Thursday, March 05, 2009

Secret #4: Your Faith is a Big, Expensive Gift:(Better than Wii)

To My Children,
At your Baptism ceremony in church, daddy and I made a promise to God that we would teach you about Catholicism, and pass on our faith to each of you. One very important thing that I’d like you to know is from St. Paul’s letter to the Colossians. (He wrote to the Christian community at Colossae in around 61 A.D.).The Christians in Colossae were a lot like us, even though they lived so long ago. He gave the Colossians a beautiful gift of information, a secret about the great gift of faith. When you are older you should read this whole letter in the Bible to really understand what I’m saying.

Here are some main points. It is my wish that each of you seek to live a “top shelf life.” Remember that it is okay to have fun, as long as you keep a balance, and always keep your goals in sight. I hope that your lives are “rooted in Christ.” That means that when you are bombarded by the pressures and false messages of this world, you will be firmly planted in your faith, and able to withstand them.

Faith and spirituality need support to grow. Your family is part of your faith support system. This idea might seem funny sometimes when so-and-so annoys the stuffing out of you, but it also comes from the letter to the Colossians. This also goes for your church community. Remember that it is made up of people who are not perfect. At times, church leaders may upset you. Do not stop going to mass. This community is an extension of your family. Just like our church community, our little family is not perfect, but we are ideally meant to be a “domestic church,” a safe community where you are loved and accepted always, just as you are. Please always make an effort to stay close with each other, even if you move far away, or have differences. Family support is very important to me, and I made sacrifices to be sure that you would be close as siblings.

Faith is an expensive gift. Catholics believe that Jesus is God. Through Jesus' death and Resurrection, we have eternal life in heaven. Jesus lived, suffered, and died for every man and woman to show us the way to live, because he loves us all. In this way, Christianity is a very expensive gift. I can not explain this. It is a mystery. Trying to follow Jesus in your actions is a way to show gratitude.

One last note: It is not uncool to pray. As you know, we try to say grace at dinner. It is my hope that each of you will talk to God unceasingly, in your thoughts throughout each day. Praying is very cool. There is a good book you can read about prayer called: Are You There God? It’s Me, Margret by Judy Blume. You know how I feel about the importance of the rosary, and I hope that my example rubs off on you a bit. The rosary gives you special strength, but it is not magical. In this meditative prayer, you become closer to God and the Holy Spirit is strengthened within you. For example, you will be able to better withstand peer pressure. I can not explain this, but I believe it.

I love each one of you with all my heart,



Anonymous said...

This post reminds me of how the strength and purity of your faith rubbed off on me in a small way.

For those who don't know me, faith is an area that I have struggled with for a long time and continue to do so. I do say my prayers, and would like to believe in a higher order, but the logic and scientific side has a hard time wrapping around the concept of how the two can coexist. Add on top of that, how I see the word of God perverted by so many so-called spiritual leaders does not really help my ability to surrender to my faith for guidance and strength. Just accepting of it is a real challenge for me.

So back to my college days. I can't remember the class name, but on the first day, we were given an assignment asking us to write "who is Christ." I expanded upon my thoughts above. Throughout the class, we explored the letters to the Corinthians. As we discussed those letters and the messages contained within them, I could see how Loren's life was lived by the example set in those letters. It left a striking impression on me.

The last assignment was the same as the first - write an essay on "Who is Christ?" taking into account what was discussed throughout the semester. As my own struggles continued to find the answer to that question for myself, I drew a lot of comparisons to what I saw in Loren as a living example of all that was discussed in class, putting in perspective how I was trying to grow in my own faith.

That paper was returned with no grade but a "See me" note from the teacher. We talked a bit about my spiritual growth during the class. That growth helped improve an otherwise mediocre grade and to this day, Loren's inspiration for that paper hangs with me as a reminder of what faith can mean if I ever find the way to reconcile all the conflict I have regarding it. Just reading this was another reminder...


Putz said...

beautiful writing but where does all that leave me a mormon?????

Louise said...

What a beautiful letter to write to one's children. You seem to me to be a very strong, caring and thoughtful mother.

Loren Christie said...

Mr. Putz,
Aren't Mormons also Christians? I think we are similar.
Anyway, whatever your faith is, as long as it does good and not harm, practice it!

Loren Christie said...

Thank you Louise. GT, I did not know about that class or that paper. Wow. Thank you.

Elizabeth Kathryn Gerold-Miller said...


Elizabeth Kathryn Gerold-Miller said...

What is the recommended age for "Are you there God?" I know a young lady who really needs a book that will give her hope.

Loren Christie said...

Hi Elizabeth,
The book I mentioned is more appropriate for girls than boys, as it also addresses specific changes of a girl going through puberty. I plan to look for a similar book for boys, since I have two.

So, the age would be 11-15.

Dear Internet Traveler,

Welcome to my writer's blog, started about six years ago for fun. Over time, the writing I have posted has ranged from personal reflection, to Long Island history research, to tall tales for my own amusement, to feature articles for local newspapers. As you can see from topics listed here, I travel in many mental directions in regard to interests. Click on the tabs and labels to explore my strange mind which senses that you may be having a criss-cross day. If so, perhaps this blog will distract you. However, please note that if you tell me my blog is beautiful just to get me to advertise rhinoplasty surgery and cheap drugs from Canada in your comment, I will ask the gods to give you a tail that cannot be concealed.


Loren Christie

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