Friday, January 21, 2005

Days of sickness

I was sick for a few days this week. It's a strange feeling, going through an ordeal, and at the end of it, realizing that you are a different person from the one you were. Not all my actions have changed. Not all my insides have changed. But in an odd way, I think I needed to be sick. I suffered, relatively mild compared to the rest of the suffering going on in the world every day, but it was a rough couple of days. It was in my moments of weakness that I for some reason came face to face with my faults. Perhaps it is because at other times I subconsciously use a significant amount of energy in keeping myself unaware of them, and while the remains of my energy were used up in fighting off a fever, I lost the subconscious control, and I had to look at myself and everything I did with real honesty. Maybe that was it. I don't know. Whatever the case, I had to look. The amazing thing about being sick, at least for me, is that it seems almost impossible to be stubborn in areas of morality and spirituality. I again don't know why that is. I seem to have no trouble stubbornly telling myself that I will be better soon. But to stubbornly argue against a rebuke (from the self or from God) or to ignore it altogether, I just cannot manage at these times. Not that I want to. Not deep down. But sometimes I do, you know? It's that energy thing again, I guess. You know, Deitrich Bonhoffer wrote, "the essence of chastity is not the suppression of lust, but the total orientation of one's life toward a goal." In other words, constantly fighting off temptation is not at the heart of being good. Constantly doing good is at the heart, and avoiding temptation is found in its wake. It's that total orientation of one's life thing that gets me. But I think, somehow, I'll learn to master it. With God's help, of course.

1 comment:

Brother James said...

Hey Jake. Good to see you still update this page. Just a quick note of greeting and to let you know that there's someone out there occasionally reading your page. Cheers buddy.

Ben