beliefs?

One of the things I’ve had to do recently is decide what it is I believe. What do I believe about God? Creation? Education? Taxes? Government? What are my beliefs with regard to families and their structure? What do I believe about freedom? What’s right in my mind? Why is it right? Could I be wrong? And do I really want my “friends” to know what I believe. The last one is the hardest. I know for a fact that I disagree with some of the people that I interact with almost daily. What do I do? I avoid the subject of the disagreement. Especially when it comes to politics. Those who know me well know that I’m highly conservative in my leanings. Am I outspoken? No. Should I be? Good question.
Some things are easy to believe. God? That’s the easiest. Just look around or learn a little bit of science. There is no way our world could be as diverse as it is with things working so well together for there not to be a god. Look at the tiniest atom and then look at the largest galaxy. How could it all happen by chance? Big Bang? What did it start from? Nothing? Where did that come from? What was the beginning? What came before that? You see, God is the simplest of answers not the hardest. God doesn’t conflict with science, science merely shows us what God did, little by little. Science is the study of learning how God works.

So what do I believe?  I believe that God loves us and wants us to love each other as we love ourselves.  I believe that people do wrong things, and that sometimes it’s really hard to do what’s right.  I believe that most people really do know what is the right thing to do.

There are some really tough questions out there.  Like, get an abortion?  Some can answer that question with ease, absolutely not.  Others may ask: how old is the mother?  will she actually survive giving birth?  will the baby live after being born?  is the baby really a baby yet?  does it matter?  Abortion is one of those things that it’s good to know what you believe before the question comes up.  Another tough question is:  do you provide medical treatment to someone who’s dying anyway?  Palliative care?  What about the young possibly healthy child?  Does it matter the age of the patient?  What about on the battle field?  Do you risk your life to rescue another who will die anyway?  What about assisted suicide?  What about the horrid, hopefully never happens, question of rescuing one of two children?  Who do you choose?  All tough questions.  Sometimes there is a right and a wrong answer and sometimes there’s no right answer available.  You can’t abstain, you can’t not rescue either child because of not being able to rescue both.  You make a judgement call and you do your best.  You may have made a different decision at a different time but you just do your best with the information that you have.  And forgive yourself afterward.

So what do you believe?  It’s not as easy a question as you may think.  I pray you choose what you know is right and that you learn to tell the difference.   May God help us both.

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Driving

I am now the proud mother of a teenage driver.  The past year that we have spent helping her to better her driving skills has been interesting.  She turned 16 and I’m now happy to let her drive alone.  Why?  How can I stand letting her drive by herself, away from me?  It’s not as hard as I thought it would be.  We’ve been busy for a long time with this whole driving thing.

Years ago, she would sit in her dad’s lap and steer the car.  When she out grew Dad’s lap she’d be allowed to drive the last block to the house.  (We live out in the country.)  As soon as she was old enough to get her permit and start driving legally, with an adult in the car, she drove.  The rule was, “if you’re in the car with me, you drive.”  This meant that she drove over an hour several days a week.  This was rain or shine, day or night, almost no exceptions.  She drove to and from dance, to and from the store, to and from the homeschool  COOP.  She drove in the snow, and in storms too.  My philosophy was for her to have every possible chance to mess up before she went out on her own.  So when it came time to give up riding with her, I knew she would be ok.

What was I like as a passenger?  I had to learn to tell her what she was needing to correct in a language that she understood.  This meant I couldn’t yell.  I couldn’t freak out or lose my temper.  If she was going to remain calm, I had to remain calm.  As the year progressed I quit talking.  I’d merely suggest something if it seemed necessary.  Something softly spoken, like, “watch your speed,” or “you’re riding too close,” or “the road looks slippery”.  Most of the time these small suggestions did all that was necessary.  Yes there have been times when my right foot went to the brake and found nothing but air.  There have been times when I nearly crawled out of my seat trying to back away from the windshield.  But mostly, there were times when she’d ask me where to park, and I’d make her choose.  Or times when we were going somewhere she knew and I wouldn’t give her directions.

I’m very proud of my baby girl, who is most definitely not a baby any more.  I trust she’ll make mostly right decisions, and I pray for her safety every time she goes somewhere.  I count the seconds for her to check back in and tell me she got there safely.  But she doesn’t have to know all of that.  What she needs to know is that I love her.  (And I’m glad she’s driving, not me.)