Monday, October 19, 2009

coming to terms, part II

The Gospel of this past weekend is an awesome challenge, no more so than the story, last week, of the rich (young) man. What is the Gospel, what is it worth, who is Jesus really, and is fame/glory really that important in the big picture?

I recall the words of Jesus Christ Superstar, singing in reply to Simon the Zealot: "Neither you, Simon, nor the 50,000, nor the Romans, nor the Jews
Nor Judas, nor the Twelve, nor the priests, nor the scribes
Nor doomed Jerusalem itself
Understand what power is, understand what glory is, understand at all...
To conquer death you only have to die, only have to die."

I think, sometimes, that being on the right and left of the Lord when He enters into His glory would actually mean being one of the 2 'thieves' crucified with Him on Golgotha. It's how He entered into glory--are we sure we want to follow, after all?

"Dying" takes all kinds of forms: for me, perhaps: giving up my books & CDs; giving up affection; giving up comfort. If asked this, as the rich (young) man was asked, would my response have been any different? Would I not have skulked away, disappointed with myself and yet unable to say YES to the Lord's call?

I want to follow Him; I want to be His. In honesty, though, I want other things, too (perhaps--as I kid myself--not more than, but along with, the Lord): recognition perhaps summarizes all of them, and ego is at their root. This is finally what St. Augustine called 'pride,' the original "Original Sin." The other things I might worry about are really 2nd-string compared to recognition, to ego.

So I ask the same question St. Peter asked: "What's in it for us?" And I'm ready to be angry when others ask for [or get] more than I think they deserve.

So: what do I need to be stripped of in order to be more docile to the call of Christ? What do I need to let go of? What do I need have have ripped out of my grasp?

Can I say yes to Him? "They say unto Him, 'We are able.'"...

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