Take the leap of faith in God and yourself

By  (Natasha Milavec, Youth Speak News
  • January 29, 2010
Faith. Recently, I have been puzzled with this five-letter phenomenon. This tiny word is loaded with huge potential. Faith is belief, a leap, a trust in a force beyond ourselves. Mother Angelica, an American Roman Catholic nun, said “Faith is one foot on the ground, one foot in the air and a queasy feeling in the stomach.”

During times of hardship, our faith is challenged. We look towards God, others and even ourselves to find comfort in our pain. That is why I initially thought there was a profound difference between faith in God, others and ourselves.

Faith in God is in some ways easier for me to wrap my head around. That faith is a living entity. As Catholics, we witness it in the institution of the Catholic Church. Our faith in God is further inspired by the lives of the saints, which cause one to question, how can I not believe in God?Then I look at the world through a different lens. I hear stories of people who suffer due to natural disaster. I am reminded of the Book of Job, where we learn that complete faith in God is a vocation.

Others suffer because they witness the brutality of man. I believe these people do not lose faith in God directly, but in His people. Since we are made in God’s image, it becomes clear that faith in others is an honourable vocation.

God gives us the gift of free will. When we abuse this gift, we are saying we do not need faith in God. Therefore, we dishearten others by giving them the impression that He has lost faith in us. However, nothing can be further from the truth. St. Teresa of Avila said, “Christ has no body but yours, no hands, no feet on Earth but yours.” Right now, we are the personification of His love. We have an obligation to fuel people’s faith in God by allowing them to have faith in us, even though this proves to be difficult at times.

What about the faith we have in ourselves? For some time I thought this could not be divine, but I know now I was wrong. God does not only permit us to reach our full potential, He encourages us. When we embrace our talents, we are saying, “I have faith in myself God, because I have faith in You! I deserve to let my light shine!”

In her book A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles, Marianne Williamson writes, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.”

I came to the conclusion that faith in others and in our own capabilities is ultimately a faith in God. Each takes time, practice and energy, and while they are not easy, they are all worthwhile. Each time you say yes to a virtuous faith, you make an inseparable yes to God, who will always have an undying faith in you.

(Milavec, 16, is a Grade 11 student at Father John Redmond Catholic Secondary School in Toronto.)

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