Blind Faith or Reasonable Faith

The man tightens his grip on the dog's harness. His senses absorb the cacophony of the city: trucks honk, voices--distant and disembodied--shout to each other, fumes from passing buses sear his nostrils, and the combination of exhaust, sunlight, and the press of humanity brings a bead of sweat to his upper lip.
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All senses are alive but one. The man is blind.
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Though his eyes can't be trusted, there is a pair of keen eyes upon which he depends. King, his loyal guide dog, has brought him over a mile on New York City's 34th Street. Navigating around sign posts, hurrying bodies, and impatient taxis, King has kept his master safe as the man takes his cues from the dog. Continually interpreting King's signals and following them is the only way he can experience freedom and safety in the middle of the bustling city.
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Suddenly King freezes, whimpers and sits down. The man almost trips over him.
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"King, what's wrong?"
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The man turns his head slightly, straining to hear what has made the dog stop.
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The roar of the city has faded into distant background music and he hears the chirping of birds overhead. The cool, green-scented breeze tells him he is on a quiet, tree-lined street.
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"C'mon, boy." He rattles the dog's harness.
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King doesn't move.
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The man frowns and touches his braille watch. Ten minutes to get to his appointment. He'll never make it now. He shakes the harness again and nudges King with his foot.
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The dog gives a soft whimper, but refuses to budge.
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The man drops the harness in frustration and listens again. No horns honking. No shouts. No blasts of exhaust. They are on a quiet street with no reason not to move forward.
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He thinks about this morning. King had been a bit balky when the harness was fitted over his head. It had taken two calls to get him to come. The dog was being stubborn. That's all it was.
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The man sighs and grabs the handle again. "Remember, I'm the master here," he growls. "I've got an appointment and you're not gonna make me late!"
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With that he gives a jerk on the handle and steps off the curb..
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King barks, but not in time.
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The man cries out as he plunges into the open manhole beside the curb. The cry is cut short as his head hits the concrete floor below. And then all is silent. All but the soft whimper from the loyal dog sitting only inches away from the opening.
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Was it blind faith or reasonable faith that made the man follow the dog at first?
Was it blind faith or reasonable faith that made him decide to obey his own instincts?
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Blind faith would have been trusting his life to a stray dog he'd picked up at the pound that morning. However, King was a dog he knew well, one who had proven his loyalty and sufficiency many times. To put faith in his dog's instinct would have been reasonable faith.
Yet, when the dog's will clashed with the man's, the man chose to follow his own understanding. The consequences were devastating.
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Some people say that believing in the God of the Bible is blind faith. "I base my life and decisions on what I can see," they say. "I can't believe in something without proof."
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But faith in God is not blind faith. Blind faith chooses to stake something of value on something unproven. Blind faith is the hallmark of any religion that does not worship the Creator, because it is based on man's faulty perception and ignores what is evident all around us. Blind faith chooses to turn its face away from the truth because the implications of that truth are not what they want to hear. And like the man in the story above, the results are devastating.
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Real faith is based on an active, vital relationship with a Person you know and trust. It is reasonable to follow a Guide who has proven His love and loyalty over and over again. It is reasonable to follow a Guide who has never once steered you wrong. Reasonable faith bases its existence on evidence from the past and assumes that the unbroken pattern will continue.
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We can see how foolish it was for the man to break faith with a guide who had never let him down, yet often cannot see how foolish it is when we do the same thing with God.
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Life is filled with unexpected manholes and events our senses cannot understand. Make sure you have a firm grip on the only One who can steer you safely home.
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