Thursday, May 12, 2011

The Man Above

I remember my first days attending mass when I was a little girl. Sitting in the "baby room" part of mass and messing around with what I thought were just books. I refused to stand when everyone stood and I refused to kneel when everyone knelt. We went every Sunday until my ba ngoai (grandma on mom's side) had her first stroke. After her stroke my mom felt that we couldn't leave my ba ngoai home because something might happen again.

My ba ngoai plays an important role in religion in my life. My parents were never the extreme religious types. My mom grew up a Catholic, but she never taught us to pray every night or forced us to give thanks before meals. And even though it has never been confirmed I'm almost positive my dad is only a Catholic because he had to convert in order to marry my mom. But little things he does and says shows hints of faith.

One day my dad and I were in our living room and we were talking about something which wasn't important otherwise I would've remembered, but it led to me dad pointing at our Virgin Mary statue we have in our living room and he says "That statue is very lucky." After he said that I felt angry. Angry because "that statue" wasn't just a statue, and because we're not supposed to believe in luck, instead we are blessed. I kept thinking about what he said, and even debated about correcting him but then it came to me. I thought in my head "God loves everyone even the ones who don't believe in him. And even though our Virgin Mary statue wasn't just any statue at least what he said showed a hint of faith. Faith that the Virgin Mary and God has given us many blessings (or in my dad's words luck) in life."

I wasn't always this religious or I didn't always have this much faith in God though. My ba ngoai was the first person to teach me how to pray. She taught me a lot of things (and I'll make a separate post for her one day because she deserves it), but praying definitely has helped me gain faith in God. I prayed when I woke up, before I ate, and before I went to bed. I didn't keep the habit for long though. I guess with my family not going to church and me not praying because my grandma was too sick to remind had me lose the faith I had.

Then I learned about science in middle and the first two years of high school. Biology really had me questioning my faith. My family had raised me and my siblings as Catholics, but it was very apparent to everyone how anti-Catholic my brother was. And my parents never enforced the religion and belief on him, they really valued our independent beliefs even if it was going against God. I was I guess you could say an atheist for awhile too, until my mom asked me to start attending Sunday School at our Vietnamese parish in North Minneapolis. I didn't want to do it for awhile and dreaded it, but I guess after awhile it was kind of a social thing to go. All of the "cool" kids was seen at our church, and I got the benefit of picking a new restaurant every sunday and trying it w/my mom and sister after Mass and Sunday School.

All in all even though I've gotten my faith back within the past five years, I have never ever felt as close to God as I do now or recently. Instead of just seeing little details as it's own, I've been putting the details of my life together and they all fit like a puzzle. They all have worked out to the way it should have and as crazy as it may sound to many of you I believe God has helped me and has blessed in countless and unbelievable ways. I can sit here and list out everything and how they go hand in hand to get me to exactly where I am now, but I won't. Just know that things happen for a reason, and it'll all be good in the end. If it's not good it's not the end.

I may not be the best Catholic (I sin even though I know better not to and I don't attend mass every week or rarely at all) and I may not agree w/everything that I SHOULD believe in w/the Catholic religion, but like my dad I have faith. Even with all of this new science stuff or illuminati conspiracy theories and blah blah blah that could make the agrument of God's existence false, but despite all of that I still believe in him because of my experiences.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

No comments: