Pondering The Big Questions

I remember climbing into the back of my dad’s Galaxy 500 after CCD class with my sister. He was there waiting to pick us up. The car was filled with cigarette smoke, and sports talk radio was yammering away.

“Dad, why do Christians honor a man who was Jewish?”

He turned the radio down. “You’ll have to ask your mother when you get home.”

I recall that her answer was not a whole lot more informed than his.

Sadly, as years have passed, most of my peers told a similar story. They had pretty much a storybook relationship with the church. They were clear about Christmas and Easter, but the rest was kind of lost.

The funny thing was, everybody had some level of reverence or fear about their faith, but it was always uninformed and typically mired in the views of their grandparents. There were — and I am finding, still are — a lot of unanswered questions.

Well, folks, I am certainly not about to heap old-time religion on you, because that is a very personal decision. But I sure do recommend reopening your mind to that which you are not clear about.

Here’s why: If your kids wind up having the same questions and all you have is the same answers your folks had, this lousy interpretation will just continue to spiral out of focus.

And I have to admit I don’t feel this is a time in our nation’s history when any of us should be without the belief in something greater than ourselves. I mean, it really appears some days that we “mortals” are messing things up left and right.

Our “entitlements” seem to be crashing head first into our former priorities and something our forefathers used to call “our God-given rights.” I think maybe everyone should get a better grip on where we all really stand with the powers that really matter.

Get informed. Do some research and find a way to fill that void in your life that can only come through the unselfish acts of caring for your neighbor and being kind to others.

I happen to be a Christian and have found answers in that faith by employing a detailed walk through the Old Testament and much of the New. I went to a variety of church services, men’s discussion groups, church-related charity events, and things such as this.

When it was all said and done, my faith came to rest in a combination of what I was raised with and what I came to learn about it. The strict Catholic faith had too much pomp and ceremony for me. The Pentecostal born-again Christians were sometimes a little too over the top for me.

I found a nice middle of the road between the two and am very happy there. I have answers for things now that formerly just sat idle in my mind.

You may find a totally different path, but whatever it is, it should be something that you can lean on in good times and bad.

Think about how much research you did when you got your first air conditioner or big-screen TV. Shouldn’t you at least put in that much time with forever after? If the last time you looked into it all you remember is fighting your mom to NOT go to church, I think you’re selling yourself short.

Ron Ciancutti is the Purchasing Manager for Cleveland Metroparks. He is not on Facebook, but he can be reached at rdc@clevelandmetroparks.com.

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