Our guest post today is by SilverRain, who blogs at The Rains Came Down.
When Jesus was suffering on the cross at Calvary, those who put Him there surrounded Him to mock Him. They jeered, “If [thou art] the King of Israel . . . come down from the cross, and we will believe . . . .” (Matt 27:42)
I have emerged from the other end of a marriage that stripped me of my ability to trust myself. It is taking hard work to believe the things that I have survived. I have been accused of things I did not do in a court that seemed sympathetic to the other side. I have learned how to live with a measure of real and daily fear. I have witnessed almost every purpose of my life crumble in my hands. I have not, by any means, lived through the worst that life has to offer, but I have lived through my lot only to be confronted by those who cannot understand and so do not believe me.
My faith has also been left exposed to the elements, raw and aching. I have difficulty knowing what to believe or what to do. I have been confronted time after time with the choice to take the emotionally easy road, to accept what life is telling me, or to take a tiny, twisting and seemingly treacherous path without knowing for certain where I am going or if I can get there. So I think I understand a little better than I did those people who ask for proof.
I have noticed that sometimes those in scripture who ask for proof are given exactly what they ask for, such as Barak with Deborah, the people of Zarahemla, and the those of Ammonihah, while others are left to work out their uncertainty. Often, those who are given the sign they are seeking find that it doesn’t really change their opinions, in the end.
Perhaps the story of this type that I resonate best with is the tale of the man with the palsied son. When told that his son could be healed if he believed, he cried to Jesus, saying, “Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief!”
Time upon time as I have found myself weeping bitterness into my abused pillow, I have cried these exact words in my heart, yearning to feel the fruits of my faith. I ache when I see so many people here on the Internet crying out because they have found themselves at a point in their lives when they just stop believing in the gospel as presented by the LDS Church. I ache because I have looked into that abyss myself, and felt its depths.
The classic analogy to illustrate how that feels is the scene from Indiana Jones when his father lays dying behind him and he is faced with a choice of faith: to walk into a seemingly bottomless chasm, or to turn around and let his father die. He makes that choice, and luckily it works for him. One thing that is poignant about that story is that he almost fully expected to die when he took that step, but he took it anyways because the alternative was worse.
To me, this is raw, living faith. Right now, I am standing at the other end of a failed marriage, and almost every one of the things I have dedicated my life to lie crumbled at my feet. But I don’t keep going to Church and praying with my Father in Heaven because I know that things will work out for me or because I feel as though who I am now has anything to do with the Church and my ward. I pray to my Father and continue going to Church because the alternative—to give up on my dreams and turn my back on what I know (and I do mean know)—is far, far worse.
I don’t know what my future will hold. I don’t know what my Father has in mind for me. But I know Him, and I choose, with eyes open and fear in my heart, to trust Him. I will not wait to believe.