Beit Gamaliel

The House of Gamaliel: The confluence of knowledge and faith.

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Accidental Faith

Accidents happen. Anyone who has kids especially knows this to be true. I woke up this morning to a defrosted freezer. I really appreciated the help of my children putting the groceries away, but one of them left the freezer door ajar, leaving a pool of water in my kitchen.

Accidents usually happen as a result of mistakes. According to Malcom gladwell, accidents or catastrophes are not the result of a single mistake, but rather the result of a series of smaller, seemingly insignificant mistakes.

So what happened last night? It was a series of small changes that were out if the ordinary. As a result of the changes, the regular pattern was broken and the result was an accident.

The only real way to avoid an accident is to mind the details. This can be applied to the community of faith. No one has ever accidentally found faith in God. No one has accidentally memorized scripture. No one ever accidentally walked in obedience to Gods word.

Our religious communities are plagued with moral “accidents.” And while everyone makes mistakes, I speak from observations and experience that no one has ever accidentally smoked a joint. No one has ever accidentally become an alcoholic. No one has ever accidentally lost their virginity before marriage. These moral catastrophes only happen when we walk down a path of errors, making mistake after mistake until something horrid accident happens.

May we be mindful of our choices. May God reveal the error of our ways that we never fall into moral failure.

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