the bridge will hold you, that it will support the weight of your life while you cross the chasm. It may be a bit challenging to have that confidence since you can’t see for sure that the bridge makes it to the other side.
Here is the alternative.
Since some people lack that confidence and assurance, there are many other bridges to choose from. They start off looking like they will also take you to paradise, but they always veer off in another direction. But it’s OK, people will tell you, because at least you see the entire bridge.
So, is it better to take the bridge that you can’t see the end of, but you know it takes you to the right place, or is it better to take one that you can see the end of, and you know it doesn’t take you where you want to go?
For me, it’s better to jump onto the bridge that Jesus is beckoning me to choose. It may be rickety at times, and it may take some twists and turns I hadn’t expected, but at least it ends up on the other side of the chasm. And Jesus will be there every step along the way, guarding me, guiding me, escorting me home.
Faith is the bridge across the chasm to God.