The unMiracle of Faith

ist2_2727787-i-don-t-knowI pity the victims of a miracle.  (Please note the noun, “victim.”)  Their Sundays mornings are now freed from the burden of Sunday worship.  They can jump immediately to the donuts and coffee without the worship.  The rest of us schmucks (good Yiddish word) have to plot and ploy our way through life including our Sunday morning duty.

Because you see, victims of a miracle don’t need faith.  They’ve witnessed a miracle of some sort and now the struggling, exploring, wonderings and wanderings of the rest of us are all behind them now.  They need no faith because faith can only be defined as trusting in the unknown with as much of a knowing heart as we can muster.

Rosary turn to gold in a former Communist country?  I’d sell it on Ebay faster than they can tell their neighbor about the miraculous transformation.  You pray to God for you son’s remission from cancer and he survives so what other conclusion can you reach than you are now a victim unlike the rest of us who continue the pondering the unknown with a knowing heart.

I define “faith” as not what you know but in what you know that you do not know.  There’s a lot of trust built into that statement.  So, you knowingly don’t know.

I wouldn’t pray for a son’s recovery because if he died then I’d still be free from Sunday worship because God did not answer my plea.  If the son lives, then I’ve become a victim of faithlessness.

My prayers are never rooted in things or people but in virtues.  God’s a busy guy so my prayer is always a simple one for those hooks of perseverance, strength, wisdom, guidance, fortitude, patience and trust.

You could call my prayer a safeguard or cop-out because of the lack of praying for things or people.  If the son dies or lives it doesn’t matter to my prayer because my prayer has been about what dealing with whatever happens.

I don’t want to be a victim.  I want to continue wondering the rest of my life with what I don’t know but want to know or what I can’t know but place in God’s providence.  I hope the son doesn’t die, my rosary is fine the color that it is.  I don’t need problems solved or simple answers in my life – those imposed on me or those I’ve imposed on myself – but I do need virtues from an attentive and listening God to see me through this whole journey we call life.

About Rev. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.

A Roman Catholic priest since 1980 and a member of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians). Six books on the Catholic church and U.S. culture are available on
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