When you go away to college, lose your scholarship your Freshman year, and move back to my tiny town, you don’t have a Sunday School class (they might now, but not in 1996) so my parents decided it would be a good idea to be my Sunday school teachers. That means that most Sundays it was just the 3 of us sitting in this tiny room at church and I would tell them, as earnestly as a 19 year old could, about how the only reason they believed in Jesus and the whole bible story was because their parents believed it and passed it down to them. This was my best argument for everything religious because I knew there was no actual proof, so they’d have no real answer to this.
I distinctly remember one Sunday sitting in that room and asking them “How do you know that what you believe is real? How can you tell?”
My mother looked at me and said, “I know it because I feel it, and because when I was going in for brain surgery and not knowing if I’d be able to walk or talk again, I could feel a comfort and peace like I’ve never known before and it isn’t something that I can explain. I know it because I choose to believe it.” I’m sure that’s not an exact quote because it’s been a while, but it’s close to what she said and I had nothing to say back to that.
I just sat quietly in that room and thought about it. I think that was the moment that I realized I had to just choose to believe it. I wasn’t going to get proof, but I would eventually over and over again get that feeling that my mother described, but that isn’t proof. It’s just a choice. Now that I’ve been married for 18 years, I realize that marriage is also that same choice. You don’t just decide to get married and everything is great, just look at all the unhappy marriages to prove my point. You have to choose to be married all the time and in little ways every day.
Faith in Jesus isn’t the same, of course, but I think it’s similar in that way. We choose Jesus over and over throughout our lives by our actions. Sometimes we forget or get caught up in ourselves and move away from him and don’t choose him for long periods of time, and unlike a real marriage, he just stays there and waits for us to turn around and see him. Really see Him and choose Him again.