Faith is not an Exchange

Faith NOUN

  1. Complete trust or confidence in someone or something. ‘this restores one’s faith in politicians’

2. Strong belief in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual conviction rather than proof. ‘bereaved people who have shown supreme faith’

2.1 noun – A particular religion. ‘the Christian faith’
2.2 noun – A strongly held belief. ‘men with strong political faiths’

– Oxford Dictionary

Regardless of religion, theology, spirituality or philosophy, faith is not an exchange.

We can have faith in all kinds of things – in people, science, god(s), food, etc.

Faith, when it is compelled to reach out, is explicitly and only giving, with no expectation of receiving. Faith is not a barter system. Faith is not a trade. Regardless of what you have faith in, if you share it, you do so without resentment or any expectation of recompense.

I say this because this runs contrary to how most of us feel. If someone shares something with us we feel as though we owe them. If we share something with others we often feel as if we are owed. There is implicit expectation of an exchange – some sort of unspoken contract.

Here’s the point – if you have a faith in someone or something and this compels you to share do not expect anything in return and do not communicate an expectation. Do not expect belief in return for belief. Do not expect money in return for money.

Faith exists only to give. It gives to the individual and sometimes it attempts to reach out to others. Faith is self-sustaining…like a perpetual motion machine, once sparked it is its own energy and needs nothing to subsist.

It is when there is an expectation of return that faith begins to erode and corrode. It changes into something other than faith…it becomes transaction, a burden, creates resentment, and dies.

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