One of my favorite twitter quotes goes like this:
Loyalty is choosing to stay when you believe you should leave. Faith is choosing to believe that you should stay. -Ram Sundaram
Of course there is more to faith than simply believing you should stay. (Keep in mind that anyone who knows me knows that when I use the word faith, it has nothing to do with the Christian connotations of the word, being decidedly heathen in my spiritual outlook.) Faith is kind of meaningless in the glamorized conversational sense. As stated elsewhere, conviction is easy when you’re talking about it; the more difficult path is living it without an audience. Perhaps this explains the relentless need to proselytize. Actually living out what you proclaim is so much more difficult than the proclaiming. Certainty is legion for as long as your mouth is open.
But I digress.
Time is the problem.
The space between the faith-born certainty and its proof fills with doubt. Doubt and competing priorities. Options, fears, confusion, uncertainty.
If I could decide what time means, the right scale by which to assess its relevance, then perhaps the rest of the calculus would fall into place.
On one hand, both inside and outside Christianity, we get reminded that G-d’s time is not the same as ours. (Substitute universe or source for G-d if you are so inclined.) And this makes sense. Look at it from an evolutionary standpoint. We are specks of dust, if that. The years we count in are meaningless. What can be accomplished in one lifetime is to the universe what one ant can get done in a single day to us. What difference does another day, another year make? These measures are nothing in the big picture. And in this framework, what are you to do but carry on and trust that the universe will deliver the right thing in the right time.
This schema goes along with the comforting idea that you’re doing exactly what you need to be doing right where you are, which is comforting when you always feel like you haven’t quite done enough, pushed yourself hard enough, produced enough.
On the other hand, there’s the feeling that you are always the star of your own movie. In which case every second counts and there’s no such thing as being content letting things play out as they will. Worst case scenario, the gaps between should be handled with a video montage and a good song that covers the gaps where faith (or lack thereof) is in play.
I fear both are true, depending on where you stand. In which case it becomes apparent that the only clear answer is that I think too much. So I careen from one stance to the other, with my ego stating unequivocally that it is time to get this show on the road and the part of me that meddles in faith saying that there’s nothing to worry about, that whatever it is is exactly what it needs to be and that, when the time is right, it will become something else entirely – something meant to fit the time and the space allocated.
Which is no answer at all.