To have faith in a religion, any religion, is to accept at some primary level that its particular language of words and symbols says something true about reality. This doesn't mean that the words and symbols are reality (that's fundamentalism), nor that you will ever master those words and symbols well enough to regard reality as some fixed thing. What it does mean, though, is that you can 'no more be religious in general than [you] can speak language in general' (George Lindbeck), and that the only way to deepen your knowledge and experience of ultimate divinity is to deepen your knowledge and experience of the all-too-temporal symbols and language of a particular religion. Lindbeck would go so far as to say that your religion of origin has such a bone-deep hold on you that, as with a native language, it's your only hope for true religious fluency. I wouldn't go that far, but I would say that one has to submit to symbols and language that may be inadequate in order to have those inadequacies transcended.This quote struck me as I've basically reached the same conclusion.
To paraphrase and restate Wiman: I think religion is trying to say something true about reality, about human experience. And I also agree that the words and symbols aren't reality. Reality is sitting behind or beyond the words and the symbols. And I also agree that an important way--and perhaps the only way for many of us--to gain increasing mastery of these symbols, and thus approach and increasingly articulate the reality behind it all, is to settle into--really settle into--our religion of origin, our native religious language. This is our best hope for true religious fluency. And the path in attaining that fluency is to submit to the symbols, inadequate as they are, so that those inadequacies might be transcended.
People often ask me, "Why are you a Christian?" What I summarize above is a large part of that answer. I am submitting to the symbols--mastering them and letting them master me--so that something true, beautiful and real is increasingly experienced in my life.