On not having to pretend

Rowan Williams describes news so good we find it hard to believe.



Rowan Williams describes news so good we find it hard to believe.


The faith that the New Testament calls for is an act of trust. Trust that you are welcomed, that you are valued; trust that the power that made and loves and sustains the world is working for your good. And that sounds like such obvious good news, why would anybody not believe it – and yet, of course, we find it very hard because we quite like the process of justifying ourselves, rather than somebody else doing it for us.

But that trust, that deep trust, tells me, tells us you do not have to secure your position at the expense of anybody else. You don’t have to persuade a distant and hostile God to be nice to you. You don’t have to pretend. There is something that holds, affirms, and of course transforms you. So if you absorb that into your mind and heart, a lot of what’s going on is that you’re free from anxiety. Do I have to keep God happy? No. Do I have to succeed in the world’s terms? No. Do I have to make absolutely sure that nobody else ever does better than I do? No. And something begins to blossom in the middle of all that, some kind of liberty from the myriad kinds of anxiety that drive us and cramp us and paralyse us sometimes in our lives.