General / Religion / The Pulpit Speaks

The Pulpit Speaks: June 29, 1957

pulpit.jpgAn article written by my father, the Rev. C. Thomas Paige, as it appeared in the Tri-State Defender on the date shown.

The rising tide of doubt in our day and time is justifiable reason for concern on the part of each of us.

Never before in the history of mankind have so many people been bogged down in life because of the fears that haunt us. A conversation with any man on the street closes out with the sentiment, “I would if I could but I don’t think I can.”

Many of us find ourselves in deplorable conditions that could easily be overcome if somewhere in our lives we could reach back and grab a little faith that what we are trying to do can be done. Men in all walks of life today are so filled with fears that only a dynamic and meaningful faith in God will remedy their condition.

Life is so designed that, under many of our skies, we must reach back and find a sustaining faith. I have seen many people who were upon their beds of affliction and, after having talked with their doctors, I’m told one thing is lacking: the will to want to get well. Regardless to how small the patient’s sickness might be, regardless to the many forms of good medicine that might be administered, the patient must have the will to want to get well himself if the medicine is going to do any good.

A SICK WORLD

We live in a sick world. Everything we see points to the fact that men in all walks of life are sick. Yet the medicine is right at hand. Even with the nearness of the medicine, our fears, insecurities, doubts and uncertain lives are still with us. For some unknown reason, we don’t seem to be able to rise above them. But we must! Although we are chained with fears, insecurities, doubts and the like, there is a way out: through faith in God.

Men are trying all the avenues to find rest for their weary souls. Some try to satisfy their unrest through fine homes, bank accounts, big cars, elaborate vacations and the like. Many of these things bring about happiness and peace of mind for a season – but only for a season. After the season has passed, they find themselves right back where they were at first.

SUSTAINING FORCE

Some sustaining force must come into each of our lives. Each one of us must be able to look without himself and there find something that will sustain him in life’s darkest hours. There must be some invisible force that will enable us to find ourselves once we are lost.

In this life, each one sometimes finds himself at the end of his wits. We find that within ourselves, we have gone as far as we can. We find ourselves wandering around in a deep darkness, unable to find a way out. It is during such hours that we normally turn to God, through our faith in Him, and ask for a way out. Something must dispel the darkness, gloom, despair, and uncertainties that engulf our world.

TURN TO FAITH

Somewhere, the faith that has characterized people down through the ages must once again come into the lives of modern individuals and once again make us a generation of people who will once again envision the things that are highest and noblest in our world. The rising tide of doubt must be dispelled and it can be by faith.

Whatever our lot in this world, we must once again turn to a faith that will enable us to measure up to the greatest expectations of our fellow man and our God.

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6 thoughts on “The Pulpit Speaks: June 29, 1957

  1. Your father, eh? Well, I mean no offense but I dislike this sort of stuff intensely:

    God’s Santa for adults. I mean, seriously, critically reading this article makes it all too apparent that it’s trying to manipulate me, as other sellers of God have tried to manipulate all humanity for millenia.

    “Never before in the history of mankind have so many people been bogged down in life because of the fears that haunt us. A conversation with any man on the street closes out with the sentiment, “I would if I could but I don’t think I can.”

    This isn’t exactly scientific data, is it? How does the author know this fact? He doesn’t, he can’t, it’s impossible to know this. This is a statement of the author’s opinion, not fact. What about 300 years ago? Maybe there was a day when people were just a little bit more bogged down? No? Prove it! You can’t? Then don’t say it. Saying something you can’t provide evidence for is a form of manipulation if not lying outright.

    “Many of us find ourselves in deplorable conditions that could easily be overcome if somewhere in our lives we could reach back and grab a little faith that what we are trying to do can be done. Men in all walks of life today are so filled with fears that only a dynamic and meaningful faith in God will remedy their condition. ”

    aka “Blame the victim” Hey, did you know that it’s actually your fault? All of it! It’s your fault and its your fault because you don’t’ believe in God enough. Just believe in god and have more faith and it’ll all be ok. Really! Also, don’t forget to give money to your church so we can donate it to poor people and sell them on our message of hoplessness without the god we package and deliver to them on a weekly basis.

    I’m glad I have a secular government; I just wish its people would get on board with reason. If you are hopeless, you must find invigoration. YOU must FIND it, not go have it sold to you or sign up for what invigorats other people.

    Now, how do I do those kewl inline quote things?

  2. I think, Rob, that you may be missing the point. (I really don’t know – I’m not pretending to answer for VJP.) I, an atheist who would like to see a whole lot less God in our collective public life, enjoy reading these. First, I take them in context. They were written sermons. Printed 50 years ago. They’re both a window into and a reflection of the time. (And, all too often, a pretty good approximation of our own.). But perhaps most importantly, wisdom is wisdom, whether it comes from the New Testament or the half drunk broken man on the street. I’ve found it’s worth keeping an open ear toward.

    I enjoy a good religious take down, a la Dawkins or Hitchens, but I’d save ‘em for those who are doing actual damage and/or can respond.

    Oh, and to answer your question,

    like this.

    Use the blockquote HTML tags.

  3. Fair enough, I may have gone overboard (it’s a passiong of mine) but I REALLY don’t like religion. At all. It’s just a yucky, terrible, nasty thing, and I tend to yell when I see it.

    Use the blockquote HTML tags.

    test

  4. “God’s Santa for adults.”

    I guess you weren’t “critically reading this article.”

    The Reverend says, “Some try to satisfy their unrest through fine homes, bank accounts, big cars, elaborate vacations and the like.” So much for Santa Claus — with all these things, their owners are still “in deplorable conditions.”

    And that, my friend, is their fault.

    God said, “ask and you shall receive,” but let me tell you, if we first took the time to thank God for all the things we do have, most of us in the United States would not have the time to ask for the things we don’t have.

    Jesus, Jesus what’s it all about
    trying to clout these little ingrates into shape
    when I was their age all the lights went out
    there was no time to whine and mope about

    (“The Hero’s Return” –Pink Floyd)

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