I’ve mentioned that my husband recently retired, and we’re both sorting through “stuff.” All kinds of things we’ve kept in file folders because they seemed important, at least at the time. In in a previous post, I published the confirmation essay one of my daughters wrote —What My Faith Means to Me. I wasn’t sure which daughter wrote it. I’ve now come across the second one, which I can tell was written by my younger daughter. I often tease her about her constant cry when she was little — “It’s not fair!” This was usually uttered in frustration when her sister was allowed to do something she couldn’t. So, in the interest of “fairness” here is Kate’s essay.
In my life, my faith means very much to me. It helps me to get through hard times, and find joy in the happy ones. To me, it’s like a journey, beginning at our birth and ending when we reach heaven. It is not always an easy path to take–it is filled with rocks and mountains. Jesus picks us up when we fall, and helps us to keep going. Often throughout my life, I have found faith to be a boring thing, and did not want to be involved in it. Church was boring, and I would much rather spend Sunday mornings sleeping. When confirmation classes started, I wasn’t any happier. It was an hour long class in the middle of the week. It felt like I was having an extended school day, with homework and memorizing work to go with it. But I went anyway, because my parents wanted me to. I did the work, but refused to let myself get deeply into it. I had better things to do, and church was not on the top list of my priorities. It was during the second year of confirmation class that my feelings toward my faith life started to change. Going to class on Wednesdays didn’t seem as bad anymore, and I found myself praying and looking to God when I needed guidance.
A major influence on my life was one of my best friends, Kati. Until I met her, I didn’t really talk about my faith. She’s Catholic, and encouraged me and my other friends to talk about and be honest about our faith. Through her, I learned that faith isn’t a burden–but a blessing. I shouldn’t be afraid to talk about my faith, and I shouldn’t worry about what people will think of me because of it. This caused a big change to occur in my life. God became a key figure–my friend that was there when I needed Him most. I have found that most times my faith has caused me to be a better friend to others, just as God is a friend to me.
While it is still hard to pull myself out of bed on Sunday mornings, church has a larger meaning to me. It is a way to touch ground with God, and a weekly revival of my faith in Him. I have visited many of my friends’ churches, and learned a lot about them that I never knew before. I am not afraid to discuss my faith life with my friends anymore, and I depend on God when I have a problem. It helps to know that whatever happens, God will always be there for me. He is the best friend that anyone can ever have, and I am reminded daily of that. By watching my friends and my parents act, I have learned some very important things. The most important thing I have learned is that God loves me and will always love me. That is what my faith means to me.
For some of Kate’s more contemporary writing see: