Belief in God has been a constant throughout my career. As I look back over the decades, there have been very few constants, companies came and went, bosses came and went, etc. Products which had been on the bleeding edge of technology rapidly became passé.
One of the constants was that my desk space, be it in the middle of a desk-farm, or if was in a cube, cube farm, or a carpeted office was mine. It was here that I could be free of most of the “PC” things that firms demanded of me. If you came into my office, you were in my territory, and I did not have to make accommodations for you. If you were uncomfortable there, we could arrange to meet elsewhere.
My office, cube or desk space could be used to display things of interest or importance to me. A crucifix, pictures of my wife, a bible, concordance, as well as a catechism, were prominently on display and within easy reach for ready reference.
Given that my career had nearly always concerned itself with hardware reliability ( computers, missiles, bombing platforms, space vehicles and what felt as hundreds of other products ), the sign on display on the outside wall simply read, “In God we trust, all others must bring data.”
Data had always been quite important. Reliability predictions could not be made with any sort of precision unless there were massive piles of supporting, tangible, empirical data.
There is No Empirical Data
So, with this article, I find that I am left to consider feelings, reactions and perceptions, and where the safety of massive amounts of data are not available. Where empirical data are unavailable, we turn to simple observations.
It has been my observation that during those moments of quiet, when my mind is most at rest, those thoughts which I may recall when returning to a more present state seem to reflect those things which are important at the time.
As an example, if when reflecting on the thoughts I had experienced during a meditation session, if I find that my thoughts had been playing with the color of a new truck I may wish to purchase, the point may be made that the truck was the most important thing on or in my mind.
During moments of quiet when walking the dog, or simply strolling through the neighborhood, if you find that your thoughts turn to trying to see how you may help a child prep for a driver’s test, then, guess what is most important to you.
I would suggest to you that for the next few days, as you empty your mind and enter a relaxed and slower paced life, pay attention to your thoughts.
How often do your thoughts turn to the Creator of the Universe, His Son, the Holy Spirit? How frequently, if ever, do you find yourself in prayer?
If you do happen to find yourself in prayer, what sort of prayer is it? Do you use the time to plead your case for a specific item or want?
Frequently when I find myself in an unplanned, relaxed, prayerful frame of mind, I find that I am, or have been, in a prayer of thanksgiving. Most of us have accumulated a great number of things for which we should express thanks to the Giver of all.
Things For Which We Should Be Grateful
While walking the dog, one of the items which may be on the list of items for which we may wish to express thanksgiving include the ability to be ambulatory – not paralyzed, not in a body cast, not chair bound, but able to walk and take in the beauty which surrounds us. This may be followed by a quick prayer that He continue to be attentive to those who at this time cannot walk their streets.
Closely related to this ability to walk would be the general state of health which allows us to walk around the neighborhood without having to stop every few feet to catch our breath. On the state of our health is a thank you for the health of our spouse, children and parents who are free from major diseases, who had never experienced a broken bone, and who can be and do all that they wish.
Walking along a path near a wooded area, alongside a stream, there is the opportunity for a great deal of thanksgiving and gratitude. The beauty which surrounds us, the ability to hear the birds in the trees or the laughter of the stream as it cascades over the rocks or other obstacles in its path.
Returning home, there is the home itself for which we may wish to give thanks. It may not be the largest on the street, it may not have the greatest curb appeal, it may need to have a lawn mower visit it rather soon, but, it is the base of operations from which our familial, social, civic or societal lives reach out to touch others.
On a highly personal level, one of the items which remains close to the top of my list of things for which I am thankful is my recovery from a series of addictions nicotine, and, and, and while He has not yet opened the gates of Heaven to let me in, He has facilitated my recovery and opened the gates of Hell to let me out.
Belief: Saying ‘Thanks’
The heading above may be regarded as a simple fact and no supporting data are required. When you leave a gratuity to a member of the wait staff, you are saying ‘Thanks’ since you believe you have received good service.
To paraphrase 1 Peter 3:15 just a bit, the verse reads, “Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope”, however, it may be easily changed to “Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your belief.”
Belief in God the Creator of the Universe, His Son, and the Spirit which binds them is quite easy to explain. In the 1950’s Frankie Lane recorded a song which clearly presents reasons for our belief. The title of the song was “I Believe” and it presents some of the simple reasons I believe and for which I give thanks to the Trinity frequently as I go through my daily life, a bit of the lyrics follows:
“I believe above the storm the smallest prayer
Will still be heard
I believe that someone in the great somewhere
Hears every word
Every time I hear a newborn baby cry
Or touch a leaf
Or see the sky
Then I know why I believe.”