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a passionate repentance

Have you ever read something or you've been reading and all of a…

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may God stand
Have you ever read something or you've been reading and all of a sudden this idea leaps off the page and smacks you between the eyes? It shatters your concentration, and you can't just..go back to reading. You have to chew on the idea for a while.

This idea hit me while I was reading "The Orthodox Church" by Bishop Kallistos Ware.

1.) We seek union with Christ, not to become what we are not but to become *what we already are*. In other words..further up and deeper in.

2.) That we will be gods with Christ's God. Not in the sense of a pantheon, but as daughters and sons. Kings and Queens, rejoicing in the kingdom where *everything* has achieved it's real potential.

All my life I've been grappling with this idea that I'm essentially a broken person. Needing healing, or changing the better to be like 'perfect' humanity. And sometimes that healing's now, in faith healing services or in the life to come. "You'll have a perfect body in heaven."

But..what if that's wrong? I could be way off here. I'm a newbie, I don't even have the right to call myself a catechumen. And yet, the idea, the very idea is profound. What if I am the way I am because that's the way I'm *meant* to be? What if I'm not broken at all, just different? What if I have something, some understanding or some gift that comes *from* this handicapped state? What if God *wants* me not to accept what I am and hope for 'something better' but to live like this and find God in this body? Right now like it is? What if this IS perfect?

It *does* make a difference. It makes a real difference. There's no point in apologizing for something that's the way it's supposed to be. There's no sense in being ashamed or feeling slow or awkward or different. Maybe all I can do is know what it feels like to be me, maybe I might not have any sort of gift because I'm different, but surely this is no greater a leap of faith to accept or even to wonder at than the idea that I am broken, and somehow defective.

I should talk to someone about it. I am hesitant to approach the priests, I don't know them well and this is personal. But at the same time I don't want to pursue an idea that is heretical. And I'm *not* advocating that God *wants* people to be unhappy or in pain or less able. I'm not advocating that at all. Just that maybe all the things that I am, even if they hurt, even if they are awkward, maybe there are *reasons*. And in the world that is to come, where the world and I will be perfected, maybe then all the things that seem so awkward and so painful now won't be.

I'm no theologian..and so let this lie where it falls in the area of ideas, half-baked and otherwise. God works in ways I don't understand. And sometimes I don't understand myself either.
  • I remember saying something to these points some time before.

    I don't think you're broken, but I do think what you lack -wellness - can give you greater insight into truth. Want is a gift: it teaches proportion and priorities. The blind have their other four senses accentuated. With those, more is perceived that others overlook.

    Were there an afterlife and a heaven, I do not think people's souls there enjoy perfection. Were there perfect understanding and perfect love, Lucifer would never have rebelled. Want and desire seem to be universal constants: but, then, love is also a desire for completion and realizing something is missing. It makes me wonder whether God created so much just to have company. Was God lonely? Is this why worship appealed to him, and less so as each century passed?

    ...and no, I do not think it is heretical to question...and were it treason against God to speak one's mind, as Patrick Henry would say - make the most of it.
  • Most beloved, our bodies will be transformed after the resurrection... However, you are right to say that in this life, our weaknesses are the instruments of God's glory. Papa John once said that in the next world, the scars we sustained in this life will become luminous... much like Christ's.

    Above all things, try not to worry too much. We are a paradox. We are broken, but not defective. Our infirmities benefit us and others, yet we shall be healed. We are content, yet we hope. You are doing very well; do not be troubled. You say that you do not understand yourself, most beloved, and those are words of wisdom.

    *tender robed embrace*
  • I have been taught that too -- do not worry about heresy. I do think that you had to be at a certain stage of understanding before having this insight, and that not just anyone could have told you and been believed.

    As the the "perfection" we are to strive towards, C. S. Lewis said someplace ( I cannot remember where) that when we die it will be as if we'd been writing in a book, with all sorts of blots and fingerprints and stains, and woke to find that each mark had been turned by the Master Illuminator into a thing of beauty - illuminations and pictures and gold.
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