Last night was weird.
I went out with a few friends to a Christmas concert and then we all ended up going for food. That part was great. It is rare that I’m with a group of just Canadians and we took advantage of that and cracked each other up with memories from our childhoods… trying to cut the bag of milk properly (who tried to open this like this???), the angst of realizing you hadn’t pulled your socks up properly once your feet were crammed into your winter boots, the horror of dreaming that you fell through the ice (seriously, I think only Canadians dream this) and other funny things from a Canadian childhood… Then we switched locations, lost some of our group and picked up two other people.
One of the people we were with last night turned out to be an Atheist and so it came up that I am indeed a Christian. He was very proud of the fact that he went from being a Christian to years as an agnostic and now is extremely happy and enlightened as an atheist. He wanted to debate and talk and explain himself. I listened. I answered back politely. I held my own. I think the others were rather impressed that I didn’t crumble. Granted I was praying hard in my head the whole time. Anyway it was fine to speak about logic and reason and those sorts of things but then he said: “How can you believe in something you can’t actually see?”
I said, “Just look around…” And he went mental. He started accusing me of being awful for accusing him of having no ability to see things or understand science.. etc etc. Anyway eventually he calmed down and we continued but I was exhausted. I don’t like debates. I’m not turned on by battling my thoughts and ideas. I think because so much of my faith is so entirely personal. It is about relationship… which he obviously didn’t understand. It was interesting that reason and logic were the things he stood behind. Add emotion and the personal element and he couldn’t handle it. The conversation eventually came to a place where he claimed loudly that as an atheist he would have no problem dating me but obviously, I’m not that open minded. I smiled.
Later this guy’s friend started to question me about how come I couldn’t date someone who didn’t share my beliefs. I explained that I have tried it and it wasn’t all bad but when it comes down to the nitty gritty why wouldn’t I want to share the same beliefs with the love of my life? It’s hard having conversations about this with someone who doesn’t believe. It’s really hard to say to someone that no matter how great they are and how much we have in common, if we don’t share the same faith we will never be complete as a couple.
Anyway it was all good conversation, we are all still friends, I think I held my own and it was actually nice to see what I say when asked hard questions. It did however, make me appreciate the conversations that I have with fellow believers and inspired me to brush up on my apologetics.
And now I’m looking at less than a week until I’m back in Canada with my people!