Friday, August 06, 2004

More about the music

About tracks from Jill Paquette's CD:

"Come to Me" verbalizes God's call to the struggling believer. And that's me. Sometimes all my faith is the determined clinging to the intellectual truth that the one true God is the Father of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David...and Jesus Christ, our Savior. And that intellectual belief often angrily rants against false religions. All others ARE false! At times, those thoughts are the only ones I have that are akin to the Christian walk. Seems odd. StarGazer and I were discussing this, and his reminder that one's faith fluctuates in its types of manifestation---throughout one's life---reassured me. Just read the lyrics. You'll see what I mean.

"Lift My Eyes" contains a line reminiscent of C. S. Lewis's "The Weight of Glory" sermon:

(from the song) "Love tells me without speaking, resonating in my soul,
With a light that's ever reaching, ever letting me go."

(from Lewis's sermon) "...this brings me to the other sense of glory---glory as brightness, splendor, luminosity. ... We do not want merely to see beauty,though, God knows, even that is bounty enough. We want something else which can hardly be put into words---to be united with the beauty we see, to pass into it, to receive it into ourselves, to bathe in it, to become part of it. ... That is why the poets tell us such lovely falsehoods. They talk as if the west wind could really sweep into a human soul; but it can't. They tell us that 'beauty born of murmuring sound' will pass into a human face; but it won't. Or not yet. For if we take the imagery of the Scripture seriously, if we believe that God will one day give us the Morning Star and cause us to put on the splendour of the sun, then we may surmise that both the ancient myths and the modern poetry, so false as history, may be very near the truth as prophecy. At present we are on the outside of the world, the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure. We cannot mingle with the splendours we see. But all the leaves of the New Testament are rustling with the rumour that it will not always be so. Some day, God willing, WE SHALL GET IN. [emphasis mine]"

That last sentence brought tears to my eyes yesterday. "We shall get in." Into a place and a Person, our true home. We will be with Love and be inside it and infused with it. Not the vague, abstract notion of love. But Love, the immortal, eternal, all-knowing, all-being, everywhere-present God who created us to be His children forever.

This is the reality of why we are here. And we young people long for a representation of reality that proves itself to be truly pointing to what is real. (We cannot contain reality, only describe our understanding of it.) But we seize upon the representation and cling to it till it is bled dry of all meaning. Our quaint, trite Christianese phrases did not begin so. At one time, when they were first coined, they overflowed with meaning, put words to that "love...without speaking, resonating in [the] soul."

The life of faith must be, has to be, a continual holding on and letting go, like a flying trapeze artist releasing one apparatus and reaching for another, trusting that he will not fall in the interval between release and grasp. Yet, unlike the trapeze routine, this process is not planned by us. We do not know how long the interval is, nor the precise timing needed for a successful release and grasp. But we know the One who does, and we must leave the "routine" to Him. Then there are the times we want to know ahead of time---we want to practice the routine over and over before we commit to performing it. But God doesn't tell you, every time you want to know, "Yes, this is the trial run. You will have to do it again." (God is a great Teacher but He doesn't have "tells" that let you know which are the most important notes for the exam or what questions will be essay assignments!) Only in the looking back do you understand that perhaps you were preparing for the next task or that you had to experience again a lesson you thought you had mastered before.

It is times like those, the times of wanting to know what's going on and why, that I go "nuts" and crawl the walls, so to speak. At least in my mind. And often in my actions. Words too. This truism is probably too cliched, but I like it anyway: "Worry does not empty tomorrow of its troubles: it empties today of its strength." Too often I have not been present in the present. To mitigate the moment's troubles and vainly to ward off tomorrow's, I have fretted during one activity or another about the next thing to be done, or even about future possibilities or certainties. And what use is that fretting? None!

So I ask myself---Well, what do I do then, if I am not to think, speak, and act in the way I have in the past? And I answer (perhaps God's voice is entering now): Elena, do you have to have that answer now? Can you not just do the next thing and the next thing and the next? Just "one foot in front of the other," to quote a song from an old claymation Christmas film. And trust that some of those next things will be what prepares you for a great-great-great-great-grandchild activity of that task? You see, time management is one of my great "areas for improvment."

Which reminds me...time to end this post. What a lovely, rambly time we've had, huh!?!

Comments welcome!

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