"Today, I go into hospital again for my regular three-weekly blood transfusion. At the start and end of each day, I always say a simple prayer. I thank God for today and his presence in it. Deep down I have this strong gut feeling that because I believe in 'today,' I know that 'today will be a good day.' I have held such faith since I was 11/12 years old when I had my first brush with the hand of destiny, and I know that the strength of my current belief will not abandon me during my remaining days.
I recall, when as a young man of twenty one out in Canada, I felt I held the whole world in my hands. I was brimming with confidence and overflowing with arrogance. I was full of faith in my capacity to succeed in whatever I tried to do. It was a wonderful time to live through and a most powerful feeling to possess. It was a bold, proud and arrogant feeling for one so young to have the prospects of an exciting life before him. It felt so good and I felt so privileged. That sense of privilege has never left me.
Once in every lifetime, each person feels the hand of destiny upon their shoulder and creates something of worth that comes alive. Be they writer, artiste, painter, potter, sculpter, stone mason, or parent to a newborn child, they know that they have been instrumental in both giving and sustaining meaningful life to some person or thing that will outlive them.
As my dear mother used to tell me as a child, 'Billy, we have two hands and they weren't meant for sitting on when there's things to do that need doing. You were given one hand to receive and the second to give.'
I know that not everyone is a believer in God and I hope that I am never viewed by any atheist or agnostic reader who follows my 'Thought for today' as being a bible-basher. I have always tried to be true to self however, and I don't mind admitting publicly that God is an important part of my life and always will be. Therefore, for me to express any of my thoughts or deeds without ever referring to his influence in my life, would be to disown him and deny myself.
I am aware that there are some who have never believed in God or any sort of spiritual being, nor ever will. I also know that there are people out there who have believed in God for some of their lives and then reached a stage when they stopped believing for one reason or another. I know that different cultures believe in different Gods and that some cultures, past and present, believe in many Gods. I also have many friends who believe in fortune telling, the planetary influence of stars in the heavens, the power of crystals, the healing of waters, the presence of spirits, the passage of ghosts and the flight of angels, along with numerous other forms of divinity, planet life and after life.
With so many beliefs in the world today about so many aspects of life and death to consider, it is only natural for any rational person to sometimes think, 'How can such a sensible person like him/her lose their marbles and place their faith in.........?'
I would simply answer such a question by saying that it matters not in polemic terms, whether or not a spiritual being such as 'God' truly exists, because even if he didn't, mankind would still have a need to invent him! Neither does it matter in polemic terms whether or not he or her, this or that has the power to do the things you believe, so long as their presence in your life serves useful purpose to it and your belief is harmless to others for you to hold.
And therein lies the crux of the matter. The nub of all our beliefs and acts of faith determine one's life and the way one chooses to live it. The simple truth is that an individual needs to believe in matter outside themselves in order to matter at all and to become a less selfish and more wholesome person. An individual needs to believe in self before they can believe in others and visa versa. We all need something or someone to believe in. This is the nature of us all, the essence which makes it either natural or unnatural for one to believe in the supernatural!
We all need a purpose to our lives in order to feel life's presence in ours. We all require guidance from time to time to help us get to where we're going. For me, without some form of spiritual direction, I would eventually feel lost and bereft of soul. Just as one person may believe in the presence of guardian angels, another will seek protection from one of many other diverse sources that offers them a sense of worth and a feeling of well being. Even the athiest and agnostic will usually believe in the value of finding a 'soul mate' in their life. If such a proposition holds truth, then in accordance with their own belief, such a person is indirectly acknowledging the presence of 'soul' in just as meaningful a way to them as other people acknowledge the presence of a 'God.'
Whenever I remind the reader of life being tenuous, especially on those occasions I enter hospital monthly, it is not because I fear I do not have long to live. It is because I am content to place my life in the hands of God as I believe that Jesus placed his in ours.
In my youth, I always having liked a flutter, and being one of life's gamblers, I know that having a stake in there being a God is simply the best each-way bet that any gambler could ever make. If a true believer is correct in their belief, when they die they will live forever. And even if such a person lives their life believing an untruth, they are still more likely to live longer and better as a consequence of their irrational belief!
When I speak as I do in today's post, it is not the use of clever and false argument I seek to make with the intention to deceive and unduly persuade; it is my soul that speaks and not sophistry! Have a good day all, I'm off for a few pints." William Forde: September 16th, 2015.