The Long View

The Christian life of faith is called the Walk–it is both the Walk of Faith and the Walk with Christ. Sometimes the believer is led by the Spirit around a corner to a sudden new perspective, from habit to horizon. Imagine you are walking for hot miles down a country road, sweat falling into your eyes, you pause to wipe your face as you’ve done a hundred times–but this time, holding your eyes shut just a beat longer, shut tight, another long beat, a deafening wind:and  you open your eyes to the night air from Everest.

Use your CGI: Christ Gifted Imagination.

What we see in the first years of our Walk is in the most charitable sense of the phrase about us. He finds each of us in our personal ditch of pain and dysfunction; most call His name for the first time in utter desperation. When Jesus answers, his Light engulfs us with love and healing that feels so personal that we become disoriented to the world. We stumble along barely aware of our surroundings clinging to that light, that moment of light, without noticing it’s been receding ever so slightly as our worldly vision returns and we reassess our spiritual surroundings.

We believers see, in those first few years, a world no wider than the man-sized Cross he died on. We may hear in Sermons or read about, a Christology that is transcendentally larger than life, that fills the Universe with His presence; we may even become intellectually involved with the idea. But as always the Spirit knows best, and until we are ready we are kept as if with blinders on, following His shadow as he walks besides us.

This is a sufficient way to live in the world for bruised human souls. Many people are so damaged by the world–nothing narrows our view like flinching at memories–that a lifetime clinging to Christ is all their earthly mind can tolerate.

But God, as he promised, is abundant with Grace. Many Christians have been called to see deeper into His majesty as they age in years and faith. Famous Christians certainly, Billy Graham and Aquinas, but most are anonymous Christians, known only to local communities, sometimes known only to God. Many people touched by Jesus lead lives completely devoted to Him truthfully; quietly in shared space, heart uncontained when alone with the Beloved.

Eventually contemplation of Jesus becomes knowledge of Divine Love.

And that changes the human mind. To know that God is Love, that existence itself is suffused with love turns our view of this life upside down. To know that every human being you see is a creation of God. To know that the evil which clouds this world will be gone in an instant. To know that we humans are a Creation of Divine Love, designed for an eternity of Joy.

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