XI: Never forget that passing on life literacy goes for passing on the hope only spirituality offers. So you have doubts! Big deal! Join the club! So you’ve moved on and “grew past” your grandparents’ “simple faith.” Let me tell you their faith wasn’t so simple!
You’re still grateful for the sense of belonging you experienced in your childhood. You still remember being held in loving arms. Sincerity is an overrated virtue. Just because you’re not so sure about God anymore — if you’re old enough to read this , unless you’ve become an idiot you will doubt God’s existence at least some of the time. That doesn’t mean that you can’t pass on what you were given in the secure cocoon of your childhood.
The comfort of the spiritual routines and the contemplative inner life you experienced connected you to a mystery that will remain after you see through the credulous embrace of mythology.
Finding hope in paradox is the point, not your faith or lack of it.
When it comes to your children leave out the things that drove you crazy about the form of spiritual journey your parents launched you on if you want to, but you can still acknowledge the beneficent gift that life is.
You can still take your children to church if you feel that the spiritual life you shared shaped you in good ways. Know this: you’ll never arrive at a conclusion . Life is defined by changing our minds.
So don’t wait for certainty before you do anything about faith for your kids. Don’t rob your children of comfort just because of your doubts.
As your child grows share your doubts, and tell the truth about your loss of faith if and when it happens. And because life is a journey faith may also rekindle from the most unlikely sources and in the oddest times.
Don’t think your child can get to where you got to in your journey by beginning their life of faith where you may to end yours.
(to be continued in this space tomorrow…)
To book Frank Schaeffer to speak at your college, church or group contact him at Frankschaeffer.com