May You Stay Forever Young

By Kati Heng

I go to a small, Christian liberal arts college, and it’s been shooting bullets in my faith. Here’s the thing: I’ve had a child-like faith for years, and all these college Theology classes, Biblical Studies, and even chapel services and discussions are doing everything they can to make my faith “grow up.”

Don’t get me wrong: Learn about your faith. Read and study the Bible. Get new perspectives on what The Word says. These things are important. But at the end of the day, I challenge you to have the faith of the child. Here’s a few ways to renew your inner kid’s faith:

K. I. S. S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid)

I heard this saying on NBC’s “The Office” from Dwight Schrute (“Great advice, hurts my feelings every time”), but since then, has been one of my mottos in theological debates. Truth is, I don’t care whether your church baptizes its members at birth, as teenagers, or at age 50. I don’t care if they serve communion every week, every month, or three times a year. I don’t even care if predestination or purgatory are real or not. At some point, we’re never going to know the answers and may as well agree to disagree on what is right, wrong, or fiction. Although this attitude made arguing positions in theology class difficult, it’s nothing compared to the benefits of listening to, rather than disagreeing with other Christians.

Be Curious

When my cousin was younger, he was that kid that asked every question. “Why is that blue?” “Why are his shoes so big?” “Is she pregnant or just fat?” “How does a vacuum work?” “How do you make a hammer?” Yeah, it was exasperating at times (especially that week in which he asked every woman if she was pregnant), but I loved that kid’s curiosity. What if we had some of that same curiosity about God? What is God’s favorite color (maybe blue like the ocean? Or the green of the grass?) How many languages does God know? Where does God keep the recipe for manna? Do you think everyone lives in a penthouse in Heaven, or do we sleep in fields of chrysanthemums? Stay curious about God in the whimsical way of a kid.

Believe

I used to be the most trusting thing alive. When I was little, my grandpa played that “I got your nose!” game, and I believed him and cried and screamed until he put my nose back on and carried me over to the mirror to show me it still fit right and looked beautiful. In high school, I believed it every time a boy said he loved me, even if we’d only been dating a week or two. At twenty-one, I’ve become cynical. I have trouble trusting people to tell me the truth or be there when I really need them. Having belief in God is hard. Faith is hard. If it was easy, we’d call it investing. But it’s worth it. After all, if you can’t believe in God, what else is worth believing in?

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