This I Believe

Andrea - Sandy Hook, Connecticut
Entered on May 23, 2007

I believe in the hard facts of science and math that can be proven with the basic laws of our universe. I have been raised by a chemical and nuclear engineer in a household in which we do not have Bibles by our bedsides, but the CRC Handbook of Chemistry is always accessible.

I have found that I cannot put my faith and trust in something that I cannot prove exists. At times I find my inability to trust religion to be a strength because I do not depend on something that may not exist. But I also find it to be a weakness because I cannot believe in something that may exist and has been affecting people all over the world for thousands of years.

When I was little I actually wanted to go to church, but not for the reasons that a person might expect. I wanted to go because all of my friends went and I always felt out of the loop when they would talk about communion, Sunday school, CCD, or youth group. But I now know this is not a good reason. I should want to go to be able to experience something spiritual, to be able to purify myself.

This past Easter I went to my Grandma Ruth’s church not because I was forced this time but to make my grandmother happy because I love her. I would rather pretend to be interested and suffer than depress her. On this visit I tried to be alert and open to all that was presented to me, however, I was disappointed by what I heard. Members preached about how great God is and how feeble they are and how they need to be saved and rescued. I thought, If there is a God, He, She, It, would not want you to doubt yourself. God would want you to live the life He/She/It has given to you to your full ability without regrets.

This Christmas my family gathered at my grandmother’s house and she told us a story about how she discovered religion, how it improved her life, and how it was helping her with her battle against cancer. I may have been preoccupied with the fact that my grandma was giving us one of the first and last lectures of her life, or I may have been truly touched by her words, nonetheless, I began to cry because I am sure, at that moment, I felt something. It got me thinking, what do I truly believe? Not my grandparents, not my parents, not my friends, just me.

My great aunt Irene told me once, “Don’t listen to your parents and their science!” But I like science. It is a part of school, my life, my family’s lives, and all life in general.

I believe in miracles, the unexplainable, and that the pure impossible and un-calculatable makes me believe there is, in fact, something great out there.

This I believe.