‘Three score years and ten.’ Yes, I’ve recently had my 70th birthday. It’s a good time, I reckon, for assessing my life, my values and my intentions.
Doing so, I find myself coming back to the statement in Hebrews 11:6 that ‘Anyone who comes to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.’ That’s where I continue to take my stand, with deep satisfaction.
The theologian Paul Ricoeur wrote about a phase of the Christian life that he called the ‘second naivety’. When you first become a Christian, you are pretty naïve, taking everything you are taught at face value. Then, with the passing of time and the receiving of a few knocks, you begin to look at matters of faith, doctrine and practice more intently, and have to cope with the troublesome doubts that sometimes arise. But as you stick in there you come out of the storms and, in spite of still not understanding everything or resolving all the tricky issues, sail into the calm waters of a ‘second naivety’, where simple faith in our loving God rules supreme over every aspect of life.
This, I can testify, is a good place to be, and I plan to cruise around in these waters for the rest of my days, be they few or many.