I don't talk much about my beliefs in this space. It might give the impression that they are a small, unimportant part of my life but that's not the case. In fact I think the reason I am hesitant to blog on topics pertaining to Christianity is that what I believe is such a foundational part of who I am that I don't want to bring the subject up in such a public forum unless I'm sure I can do it justice.
I'll admit that another reason is that I've begun seeing Christianity from a new perspective as an adult than I did as a kid whose world was hedged by church and Christian school; who believed everything adults told her. Unless they were, like, liberals? Who were obviously evil and trying to ruin EVERYTHING all the time, just because. I sometimes want to invent a new title and retire, "Christian," forever, because it has such negative connotations for so many people, and for good reason.
My journey from classic obedient-eldest-child, to independently thinking adult was completed when I left the state I grew up in and moved across the country (to what my loving, very conservative parents refer to as "The Left Coast."). I still struggle, when they don't coincide, to balance what I was taught with what I can see to be true. I suspect it's easier in many ways to reject the unquestionable beliefs you were taught as a child altogether, than to try and reconcile them with a world that doesn't always quite line up.
I don't know if God created the earth in seven literal days, or over seven ages of geological layers. I'm doubtful that members of proper churches will make up the majority of heaven's population. But I know in a way I can't explain logically, in a way I've known since I was very young, that there is more to the universe than chemicals and biology. I know that there is something infinitely greater than I am and that that being is good, and loves me.
In a lot of ways that knowledge forms the bedrock of my faith and who I am. I believe that Jesus is the son of God and died for me, but if you proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that Jesus was a fraud and the Bible was a collections of madmen's ramblings I would still stand on this rock. It does not require faith for me, it's something I've tried to run away from, in fact, but I never could get far because I know that there is a God (label that how you will) the way I know that my hand is my hand, or that pie tastes good. For good or ill, I can't escape what I know to be true.
That is not to say that I don't spend a certain amount of time railing at the heavens, screaming at God for answers that will not let themselves be found; begging to understand how there could possibly be any redemption in some of the things that happen in this world...