I was sitting in the park knitting yesterday evening and having an imaginary conversation with a friend of mine. I do this a lot, actually. I’m not crazy or anything, but the conversations help me to sort of process my thoughts, and this conversation in particular is one I’ve more or less had — in reality — with a number of different people.
Anyhoo, this conversation was with a certain friend of mine — let’s call her… Cordelia? Cordelia. Like many of my friends and acquaintances, Cordelia isn’t a very religious person. She may believe in something beyond the tangible world, but doesn’t necessarily buy into the organized religious aspect of spirituality. In our conversation, she was a little uncomfortable and even semi-apologetic to me for this, knowing that I am very religious and somehow expecting that I would judge her or think less of her for not being “churched.” I assured her that nothing could be further from the truth, and went on to observe that, in his letters, Paul lists faith among the different gifts of the Spirit, leaving open the suggestion that some (or many) people won’t have faith. But we all have gifts and we are all moved by the same Spirit and I told Cordelia that I knew she had wonderful gifts, gifts I have personally seen her share with others to teach and nurture them and help them grow. I told her that I believed that God created all of us and loves all of us no matter what we believe, and that nothing could be more pleasing to God than that God’s gifts be used for the good of others. Then she asked me a question I didn’t know how to answer. “Why should I go to church, then?” Well… why should she go to church? Continue reading