Todays playlist was Shostakovich symphony number 9 and on my desk is a copy of Mere Christianity. I have had too much coffee and am taking another pass through the book of Philippians. The sky is a bit gloomy which has prompted me to turn on my dusty green lamp. Explaining these irrelevant details is partially my attempt to sound more hipster, partially to set mood and another part because I think it’s funny.
These were my morning thoughts… inspired by all the things listed above and possibly randomness I watched on tv last night.
We walk through life haunted and followed by the concept of fair play, what is right and more importantly what is right for us. The question follows closely behind, why do we often do the wrong thing The thing that we know will lead to pain or confusion or tension. C.S. Lewis talks about the law of nature and how it might be more observation based than hard set rules. So if doing right (even though we know right from wrong) is not always conceivable, and the very laws of human nature are bendable, then how (insert your own frustration word) are we supposed to become more Christlike. How do we become perfect as God the Father is perfect? (Matt 5:48) Even Paul, THE PAUL said that he can’t pull of the perfection that we aspire to. (Romans 7:15)
If Paul hadn’t figured out that perfect is impossible, and that no body can be perfect than I am sure he would have given up while laying half dead in prison. Instead he kept on preaching and leading people to Christ. Why? He could have never thought that he would soon reach perfection as a felon going for his daily beating in a Roman prison. Instead Paul found the answer in the very thought that illuminated imperfection as perfection.
We cannot be perfect, but we can be perfectly loved as if we were perfect. When we try to make Christianity more spectacular than that we are just imposing our own motives and theological gymnastics on it.
Once we live from love, then we can pour love out on others and that is when we see our lives changing. We see ourselves becoming less selfish, less inward focussed and able to function at a level of humanity that deserves to be called Christian.
An observation from some great people in my life as of late is that the more we accept love and therefore give love to others, the less we find ourselves needing to access the abundant grace that is poured into our lives. A life loved perfectly truly brings out the best in us. A life perfectly loved is like turning on my green dusty lamp and realizing it still gives light no matter how dirty it might be. I love lamp.