Reading a newspaper yesterday when I came across an article about Jarryd Hayne and his Christian faith. Apparently he was saved at Hillsong church (my church), and he notes the following about the power of his faith after he was left out of the State of origin rugby league squad:
- ”I guess this time I’ve been through has probably been the biggest test of my faith and my character. It helped me pretty much keep focused, and not let it distract me. ”I spoke to Ricky when I wasn’t included. He spoke to me and gave me some advice. I you could have taken it either of two ways but I felt that I just took it on board. That’s something that if I didn’t have faith or the church I definitely would have struggled with. It’s pretty much a test. I felt that I handled it well, which I was happy about.”
Really? “The biggest test of my faith”! He’s obviously leading pretty hard life. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry, as this is such a brilliant for example of the stupidity of so much of our middle to upper class Western Christianity–concerned about the inane while the rest of the world faces real hardship.
Of course it is true that faith should change our character so that we respond in a better way to all the situations of life, and this is the point that Hayne is trying to make. But he would be better advised to keep that character development to himself. it provides atheists such as Peter Fitzgibbon with the right to ask the question: “Religious people, can you tell us: Does missing out on Origin selection count as a worthy “test of faith”? For the rest of us, it was commonsense alone that not only tested our faith, it shattered it!”