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Blunt utensilsSeptember 28, 2015

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Last Tuesday we took Adam and Baba with us on the weekly shop, it was a nice day, the walk was calming. There, we decided to stop at the supermarket cafe to give Adam his tea and perhaps have a light tea ourselves. In this echoing space, partially screened from the bustle of a 24 hour shopping experience and with a trolley doubling as a high-chair we had a conversation about a knife. These knifes looked all right from the first glance, but one soon realised that the end curve was beyond blunt. Cutting anything more resistant than a trifle was, well, a trifle awkward. Something in that knife rang a bell, enough for me to take the photo and ponder as the week went past.

Have I let my faith go blunt?

Faith is a strange beast, it dries out without a regular water, grows mould when we get overly content, cracks and splinters when it’s not stretched regularly. It’s a precious and delicate thing is faith, though often we wield it like a sword that’s rusted and old and blatantly more a symbol of attack than revolution. I don’t want my faith to be like that. Missionaries are expected to have it all together faith wise, who expects this I’m not sure, but it certainly feels that way, it’s not true though and we too get blunt.

Last week I also received an e-mail from a lady that made me need to defend my faith. It wasn’t an attack but a plea to recognise aspects of Christianity we weigh differently. I’ll be honest, my first reaction was not positive. I read the long script knowing I needed to form a reply, knowing I had an opportunity to alienate or include, knowing it would be a task to ponder and deliberate. As I sculpted phrases and paragraphs in my response, reading and re-reading her e-mail, I was struck by the passion her faith displayed. I resonated with her journey, the inherited theology, the fracturing of her religion as she discovered the depth of her true faith, followed by the painful deliberation of rebuilding a home in your heart that was fit for the king of the universe to enter. It was a journey I had made before and yet somehow the photo album of that time was dusty already.

As Septembers aim to organise removes clutter from the everyday, I realise that the clutter in me also needs a re-order. It needs a dust, a brush, a stacking and indexing, a clean space that my faith can grow into. I’m actively starting that journey, slowly re-shaping the blunted edges. I’m not sure if I’ll have a steak knife or a butter knife as time goes on, but whatever it is I hope it’s fit for the purpose heaven has for it to play.


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