This little sentence has quieted me, not because I think I’m profound, but because I feel completely undone when I think of what length our God will go to reel us in. Although my time away from my blog was filled with other writing including a retreat presentation, understanding Mary and a possible children’s book, I now feel slightly guarded about “sounding profound” in blogging. Offering Christian encouragement is not a chore for me, although I prefer the give-and-take of real conversation instead of unloading paragraph after paragraph. The work, however, is in the hesitation of sounding as if I have an ear closer to the mind of God than somebody else. If it helps you, I don’t hear the actual voice of God, but I do feel consumed by an irrepressible need to share God’s mercy to the vulnerable heart. I am driven to offer the good tidings of hope won for all by Christ not out of vanity’s eloquence but for the sake of love. It is the simple love of God that we needful creatures strive to understand. One of my greatest fears in writing about what continues to burn in my bones is sounding “preachy”. Even though my words may not be the key to another’s lock, still the thought of losing one’s attention because the message is sacrificed by the messenger is troubling as it is sad for me. Somehow this time away from my blog has found rest when contemplating the silent Jesus in Mary’s womb. There seems to be, at least to me, no worthy place for me to be profound when the holy life of Jesus, both fully human and fully God, began redemption from a fertilized egg to giving up His ghost. As profound and impressive it was that God revealed Himself to us through the incarnation, crucifixion, and resurrection, the wonder God induces is simply a gift to understand His love for us. It is when the warmth of gratitude slowly rages to engulf your bones with God’s all-consuming fire, that the miracle of Christmas, the very incarnation of “God with us”, changes a heart to live in the freedom of God’s will. Gratitude to do the will of God is not out of obligatory fear but obedience to a righteous plan for our unique life. I am grateful for the time away from blogging to further remind me that we were made to be much more than profound, we were made to be awed and respond in love.
I’d like to leave you with a poem I wrote to encourage men while recently on retreat called “Respond in Love.”
You’re just syllables of the Perfect Word.
You’re our fallen world’s rustling leaves of change.
You’re Salt to soup the resurrection stirs,
Hopeful hands catching tears from Adam’s shame;
Setting the world ablaze with but one flame.
Life without love is but life without Christ,
In Him alone salvation makes its claim.
Endless love has conquered death and paid your price
Will love within you burn or turn to ice?
If you’re without Love,
Unfading awe wanes,
Love is less humane.
If you have not love,
Your light becomes dim,
No fuel for your lamp,
No wick left to trim.
But, if you have love –
Your calling is sure.
Your vision is clear.
And your hope secure.
Yes! If you have love –
Desire is strong,
Strongholds soon crumble-
To Calv’ry’s swan song.
Yes! If you have love –
Your gaze becomes steel,
Always proclaiming –
That your God is real…
Give yourself to God – He Gave Himself to you,
Put faith into action, and God will renew
Always respond in a love you can’t control,
And remember that Christianity…
is God’s marriage proposal to the soul.
©2011 by Chris Clody 11/12/2011
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