Skip to main content

It's A Mystery

I'm not saying I've got it figured out. Ha! But something Johnny Irish was trying to tell me finally makes sense. Do you ever get that two-headed monster of a feeling that no one understands you, and no one really loves you? It's deeper than that, actually: It's that existential realization that you long for a completeness that nothing here can touch. And I mean nothing. I'll be straight with you: I'd hear that quoted in a CS Lewis book, or people walk around with it plastered on their social media front doors, as it were, and I'd just roll my eyes. Because the people who share that quote--I'm convinced--have never actually experienced it. It sounds like the set-up to a "gospel presentation." And that's mostly what it is, for American evangelicals: A trite opening line that ends with telling the drug addict or the pervert or whoever that only Jesus can satisfy. Prepare yourself.

But that's not even remotely true. Jesus doesn't take that away. He never said He would. Following Jesus only gets you ready to see the truth: there are two paths. One is the path of Pleasure, and the other one is Pain. Jesus says, "Follow me," and essentially he's saying it'll pay off eventually. You tell Him about the Hole, and He says, "I know."

Pleasure is always there, and it's time for someone to say it: Pleasure is better, and easier. Or at least it starts off that way. But you're trying to fill the Hole, and, like I said, nothing here fills it. We're all addicts and junkies to fill it, and the only thing I can picture to describe this is that Jesus stays on the other path and has a good cry while we get tricked again. He hopes we aren't too deep into it not to even notice that he's still standing there.

As you go, Jesus shares the Pain with you, which is nothing, if not inspiring. You take note of the fact that Jesus never leaves, and he never takes it personally, all the times you go the wrong way. At least not enough to leave. You start to give the Pain like gifts to each other, because that's the only thing to do, really.

He had said he loves us, and would never lead us astray, and you start to believe him, because, well, he's been here before. The Pain and the Pleasure get stronger as you go. You realize that Jesus is not just a guy who's been down the path; He's--in a way that doesn't quite make sense--the way you're going.

This is the truth. No one will buy what you're selling--and no one should--if you promise them happiness and no pain here. And if you act like the drugs or the sex or the food or the fame isn't attractive to you, they'll laugh right in your face, and go on their way. We all carry The Hole around inside of us, and there's very little point in pretending otherwise.

If you like pop music at all, you may know of all those stories of famous musicians who died of drugs and other things. There is one thing I've always appreciated about them: they told the truth about what they wanted and needed; they didn't bother fooling themselves or others; they know that there is something very wrong here; we aspire to things we cannot realize here. They have every right to mock some of us for trying to pretend that we're OK, and that the good life we can build here is enough.

Do I trust Jesus enough to lead others with Him and to Him? Or do I use others, because I'm still thinking about my own wants and needs?


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Underneath, It's All The Same

 As a general rule, I hate "pox on both your houses" takes on politics. Most of the time, I'm inclined to think that a particular person chooses this take because someone else has made them uncomfortable with a certain aspect of their own philosophy. If they adopt a posture of cynicism, maybe they can escape the moral force of that criticism. That could be bulverism in any one case, but I have seen it before, and I can't paint a picture without generalizing. Anyway, I didn't come here to talk about that. I came here to say that both major parties in the United States--and the people themselves--have embraced the absolute individualism at the heart of classical liberalism. Rightists want freedom from constraint in economics, environment, religious liberty, and a few other things. Leftists don't believe in this absolute individualism with respect to economics or the environment (not to mention religious liberty), but they do embrace it with respect to human sexu

You're Not Going To Die If The Democrats Win The Elections

I guess I'll tell you my gripes with Crisis magazine: the whole thing sounds like a Rod Dreher fever dream. You would think that armies of drag queens were kidnapping children to take them to the infamous Story Hour, in some kind of right-wing dystopian novel that is the reverse of The Handmaid's Tale. Come on, man. In other news, I would like to congratulate the Democrats, on seemingly finding some semblance of an economic message. You know, I'm old enough to remember when they actually were the party of the working class; it seemed like there for a while, they were the party of debt-ridden upper-class English majors, complaining because their slice of the pie lacks cherry sauce. [Wait, aren't they still those people?--ed.] Too soon. Anyway, I am what they used to call a "social conservative". And to be clear, I am not a social conservative for the sake of winning an election; I really believe and try to do the things that I say in this regard. Someone, howev

Final Election Analysis

 We might even say we're mere hours away from beginning to know who will assume the office of president on January 20 of next year. I'll cut right to the chase: I think this is going to be a really big win for Joe Biden. Real Clear Politics has shown a very heavy right bias, in the including of sketchy online polls, and in delaying the release of live voter polls more favorable to Joe Biden. Even so, their national polling average shows the lead for Biden at 7.8%. Keep in mind that if that were to hold, it would be a bigger percentage margin than Barack Obama achieved in 2008. The state polls are tight nearly everywhere, but they show clear leads for Joe Biden. The upper Midwest probably will not make any presidential calls on the night of the election, but Biden's lead in states that Trump should absolutely easily hold in a reelection campaign indicates to me that the president is in real trouble. He achieved a popular vote percentage in 2016 of 46%. He's going to be n