It’s Friday the 13th today. Are you superstitious?
I remember as a child picking my way along the pavement, convinced that if I stepped on a crack or a line, it would cause my mother a painful injury. “Step on a crack, break your mother’s back,” my schoolmates used to chant.
Staring at the ground as I walked sometimes brought other benefits, like spotting a copper coin I might otherwise have missed. Because we’d also say, “Find a penny, pick it up, all day long you’ll have good luck.”
But our biggest superstition was probably about Friday the 13th. A pop quiz? Tripping in the lunchroom and falling flat on your face in front of everyone? Throwing up all over your desk? Anything could happen on this “unlucky” day.
Since becoming a Christian, though, I’ve learned that “luck” doesn’t exist. My wellbeing isn’t influenced by rituals such as what to do when I spill salt or sneeze. Because God is in complete control. Even when terrible things happen, I learned that God has a plan and can work in all circumstances for our ultimate good, if we trust him.
People who are against belief in God often lump Christian faith and superstition together. But the two are very different. Superstition means believing that specific actions have the power to influence whether we’ll have good or bad luck. But Christian faith means trusting that God is sovereign over all, and not even Christian-looking rituals can manipulate him. Wearing a cross, attending services, and doing other pious acts don’t in themselves have any power. We’re saved and blessed not because of anything we do, but because of who we are in Christ and what he has already done for us—by his grace.