Friday, March 12, 2010

The hole in our soul…

Do you realize with what difficulty surrender will come to a fixing, managing mentality?  There’s nothing in that psyche prepared to understand the spiritual wisdom of surrender.  All of the great world religions teach surrender.  Yet most of us, until we go through “the hole in our soul” don't think surrender is really necessary.  At least that’s how it is for those of us in First World countries.  The poor, on the other hand, seem to understand limitation at a very early age. They cannot avoid or deny the hole in their soul.

The developing world faces its limitation through a breakdown in the social-economic system.  But we, in the so-called developed world, have to face our limitations, it seems, on the inside.  That’s our liberation theology.  We must recognize our own poor man, our own abused woman, the oppressed part of ourselves that we hate, that we deny, that we’re afraid of.  That’s the hole in our soul.  It’s the way through, maybe the only way, says the crucified Jesus.

Richard Rohr, adapted from Radical Grace: Daily Meditations, p. 66, day 71

Oh, this is hard. It’s the hardest thing I know to face my own broken, beaten self, the part that actually has followed his Lord this far on the via Crucis, and has the wounds to show for it. But I know that for me at least it is the only way, and all my attempts to evade it, and everyone else’s well-meaning efforts to help me evade it, are no use at all.

Why is it so hard for us simply to accept what our dear brother Paul has long since taught us, that “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me…” (Galatians 4.19b-20) and “you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3.3) These are not pious platitudes—they are Christ’s absolute truth, bloody, broken, glorious. Only in that death will we live forever; only in that defeat will we triumph…

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