By Dan Blair, a marriage counselor and family counselor.
While various human beliefs and interpretations of Christianity have played a part in creating havoc in personal and political realms, there are benefits to believing in a loving and personal God. Belief in God has persisted in spite of all the failings of followers. Benefits of faith in God are themselves topics of research. Each is also based on one’s faith (which is often based on what one wants to believe). Everyone has faith; the object of one’s faith differs.
Belief in God affects your view of suffering. Some believe that because of God or other reasons suffering has value or is redeemable. Some think there is too much suffering and that lessens the likelihood of God. Either way, benefits of faith remain:
- Gratitude. A renewing of reasons to feel thankful.
- Ongoing social support.
- Random acts of kindness and organized movements to relieve suffering.
- Optimism where good comes from bad.
- Strategies for coping; making meaning out of difficulty.
- Full forgiveness and the freedom it gives.
- Stress management.
- A reduction in overthinking and social comparison.
- Lasting accomplishments.
- Great retirement plan.