prologue. Life threw me for a loop. It’s an uncomfortable experience, to say the least. When things happen around you that you can’t understand, that make you question everything that you’ve known, even the fundamental foundation of what you built parts of your life upon. That’s how I’ve been feeling recently, and over the past week there’s a few things that caught my attention.
act 1. our horizon.As I was driving home from church today, my ipod happened to play Rachael Yamagata’s Horizon, which is meloncholy emo, yet beautiful song about falling in love with someone, but how the relationship gets confusing and lost. Somewhere along the line, we lost our horizon. I’ve been looking around, up and down, to no avail.
Life gets especially confusing when I’m trying to ground my life in anything else other than Christ himself. I mean, how is security possible otherwise? But to lose sight of the horizon will either mean you’re going to crash or you’re going to be at the wrong altitude. You’ll completely be at a loss.
And I wonder why I feel so confused and so lost and so defeated when I know I haven’t been looking to Christ himself. Everything makes sense with him, nothing make sense without him.
On Christ the solid rock I stand
all other ground is sinking sand.
act 2. surviving an avalanche. I happened to come across this article in the LAtimes about how to survive if you’re caught in an avalanche. When the avalanche is upon you, the idea is to pretty much start flailing your arms as if you’re swimming so you can somehow end up above the snow. If you’re getting submerged, then keep one arm up toward the sky, 1) so that if it sticks out of the snow, someone can see and pull you out, and/or 2) so that you know which way up is. Supposedly you’re thrown around so much that you can’t tell where up is, so that you might end up digging the wrong direction to get out of the snow. Really sad.
And finally,3) if you’re just stuck in there. Spit into the snow in front of you mouth, move around your head, do whatever you can so you’ll have as much breathing room as possible.
Extreme measures for extreme times. And again it’s a reminder for me to try to swim this through as well as I can, to keep my arm up to remember where I need to be looking (up to Christ), and finally, spit if I have to, or literally to cry out for help. Let the Spirit move in me in any way possible.
act 3. living upside down. I just finished reading G.K. Chesterton’s Orthodoxy (free on google books!), which I must say was a bit meandering, but there’s just some great thoughts and quotes in there. One such argument he makes is this:
The sceptic may truly be said to be topsy-turvy; for his feet are dancing upwards in idle ecstasies, while his brain is in the abyss. To the modern man the heavens are actually below the earth. The explanation is simple; he is standing on his head; which is a very weak pedestal to stand on. But when he has found his feet again he knows it. Christianity satisfies suddenly and perfectly man’s ancestral instinct for being the right way up; satisfies it supremely in this; that by its creed joy becomes something gigantic and sadness something special and small.
In short, he’s saying that Christianity makes the confusing world make sense. Christianity itself might seem completely confusing in the short run and the logic of the world might seem reasonable, but in the long run only a seemingly complex Christianity makes true sense out of a truly confusing world. Any other explanation is half witted and not carried out to its final and full conclusion. In short, everything else is obvious foolishness.
It’s hard to think like a Christian. There’s too much around me that argues and states otherwise. But like Elijah in the cave, not in the great and powerful wind, not in the earthquake, not in the fire, but in the gentle whisper. The gentle whisper of the Word. Can anything good come out of Nazareth? The child in a manger, the wanderer without a home, the humiliating death of a naked man on a cross.
The Word made flesh is only but a whisper in this life and to the perishing a passing foolishness. But to those being saved, the resounding fanfare of majesty into all of his glorious eternity.