GraceNotes: Holding the Space for … Reflection

#88 — August 1, 2019

The smallest seed of faith is better than the largest fruit of happiness.

— Henry David Thoreau

Greetings, Inspired Seekers!

There has been a lot of discussion about faith recently. In the news, in coffee shops and over cocktails, the conversation often turns to faith and what it means in the troubling times of trial and separation that we live in. Times when it seems as if there is always a force trying to separate us from each other and from the love of a compassionate God, who goes by many names.

Faith, it seems to me, is not about certainty. Faith – real faith – almost always has doubt as its traveling companion. And, because of that, it is in good company. For faith is not about following blindly or rationalized thought. Faith is a substantial and critical part of spiritual growth and transformation, which requires an opening of the heart and mind. We must cross the threshold into the SpaceForGrace. During that time of transition – that “in-between time” as I often call it – our faith can seem diminished and small. But regardless of how small it is, that little bit of faith gives us the strength to say “yes” and to move into uncharted waters where we are presented with new beginnings and fresh starts.

Deepening and expanding our faith often requires that we let go of the old that does not serve and that we have outgrown. Throughout the Christian gospels, we see disciples shedding old beliefs to take a new path. In Buddhism, The Buddha left it all behind to go out and offer goodness to the world. And all of those spiritual pioneers traveled with faith and doubt as their trusted companions.

We must move through the shadows of unknowing to reach the next level of our spiritual development and to offer expanded versions of our gifts to the world.

Faith is not stagnant. Love does not stop growing. As Spiritual Ambassadors, the world would probably be better served if we listened to both our doubts and our faith; if we focused on how we live our faith rather than just what we believe about that faith.

As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.”

Grace-Fully Yours,
Reverend Deborah

Monthly Affirmation: My faith and my doubt are both a part of my spiritual path.

The Reverend Dr. Deborah Darlington offers Spiritual Direction to people of all paths. She can be reached at or at 215 260 1611.