How do beliefs stay the same?
How does faith not develop and evolve into something more than just a belief, more than just a creed or just a strongly held opinion?
How do convictions not lead to something more, a way of living that becomes more inclusive, more humane, or more loving?
After having exercised beliefs for so long, however can they even remain fixed?
Is not the hope of possessing a Faith that it develop and mature its users over time and usage?
Or, does having a fixed belief system ensure that we must become more set in our ways, more solidified, or more firm? Is hardness the goal of faithfulness?
Is this why so often the most faith-filled become the least flexible?
It had always been my understanding that spirituality grows throughout the adventure of believing in God.
If Bible stories led me to trust that faith would develop through the ins and outs of mixed emotions, that integrity would advance and strengthen through the ups and downs of changing, and unchanging, circumstances, then why are Christians some of the most unwilling and inflexible humans to be in relationship with?
I do not believe having a fixed belief system even carries with it the opportunity to learn new things.
A fixed belief system only express a final arrival at the fullest knowledge of all things. We call this pride. And there is nothing more dangerous than a proud, arrogant human who believes they have come to understand the mind of God.
Attending church every Sunday might lead one to appear, and thus believe, one is growing.
But growth does not always represent a positive change. Sometimes we grow more rigid or more callous. Sometimes our limited understanding grows more and more narrow-minded.
Evaluating beliefs is a healthy practice for the start of a new year. Expressions of faith, hope, and love, when evolved, will lead to expanded capacities to hold them and developed abilities to represent them.
In my son’s second grade class they are learning how to not be a “brick brain”. A brick brain is someone who is unwilling to try, someone who says they can’t or they won’t.
At dinner, we talked about how being a brick brain shuts down curiosity – and curiosity is what fuels a desire to learn and develop new understandings.
In our home, the only things “fixed” are the fixtures themselves, and even those are subject to change as we mature and our styles and tastes evolve.
Within our faith, fixed is synonymous to primitive, because yesterday’s knowledge is only a sliver of tomorrow’s understanding.
FAITH desires to evolve.
HOPE dreams of burgeoning.
LOVE aspires to enlarge.
The only one who stands in their way, is you. And the only one who can unlock their ability to expand, is also you.