February 16, 2010

Romans 8

One day at MASTERS, I wanted to know how I could love people better. In answer, Marie asked me, "Who is the saddest person you know?"

About an hour ago, that question returned to my mind and I knew the answer. Me.


I hope happiness is not a farce, I hope I am not telling before I have seen fully. (I know I need to read the artist scene in The Great Divorce. Actually, I need to read the whole thing. I will, I will. And soon.)

I was Orual. (I am Orual.)

I wrote, "I won't let myself think that I hate my life. I want to rid myself of angst, of shallow pasted-on smiles. I cry everyday and yet I still can't get over it. I don't want to be seen. All I can create or express is my own frustration at the ugliness of myself."

I thought of how Orual had performed Psyche's tasks for her, bearing her burden. I wished that blaming myself would make me suffer too, so I would be glorified. I found myself reading Romans 8. "We are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him."

I wanted joy, and thought of Romans 5:2: "We rejoice in hope of the glory of God." I was afraid that I could not hope for glory because I did not suffer with him; my suffering was self-inflicted. And if these problems were my own, I must solve them myself.

But then, rescue. "Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?" I was allowed to hope, able to pray, "O Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight."

I am Orual, and I was still afraid that I would never be Psyche. But "those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers." I knew at last that I could hope for the glory of God, the beauty that would make even me beautiful.

For nothing, not even myself, can separate me from the love of God.


Elizabeth said...

Till We Have Faces is a good reminder. (I enjoyed reading that book)

Romans 6 tells us we're NOT Oruals. We've been FREED by Christ. We were slaves to sin, we served sin, we obeyed Satan as master...until Christ set us free. Sin and Oruals no longer have dominion over us (they shouldn't) and we serve Christ, and by believing He can give us peace.

Just recently myself have a realized the magnitude of this knowledge. I was an Orual too. But that cage no longer has dominion over me.

How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?. . .For he who has died has been freed from sin. . .Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. . .but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead,. . .For sin shall not have dominion over you,... - Parts of Romans 6

Christians should be the most joyful, loving people ever. And we learn to love people by following the greatest example of Love.

Uh, so, yeah. :T

Michael said...

We are divided people, two distinct creations. The new has come, but the old isn't gone yet.

I know this feeling very well, being disgusted with myself, and hopelessness that I'll ever be "better" or . . . holy. Righteous. Sometimes I take it for granted that I can't have a day without messing up, or do what is really Right.

So, Rebecca, I suppose all I can say is "hope". There is hope, and we are continually being changed into the likeness of Christ. We will be perfect, as He is perfect.

Somehow it seems selfish to wish myself to be perfect, but is it any more than wishing to be what I ought to be?

Echoes in Ink said...

"This day is holy to the LORD. Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength."

Do you ever get the feeling that some things are too high and holy to feel, to believe? I do. I feel grieved in the presence of holiness. I think I've always known my unholiness, but my sadness and Unjoy has just showed up all the clearer - like a blot on a white dress.

And yet, somehow, we're told not to grieve for ourselves, but to rejoice in God's holiness.

So, I don't think we're meant to be ashamed of our sin and fear - this great black blot - but rather to be so consumed with the glory of the light that we don't need to worry about it.

On another note, have you read The Great Divorce? There's this excellent section on what joy is in there.

Much love, Catey