Buffered by Faith

I was recently talking to a couple who immigrated here from Eastern Europe.  They came to this city and are staying with people from the same church as a missionary couple they are friends with.  Since their arrival, the church and its people have bent over backwards and twisted inside out to accommodate them.
They have a free place to stay.  A woman who devotes her entire day to drive them to appointments and their 4 children to their various schools.  People are giving them nice fur coats and inviting them into their homes.  They speak about this couple with shining eyes and pray that they will be a blessing to them.  Most of the comments about them are a gushing “Aren’t they nIce?”.

Yeah, they better be.  Most immigrants have a rough go.  I’m glad they are being taken care of so well, but a bit annoyed that the Ivory Coast refugees who had weaker church connections weren’t also given the red carpet.  This new couple have both worked at prestigious jobs in their home country: law, film, bible school director, and their English is quite good.  They have a lot going for them.

Plus, they have faith.  I asked what sort of work they hoped to do here.  They had no idea, but were sure something divine would come up.  It was easy to see that their faith had helped give them the courage to move to a different climate and culture.  God’s will was clear- they had confidence.

I was wondering why I couldn’t have that sort of confidence when it came to chasing after my dreams.  My husband pointed out that I had never assumed that my wants were automatically God’s wants.  If I had, I would be behaving the same as this couple.  They wanted to do something and felt assured that God would grant them success and went running ahead.  I wanted to do something but was afraid that it wasn’t God’s will so it paralyzed me.   I was well aware that my thoughts came from my head.  This was why I couldn’t prophesy.

Oh well.  I hope this couple’s faith helps get them into good jobs.  Then, I hope they start thinking before their faith can hurt any of their children’s dreams.

If you had faith, was it the kind that allowed you to chase your dreams or the kind that made you question yourself and your abilities?

4 thoughts on “Buffered by Faith

  1. Ahab says:

    First, I was stunned that this Eastern European couple migrated to the U.S. without any jobs waiting for them, or any real plan. If they hadn’t had a church safety net to take care of them upon arrival, they’d be in a VERY chaotic situation right now. What is it about faith that makes people throw common sense out the window?

    Second, the fact that the Ivory Coast refugees weren’t treated as well made me angry. Who would be more deserving of Christian kindness than refugees from a conflict zone? I desperately want to believe that this was ignorance rather than partiality — did the church know about their plight?

    “If you had faith, was it the kind that allowed you to chase your dreams or the kind that made you question yourself and your abilities?”

    When I was Catholic, the latter was in play. Religion blinded me to my potential, prevented me from thinking about practical aspects of my future, and imposed all sorts of suffocating, arbitrary restrictions on me. Dreams didn’t have much room to breathe. I don’t miss faith at all.

  2. prairienymph says:

    We’re in Canada, and in a city that has very low unemployment so it isn’t as risky a venture as it would otherwise be. But immigration is still chaotic.
    The Ivory Coast refugees were treated well, just not as well and that does bug me too. I think part of it was that they weren’t as involved in our church. Its understandable to take care of your tribe first. Single moms have a harder time already without being in a new country. Maybe I’m just annoyed because I have met other immigrants who also had more difficult circumstances. Maybe I should just be grateful that this family is receiving good help.
    I’m really hoping that some of the current helpers use their newly discovered ‘gifts’ in immigrant societies. That would be fantastic.

    I don’t remember when you grew out of your faith. Have you regained your dreams?

  3. TWF says:

    I never had that kind of faith. My spiritual upbringing was more bland, for sure. There wasn’t a whole lot of talk about God doing this in that person or another. And with this life being barely more than a pit-stop on the way to eternal happiness, I didn’t really have dreams of doing anything in the faith. In fact, I wasn’t motivated to dream much at all about this life.

    On the other hand, I had prayed for God to use me how He saw fit to use me, so I spent some time waiting for a clear message from Him. Similar to you, I was very nervous that my will would be projected in my head as God’s, and so I was fearfully skeptical of almost any “pious” impulse. I was waiting for a sign of certainty, a sign of God’s seal of approval, but I never got one.

  4. Ahab says:

    To answer your question, I lost my faith at age 14 and never looked back. My dreams have much more room to breath, and I’ve living many of them.

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