Thursday, April 24, 2014
Hold onto the Nails, not the hurt.
Facebook brings us many people talking about and linking to many things, not all of them just, kind or beautiful. One had an angry screed at the top because the person felt outrage at the callus laughter of those who beat a man as the description of his beating and injuries were discussed in court. He called them not human.
Another posted smugly about her politics, and how uneducated the other side stubbornly remains for daring to think otherwise.
I received an email demanding I stand up against my own Church because it does not sanction what the world has decided must be.
In every case, and I saw people rallying to the other side, people assembling on the internet in camps of left and right, Republican and Democrat, White and Black, Christian and non Christian, those in favor and those who oppose the redefinition of marriage as recognized by the state, and in every place, I saw people declare the other side, Not Human. Or less worthy human. Or even worthless. All matter of civility and principles, manners and charity were exchanged for vitriol, I'm right, you're a dunderhead. But in less gentle terms. Everyone everywhere felt entitled, justified to hold onto the hurt.
And all I could think over and over again is Human. All too Human. Human. Human. Human.
As are all of you. And yet, we keep discarding that belief in others and presuming to keep it for ourselves. Even if what they did was wrong, callus and horrific, they remain human, like all of us, human, broken, sinful, wrong, capable of great wrong, and still, fully human. One does not lose humanity by daring to think differently, or by opposing what is popular, or by being flawed, or being old, or being young, or being unborn or by having failed mightily, or by having engaged even in great evil. Even the abortionist, even the pedophile, even the terrorist, remains human. Nothing divorces our souls from being souls.
Praying and even loving our enemies, foreign and domestic, political and social, is a direct command from Christ, a direct instruction on how to "turn the other cheek." Hate can only be diffused by love. Christ willed himself to stay on that cross to the end, until the last drop fell, until He knew he could say, "It is finished." because of love. He didn't hold onto the hurt, He held onto the nails. He could have come down from that cross, but He didn't, because He held onto those nails for our sake.
And then I went to a blog where a mother journals her struggle to care for a child with a condition that fused her fingers into mittens, and her cranial plates, and I can see from her pictures, from her writng, this is a family that has embraced their daughter and seeks to love her as fiercely and as perfectly as possible.
And I know, this is what we are called to be, to be fully human. All made in the image of God, and beloved by God and made to love as God loves, even those we see not doing their part, not seemingly worthy or educated enough or polished enough or beautiful enough, still supposed to be beloved by us. Human. Human. Human.
Hold onto those nails. Hold onto the words, "Father Forgive them, for they know not, what they do." It is the only way to remind the world, of how it was truly intended to be.
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