Give me your failure; he says I will make life out of it. Give me your broken, disfigured, rejected, betrayed body, like the body you see hanging on the cross, and I will make life out of it. It is the divine pattern of transformation, and it never seems to change.
We'll still be handicapped and terribly aware of our wound, but as St. Augustine says, "In my deepest wound I see your glory and it dazzles me." Our wound is our way through. Or as Julian (of Norwich) also put it, at the risk of shocking us, "God sees the wounds, and sees them not as scars but as honours… For he holds sin as a sorrow and pain to his lovers. He does not blame us for them." (Chapter 39, Showing 13, Revelations of Divine Love) We might eventually thank God for our wounds, but usually not until the second half of life.
Richard Rohr, from Everything Belongs
Somehow for me this meditation of Rohr's does fit in with today, with the celebration of Christ the King. As Rhona pointed out in her sermon today, Christ enthroned in glory still bears on his hands and feet, and in his side, the wounds of crucifixion. When we are welcomed ourselves into his Kingdom, we will be glorified, for sure, and our entire beings will be remade imperishable; but we will still bear the wounds of our sins, and the sins done to us. But glorified! If we were to catch a glimpse of those wounds now, with out mortal eyes, they would indeed dazzle us.
Rhona recounted this morning, too, an old story of two monks, one young, a novice maybe, and the other perhaps his Prior, or certainly a monk with years of prayer and thought behind him.
The younger says, one summer morning, "When I think of Christ's wonderful mercy, I cannot imagine that he would willingly consign anyone to an eternity outside his glorious Kingdom."
The elder replies, "Why do you keep turning your head aside from the sunlight, and screwing up your eyes?"
"The light is too bright - it hurts my eyes."
"And so it is with Christ, brother. Christ does not turn anyone away; but unless we repent, and receive his forgiveness, we sinners cannot bear his light."