Saturday, April 19, 2014


No matter how heavily his sins weigh on his conscience, no matter how seriously they have diminished his dignity, the very act of turning again to God is a manifestation of the special dignity of man, his spiritual grandeur...the grandeur of the personal meeting between man and God in the inner truth of conscience.
--John Paul II

If you will not hear the truth, nobody can tell you

A question that we all ask, "Quid est Veritas?" when we're often staring it right in the face.

A portrait of an Intellectually Curious One:
A small little boy, with a timelessly unfortunate bowl cut and his prim little glasses, raises his hand.
First, casually, with the air of one who has nothing better to do,
then urgently,
as if the entire fire and focus of his being is forced into the energy of his raised arm.
He waves his hand in the air.
His hyperactive, floppy little body is being held alert and aloft by his desperate need to speak.
This is the paragon student:
the student who is so excited by what is happening in his mind that he has to put it into words and share it with the class.

This small child is much more of an intellectual than the bored collegiate who sits in the back of the lecture hall and scoffs under his breath at the comments the professor makes about heteronormative masculinity or Freud's theories of gender identity.
The professor wishes with all her being that this boy would maybe, if not raising his hand, or contributing to class, at least refraining from muttering sotto voce critiques of her lecturing style.
As I sit next to this man, I wonder what the class would be like if it was filled with fired-up, hyper young boys with their energy rising into their hands, which are all raised high into the air, desperate for a platform to speak.

I wondered, and I wonder still, how all the desire for truth gets squelched out of someone's heart, so they sit back complacent, not caring or wondering about the truth that is knocking at their door. It seems inhuman, for it seems that the fundamental driving force behind so much of human nature is the question: what is this? and why is it? This curiosity is so fundamental to each of us, it is a sad defeat when it is lost. Don't we all wonder what waits for us in tomorrow? Don't we look at the sky and wonder what's on the other side of the blue?
There seems something so fundamentally necessary about our restlessness.
Without it, where would we be?
'Our desires are not too strong,' quoth C.S Lewis, 'but rather too weak.' Limits, for human beings, are safety nets. With them, we can curb our interests to theories that will not change our minds, we can distract our desires with substitutes that silence their constant clamor, and we can let Truth pass by us.

But the thing about grace, I think I've maybe begun to learn, is that it shatters those limitations. It destroys the script.
We often find ourself caught in a story that we know all too well.
Sin is a story that is rather hackneyed by now, we're all rather familiar with the way it goes.
But grace, I think, is that moment when we realize it's never too late to change the story.
The ability to change directions is a deeper grace than we will ever understand.
Up until it arrives, the denouement is not a foregone conclusion.
That is one of our sweetest graces: the grace to make all things new.

How is it to be explained? The very heart and mystery of the human person?
-The Jeweler's Shop

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