The Gift of Faith: A Christian Perspective

Wind, Earthquake, Fire, Silence

The Gift of Faith:  A Christian Perspective
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About the Author

Reverend Dr. Morar Murray-Hayes

Reverend Dr. Morar Murray-Hayes

The Reverend Dr. Morar Murray-Hayes is the Minister of Maple Grove United Church, and is a member of the Interfaith Councill of Halton. A chatty extrovert with a conversational preaching style, a multi-tasker who is a “multi-worrier” when it comes to caring about people’s problems, and a leader who treasures teaming with the lay people in her church, Morar says that at Maple Grove she has experienced “a deeper level of ministry than I thought possible.” Anyone who has personally received Morar’s deeply compassionate caring and wise counsel will testify to what an inspirational, healing and encouraging ministry it is.

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Often we think of faith as something we individually have or don’t have; something we own or possess as an act of our own will.  But what we discover when we experience baptism is that Christ wraps himself around us like a cloak, or shawl.  And it is God’s grace in Christ that gives us faith, Christ’s faith, as a gift.

So how do we clothe our children with Christ?  For that matter, how do we clothe ourselves with Christ?

At a troubled time in the history of Israel, when Elijah the prophet despaired for the people who had broken the covenant and killed the prophets until he alone was left, Elijah cried out before God, and God answered:

“Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence.” (Elijah 19.11-12)

Where is God?

God is not in the wind, God is not in the earthquake; God is not in the fire; God is in the silence.  It is then that Elijah finds himself able to speak to God, and it is then that God tells him to get on with his vocation, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus; when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael as King over Aram.” (I Kings 19.15)

Listen for God in the silence.

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