Harper needs to see the darker side of the world to appreciate the good and to know the plight of many people. In Anne Rice’s book, Christ the Lord, seven year old Jesus witnesses the terror of running from bandits and people intent on robbing and perhaps killing he and his family. He sees the destruction of cities and the many displaced people and is saddened. He is also frightened by this. But in all this Jesus is “sensitive”. He recognizes it as evil even though his child mind doesn’t understand it. I think in reality Jesus did witness similar atrocities and it helped form his compassion for others and refine his message of salvation – a salvation not based in this world, but as a deliverance from it. Or perhaps a transformation of the world by God’s power to be something better. A new earth.
I need to shelter and protect Harper, but I also need to allow him to see some evil in doses he can handle, so that he can have a realistic image of the world he lives in so that he will develop a genuine compassion. I was sheltered too much (with all good intent) by my parents and, consequently, do not have a potent compassion for the plight of others. If harper is to change the world, he needs to understand this…. As do I.
1 Corinthians 6:20 says, “You are not your own, you have been bought with a price.”
I read this sentence today and, being honest, I must say that I do not like it. Right now, the thought of surrendering myself to you means that I will be losing my identity – who I am. It doesn’t seem like I will be gaining enough or more to replace “me” if I give myself over. Who am I left with if I give myself up? What happens to “Andy”? Am I just like everyone else? I want to be unique.
Knowing all this, still, where is the profit in keeping my identity if I don’t have you? But the promise of having you seems like it won’t fill up the void of losing myself. If I have myself on the last day and the end of the earth is before me, where will I be if you are not looking upon me? But I don’t want to be just another one of your children. I want more. I want something special and unique. I want there to be an extra twinkle in your eye when I see your face the first time. If I don’t get this, then I’m not sure it’s worth it.
But that’s the point isn’t it? It’s not about me and it’s all about you. I admit that I still don’t like it because it makes me feel equal, less important, average. So how do I become humble enough to allow you to take over? I think I have struggled with this root issue my entire life though I’ve rarely realized it. Perhaps the next phase in my growth is the realization that not only are you responsible for my salvation; not only is it solely through your power that faith itself lives in me; but perhaps, you are also the source of my humility. Maybe even humility is a grace. Maybe I can’t even do this on my own. This must be, else I could claim it for myself.
So at the end of this prayer, I ask you O Lord to impress upon that I am not my own even though I’ll struggle against it. Create in me humility since I cannot create it myself. Use your sovereign power to rule over me and transform that which I have not the power to transform. Be thou still my strength and shield because I have no other and cannot do this myself.