There are three skills that, once learned, change everything. The first is learning to walk. The second is learning to read. The third is learning to pray.
Most of us learned to recite prayers as children. We also learned to walk and read as children. As we grow older, we learn to refine our basic childhood skills so they serve us better as adults.
When I was a child I had a Sunday school understanding of God. I saw God as a kind- and loving Supreme Being who was watching over me and caring for me. That concept worked fine when I was young, but as I grew older and faced increasing complexities in life, there seemed to be a lot of unanswerable questions. Many are able to live faith-filled lives with those questions unanswered. Increasingly, our culture is slipping into agnosticism and atheism as Sunday school answers no longer satisfy our modern understanding of the universe. I am personally of the conviction that if we are going to take the light of Christianity into the next generation, we are going to need to update how we talk about God and how we understand his relationship with his creation.
Once, as I was visiting an exhibit of photographs from the Hubble Space Telescope, I was fascinated by a frame of a thousand stars of different hues and shapes. As I read the caption, I learned that these were not stars, but galaxies. The photo represented a small, dark portion of the night sky described as “about the size of a postage stamp” that allowed the Hubble Space Telescope to peer into space beyond our own galaxy. It was called the Deep Field. As I looked into the photo and allowed its impact to wash over me, I said to myself, “Ed, your God is too small.”
I believe in God – not in a Catholic God; there is no Catholic God. There is God, and I believe in Jesus Christ, his incarnation. Jesus is my teacher and my pastor, but God, the Father, Abba, is the Light and the Creator. This is my Being. ~ Pope Francis