Our faith is a very important part of who we are. In fact, at our core – I suppose it is what truly defines us.
I am very thankful that Shannon and I share the same convictions, in fact, I feel very blessed that the two of us share our faith. It has united us in a way that we wouldn’t have been able to be otherwise. To know that she and I have faith in the same hope, the same promises… and believe the same – is truly wonderful.
It seems like a very simple question; “What do you believe in?”… but the answer to that question is not nearly as simple as one might think.
The answers to that question is extremely varied, depending on whom you ask. The Bible (which we believe is the inspired word of God) has a lot to say about belief.
The word “believe” in the New Testament comes from the Greek word πιστεύω, (pisteuo), which comes from the word for Faith, πίστις (pistis). Faith and Belief go hand in hand, but interestingly, both words come from a primary verb, πείθω (pitho), which translates to trust or assure. The majority of the occurrences of that word within the New Testament translate as ‘Trust”.
So perhaps a better phrasing of the initial question is, “What do you place your trust in?“
Asking it in that way seriously changes the tone of the question… and when asked in that manner – the answer in our family is clear.
We place our trust in God. We don’t place our trust in man, in man’s institutions, or in ourselves – it is not a passive trust; God requires that we do our part. We often jokingly say, “Trust in God, but lock your car.” Despite that statement being somewhat tongue-in-cheek – I think that sums it up fairly well.
In the Light household, we trust… have faith… believe… that God holds our family in the palm of his hand – that he blesses us, protects us, and shelters us. We believe in the gospel message of Jesus Christ and the coming Kingdom of God. We believe that Christ’s first coming didn’t nullify the law, instead, we believe that He amplified it – upping the ante so to speak, and as a result – the law is still in force, yet the grace of God is applied when we fall short. We believe that the sacrifice of Christ forgives our sin, but that God doesn’t accept and tolerate them. We believe that spiritual growth is required, and we are VERY thankful that God is merciful and forgiving as we grow.
We keep the Sabbath and the annual Holy Days of God. We enjoy good food, fellowship and friends, believe that service towards others is good for you, and strive in every facet of our lives to do this life right. We’re not perfect. We mess up. We try to learn from our mistakes and do it right the next time. We try not to be preachy, we simply try to live our lives as we feel that we have been called to live them and pray that the light reflects to this ever-darkening world.
Based on these and other beliefs, and what we ultimately feel that God requires of his people today – the church that we have found that most closely matches our beliefs is the United Church of God. We have made many friends within this organization and are truly blessed to call them brethren.