Monday, January 16, 2006

In the Name of the Father...

When he was a newborn, I used to hold my son and marvel at the tiny miracle he was. It was hard to believe I had played a role in bringing something innocent and perfect and beautiful into the world. Whether it was hormonally-induced or not I don't know, but I would sometimes find myself so overcome with love for him and joy at his being that I could do nothing but hold him, stare at his beautiful blue eyes, and cry.

In those moments, I found myself praying, "Thank you, Lord, for this gift. Thank you for trusting me with this tiny, perfect soul. I pray that you will give me the strength, the wisdom, and the grace to be worthy of this child's love." Holding Brendan, I truly felt God's presence. Back then, in addition to these spontaneous prayers, I found I could indulge my spirit easily, writing when my son napped. Praying and practicing a few meditations before he woke in the mornings. Reading this or that book on parenting, or motherhood, or just a simple, good work of fiction when I got the chance. All of those contributed to my spiritual well-being.

Now that Brendan is older, it is, of course, harder. Daily life leads little time to express my thanksgiving, though, I do find myself constantly asking for help. Not something to be dismissed, but not an entirely joyful experience. In addition to my own spiritual longings, I find that I feel increasingly responsible for teaching him about God and I have a growing longing to see my son have a meaningful connection to God, be it through Nature, Art/Creation, or the Church, or as I have experienced God through all those things.

Thankfully, I do believe that God knows us and the longings of our hearts. Even though I may feel spiritually disconnected and sense the lack in my life, I know that when things do settle down as Brendan gets older, I will be able to once again indulge my spirit with the things that truly matter to my soul. Until then, I will go through the motions of mealtime blessings, holiday rituals, going to Church, praying in a truly, deeply meaningful way whenever I can, weeping at a perfect sunset, and freezing to death so I can glimpse the silvery moon on a crystal clear January night. Hopefully, Brendan will pick up on the fact that these things, as ordinary as they seem, do matter and are a way to bridge the gap between the seen and unseen, the mundane and the Divine.

And I will continue to seek God's divine presence in my son and in myself every time I look at his beautiful face.


Alan said...

We can only hope that your son will accept reason over fairy tales and not become a nasty Christian commenter on others blogs as you are. You could at least actually read a post before you comment on it. You obviously were either too annoyed at the idea of an atheist blog or just too busy to read the whole post or any of the other posts on my blog.

I won't waist any more time replying here but I will reply to your post on my blog. I welcome reasonable responses on my blog from believers. Whether you realize it or not, your response came accross as a holy-warrior rant from a fundaMentalist. Perhaps you are a fundaMentalist and this would explain it, but just wanted to let you know how you were being perceived.

dawn said...


Can't we all just get along?

I have no problem with someone being an Atheist if he or she so chooses. I do have a problem with someone saying, "I'm not attacking all Christians," and then proceeding to do just that.

All I said was that you should comment on the individual who has wronged you, not every Christian. All Christians are not liars. I didn't think my comments to you were especially nasty, though I did think your post was hate-filled.

I don't think everyone should believe as I do. Everyone is entitled to believe or disbelieve whatever he she wants to as far as I am concerned. But I do find it discouraging that while Atheists (generally speaking, of course) want to be free not to believe, they seem intent on making it more difficult for anyone else who chooses to worship a god to do so. They seem especially to love attacking Christians, but don't seem to hold the same ire for Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, or those of other faiths. Of course, that's just my experience.

You seem a little defensive and I am sorry if I offended you or touched a nerve. I was just trying to let you know how your post was perceived.