The question…

While we were talking, I was recently asked by a co-worker and friend after she had read my last post, Faces, “Do you believe in God?”

My answer came as quickly as she asked it… “Absolutely… Don’t you?” I asked, but already knew what her answer would be just by the way she asked it.

“I’m an atheist, but truly believe in a ‘higher’ power”.

I’m not a very “quick thinking” guy when it comes to words while being put on the spot, my words come more naturally to me when I get the chance to sit down and write them out.

It wasn’t until after our conversation that I thought of what I wished I would have said.

“How can you not?” is simple as it sounds.

“How can you not believe in God? Look at the beauty that is out in this world and ‘how can you not’ believe”?

But then the more I thought about it, I realized some pretty tough things about the statement I wished I would have said.

Beauty yes… but what about all the hate? The state of the world that we see before we go to bed, only to realize that ‘Yes’ things can get worse when we wake up and turn on the tv, or read our news feeds on whatever social media site you prefer getting your updates on. Things aren’t really looking good out there. In fact, most of them are flat-out terrifying.

With all of these hatred acts and atrocities that happen on a daily basis, I can understand the reasoning behind her answer, but I still do not agree. I’m not even exactly sure what her reasoning’s are. I just know I don’t feel the same.

But I do have one question…

“Why are we letting the hatred of humans destroy the beauty of what God created?”

And by that I don’t mean structures, or building, or artifacts etc…  I’m talking about the welfare of people, the simple words of ‘live and let live’ and so much more.

Are we as a society so overtaken by the bad that we forget to shout out and proclaim the good?

While we were watching the news last night, everything they reported on was about cars being driven into crowds, racist protesters, murders, the state of the White House etc… And then during the last few minutes, they showed an uplifting story of the day.

Why are we so focused on all of this bad and hatred? Why are we devoting so little time to the good stories of the world? The incredible stories of human interactions and marvelous natural wonders there are out there to see?

And God. Where is he? Why are we so afraid to bring God into the conversation?

Well, he is everywhere.

Sadly, most of the time his name is in the middle of all of this hate because others find that their views on him, or their interpretations of his word superior to the rest of us.

Are those beliefs so great that we must hurt one another to prove superiority?

A question that has been asked since the beginning of time.

I am in no way a religious scholar or current world events expert, but I truly believe that a majority of the world is full of peace and love. We just let the opposite overshadow and give too much attention where it is not due.

What would happen if we stopped reporting on all of this bad stuff and hate that goes on in this world, and only turned our eyes in the direction of the good, the blessings that people have, all of the ‘wins’ of the day.

Honestly, probably nothing, but it wouldn’t give those who do these deeds of hatred a world platform to shout from.

Evil would still be there, the sad stories would still be told and the righteous would still believe themselves to be more privileged than the rest of us.

I believe that there is so much beauty and good in this world that if we try to focus more and more on those things, the people who need it the most will start to see the beauty and wonder of who God really is and what his true message means, rather than the hate and hurt we tend to see most.

I’m in no way saying that turning a blind eye would solve anything, I’m merely thinking that a change of view about the rest of the world and those who inhabit it might do a little good.

God is everywhere. God is everything.

God does not hate.

No matter who your god is, he most certainly does not hate.

I have been lucky enough to travel this world, to more places than I had ever dreamed I would, and I am lucky enough to say that I have many more places to go.

When I step off the plane in a foreign country, am I there to push my God unto others because I believe my God is better than theirs? Am I there to pass judgement on how they live, what they look like or how they praise and worship their god?

No.

I’m simply there to see and take in the world. Breathe in the air that is around me and have my eyes opened to things I’ve only read and dreamt about. The world is my church and all the people on it are God’s creations.

And what a beautiful sanctuary it is…

Do I believe in God?

again… “Absolutely”

Take a look around you and if at first you don’t see him, that’s okay. Just open your eyes and he will show himself, It’s just up to you if you want to see him.

Do you believe differently than your neighbor? That’s okay. We were told to love thy neighbor. Even if your beliefs and scriptures differ, it’s still not a bad rule to live by.

Open your eyes to the wonders around you, for they are beautiful and plenty. You don’t have to cross oceans to see them, you must simply open your eyes.

Since this is a photography blog, I can’t post anything without some pictures attached, so here are a few photos of places we have been that have brought wonder to my heart, and shown me that yes, I believe in God.

First off is this.

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Driving through the Swiss Alps and seeing the natural beauty of these mountains is breathtaking.

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Running into fog on the drive through was extra special, your imagination got to create the unseen mountainside.

Or  the view from the top of the Eiffel Tower with my Dad.

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And then having a wonderful meal with him and Paul,

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on the grounds of this magnificent castle in Poland.

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And being able to snap this picture of Majorca on your way to enjoy its beaches for a week in the sun.

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And then there are the quieter times of visiting the local zoo with these two…

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to see animals like this.

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And then kicking back as a family enjoying some game action!

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And then to the other end of the spectrum, total chaos in a totally unknown land…

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only to have a the best banana in your life from a local farm, freshly picked that day…

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To crossing oceans

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to get the chance to see friends lending helping hands…

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or just trying to score an extra piece of dessert!

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Seeing the eyes of a gentle giant…

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to the face of a child in the middle of a busy intersection.

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And the list would go on and on.

So do I believe in God?

“Yes, yes I do.”

 

 

 

 

12 thoughts on “The question…

  • Wow!! Well said son. I also think the picture you chose to put on FB was so appropriate for your words. The storms of life often leave people searching for co fort and hope, God is no stranger to the cries of his creation, as time and ti e again hatred a d violence have seeped it’s ugly head into humanity, lots of people wonder where the heck he is during times like we find ourselves in today. Does God exist, like you mentioned, during times of sitting in that boat the bible talks about while the water all arpund us throws us to and fro? God is. While Jesus was off alone to pray his diciples then, and those of us today, become fearful with all the violence we see right before our very eyes. Jesus tells “do not be afraid, for I am with you”. God calms the waters in the voices of that mother whose daughter was recently killed, by saying “we will make my daughters life count”. Hundreds of people came to her daughters vigil with belief in a God who heals and watches over them and was right there among them all. This side of heaven is full of violence, yet “blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called children of God”. It is hard to be a King’s kid, but yes, yes we your family believe as well!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  • Awesome post! Definitely a good reminder of what makes this world such a beautiful place; even through all of the hatred and darkness. Definitely enjoyed reading how you interpret the news stories presented to us via T.V. and such. It’s so sad that the negative forces of the world are what we as a society have chosen to focus on. I especially agree with you on terms of God. God is real, no matter what anyone says. Once you open your eyes, like you said in your post, you begin to see everything around us that makes life so amazing and unique here in our world. Glad to have stumbled upon your post guys! Great perspective on life and what the world is truly all about at the end of the day. Too many people forget what’s important in life, this was definitely a nice way to remind some people of that fact :).

    Liked by 1 person

    • I can’t begin to thank you enough for your kind words, they truly mean the world to me. The world is sure a magical and wondrous place, and for those who choose to see that, are a blessing to us all. Thank you once more:).

      Liked by 1 person

      • Likewise brother :)! At the end of the day, all that matters is our happiness and the happiness of our loved ones :)! Of course life has it’s ups and downs, but that’s what makes it such an adventure. It’s great to be alive, I just wish more people could appreciate the natural world a little more. I notice a lot of my university mates are constantly on their phones, or talking about insignificant things that really don’t matter. Anyways I’m going on another tangent lol. Glad to have found your blog amongst the wide-expanse of the blogosphere :)! Peace to all.

        Like

      • Oh wow, thank you man! I know it might be a year or 2 before I can release it out to the world. So for right now, I’ll just continue to blog about different topics and continue to meet more people on WordPress’s network :)! I’m looking forward to the day I get to release Book I of this series I’ve been working on for such a long time now; alongside other side writing projects, but that’ll be for later on hopefully lol :).

        Liked by 1 person

      • Awesome! This totally made my day! I’ll definitely try and network as fast as I can. I’ll try and be patient though, but I can’t wait for this process to be over with lol.

        Liked by 1 person

  • “I bring you to these far away places because you see me in them.” Words He spoke to me. His glory is all over the place. We are quick to blame Him when all goes wrong and quick to ignore Him when all goes right. But if we switch those around to give Him praise in the right and ask for help in the wrong, He now has a platform to be the God of love on all sides.
    How we as humans have tried to take it into our own hands and have messed it up. It’s time for a perception change.
    I’m with you brother, I see Him all over the place. If one is looking for a neon sign, they’re there. No amount of “proof” will be enough when a mind is made up.
    Press forward into unknown beauty my friend that only a God of wonder could have made. Thanks for sharing your posts. I look forward to more! Love you guys!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • And we love you right back! We sure do miss you, and can’t wait to see all the adventures that are in all of our futures! I love your comments to this post… My Mom and sister just went and saw Amy Grant in Eau Claire and said she was just amazing. She had some very wise things to say… One of my favorites (that I heard about) was “We need to observe to understand, not to judge”. Those words rang true to me, espesually when traveling to these wonderful places that God himself created. Humanity is, like you said, always to quick to place the blame on him when things go wrong, or when we see things that are not to our own beliefs or just plain different in our eyes. These are the things that really make me see “him”, and boy what a great world it is… I love you my dear friend and we must connect soon! Maybe when you get back from your AH-mazing trip to AFRICA!!! HUGS 🙂

      Like

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