Tuesday, June 21, 2011

it is not right...(NFTPL #51)

so last night i began summer classes with looking at genesis 1-3. since i have taken old testament classes in previous educational institutions much of the class was review and things that i pretty much have covered six times over....yes i do know what it means to have a hermeneutical/interpretive perspective and what communication between writer/reader/text looks like.

it seemed funny to me that so many of the people around me hadn't heard of the gilgamesh epic and were amazed that people used scripture for harming others and disregarded the call of love. in turn i had forgotten that there are those who hold the biblical text as the only means of God's self revelation to the world to the extent that the actual tangible books becomes an idolic talisman. not that there isn't power in scripture...it is a weapon (as gary oldman's character says in "the book of eli") but it also offers life and freedom, rather it is the power behind the words the truth revealed through the stories, histories, poetry and letters that have power to change nations, hearts and lives.

anyway what stood out in this repetition of previous courses...no rather what was clearly a reminder of human nature was genesis 2:7 "it is not good for (man) human to be alone" even with God's unmediated presence and all the animals and the spiritual beings in eden the place specifically and uniquely created for humanity....there was loneliness (there was pain too but that is for another rant). we humans from the core of our nature, and i would say from the core of our bearing the image of God, are hardwired for community for relationship for connection with others.

this truth of human nature is a beautiful and horrific truth. people and relationships can and do both restore us and shatter us. for the tender and big of heart the loss of a loved one can be that which destroys all hope in life and love...on the flip side a grand and incredible love can redeem one from the pit of death. as c.s. lewis the writer of the chronicles of narnia said in regard to his choice to love and marry joy davidson lewis; "Why love, if losing hurts so much? I have no answers anymore: only the life I have lived. Twice in that life I've been given the choice: as a boy and as a man. The boy chose safety, the man chooses suffering. The pain now is part of the happiness then. That's the deal. " 

we each have to choose whether or not to risk the suffering because it is worth the happiness. given the experiences and great losses in my life so far i could easily lock my heart away and choose the safety found in the known pain of aloneness. but what i have found is that aloneness while seeming safe actually hurts more, it is a dull but steady pain, slowly eating away at hope and faith like a cancer. where as the risk to relationship to love to possible hurt can be a sharp and unbearable pain counter balanced by the blinding warmth and unfathomable touch of love and deep knowing. yes both hurt and yes both suck and yes the pain of aloneness and the pain of love can drive one mad ass crazy and leave you feeling so fucking chaotic that things like death and suicide seem like the right decision...but i think that the choice to love, the risk of opening yourself up is truly the most beautiful and wild and most human risk one can take.

if i speak in the tongues of men and of angel but have not love,  i am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. and if i have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if i have all faith so as to remove mountains, but have not love, i am nothing. if i give away all i have, and if i deliver my body up to be burned, but have not love i gain nothing. (1 corinthians 13:1-4)

i choose love, i choose to care about and for people who will break my heart because they also will bless me and shower me with beauty and truth....pain is always part of the joy. and so i will risk pain for the blessing of joy and i will hold on like jacob wrestling with the angel until i receive the blessing for which i have been created and promised.

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