Christian faith starts with the life and teachings of Jesus. Most people find Jesus striking; his teachings and actions call for equality, compassion, and integrity. He provides impressive insights into the human heart and behaviour, which powerfully resonate with people's experiences down the centuries.
But was Jesus anything more than just a wise teacher? Well, it is clear that everything Jesus did flowed from his unique relationship with God. The gospels witness Jesus speaking and acting with God's direct authority, whom he calls "Father". This has lead Christians to see that the way to make real sense of Jesus is to share the gospel's vision of Jesus as being God himself; the divine Son who has become human. Through the Holy Spirit, Christians experience Jesus as being eternally alive, even today sharing God's rule and inviting people to live in fellowship with him.
Therefore to have a Christian faith, to follow Jesus, means striving to discover Jesus as the living God. It means discovering for ourselves Jesus’ intimate relationship with the Father. It means discovering that each of us is loved and redeemed by God – a lasting source of confidence, courage and peace. It also means discovering that this love enables us to fulfil our potential, by trusting God to transform us.
Christian faith grows little by little, as we begin to see how God is at work in our own lives. Jesus knows what it means for each of us to flourish and come into our own. Having a living relationship with him enables us to discover how God can empower us to achieve this, transforming the way we see ourselves and others.
For each Christian then, faith is a constantly changing process of discovery and reorientation. Some days will bring clarity, wonder and joy, while other days will bring confusion and doubt. But prayer, the Bible and the Eucharist are there as means by which Christians can explore and guide their faith. Furthermore, Christians also know that their faith has been shared by billions of others, passed down through two thousand years. This continues to this day in the Church, which as a community supports, challenges and broadens each other’s faith.
Come with an open mind and open heart, and you too can discover the profound freedom, comfort and joy that knowing Jesus makes possible.