Oh, ya'll, please go read this post by Elizabeth Esther.
First let me say, nobody in my Presbyterian church is making jokes about Catholicism (not to me, anyway). But in many ways, our house has been having the exact same conversation she is describing in hers. Because while I am finding beauty and meaning in the practices of the Catholic Church, Brian is reading Jonathon Edwards and John Piper. Seriously. He is growing in Reformed thinking, while I am being exposed to Catholicism. And it led to a conversation about assurance of salvation (or redemption, if you're Catholic) over the ironing board this morning, and Peter's question: "Who then can be saved?" with Christ's response, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."
I am learning how wide the Kingdom is, and ancient. How Western Reformers place (too much, in my opinion) emphasis on reason and intellect, instead of the experience of denying yourself and taking up your cross. How did we get away from that? Most of all I am beginning to understand what was lost in the Reformation. What was gained, to be sure, but also what was lost. The Church is as big and complex as humanity itself.
And yet, when I called Mikkee to say all of this to her, she said, "Stephanie, you're talking about people trying to understand God." Which made me laugh, because she's right, of course. If I can't make sense of it, it is only because I am finite, trying to interact with an Infinite Creator, hoping to resolve centuries-old debates.
And the beauty of God - the breathtaking reality of His nature - is that while there is so much complexity, so many layers, the crux of our faith is so simple. Over and again, Jesus said to the sick, the mourning, the forgotten, "Your faith has made you well." It really is as simple as that.
Thanks be to God.