Sunday May 4 2008 Line Upon Line

WARNING! There is no game-related material today. It's not too late to turn back!

Unusual event: I slept for eleven hours straight last night. I was really wiped out from the week before.

I got a call from one of my home-teach-ee families this morning, asking if I would cover his Sunday School class today, which I was glad to do. I got to see some of my students from just a few years back. Now they are approaching Mission age. Since it was just the three young men, I just regaled them with some mission stories and advice to get them pumped up.

After church we headed up to Salt Lake Valley to visit Tamie's sisters for a BBQ. We sat out on the back porch in some perfect spring weather watching the ten children play around. My brother-in-law is about to set out on a year term to Kuwait with the Imperial uh... I mean National Guard.

Not much to report. I have like a thousand things on my mind, but only one for now.

I have been thinking a lot about sanctification, I guess the process of becoming a better man. I'm not so concerned about forgiveness, but how can I actually become changed, to have my base desires rooted out of my heart? It made me recall a few passages; the first from Helaman Chapter 3:

v25 Nevertheless they did fast and pray oft, and did wax stronger and stronger in their humility, and firmer and firmer in the faith of Christ, unto the filling their souls with joy and consolation, yea, even to the purifying and the sanctification of their hearts, which sanctification cometh because of their yielding their hearts unto God.

I think "yielding" in this case has to do with a voluntary action. Like a knight yields to his liege. It cannot be taken by force. And it happens little by little. For most people their transformation will be a bit at a time, step by step.

The other from Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, which I read numerous times on my mission, from an essay entitled Man or Rabbit, which I quote here for the reader's convenience:

We are to be re-made. All the rabbit in us is to disappear—the worried, conscientious, ethical rabbit as well as the cowardly and sensual rabbit. We shall bleed and squeal as the handfuls of fur come out; and then, surprisingly, we shall find underneath it all a thing we have never yet imagined: a real Man, an ageless god, a son of God, strong, radiant, wise, beautiful, and drenched in joy.

“When that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.” The idea of reaching “a good life” without Christ is based on a double error. Firstly, we cannot do it; and secondly, in setting up “a good life” as our final goal, we have missed the very point of our existence. Morality is a mountain which we cannot climb by our own efforts; and if we could we should only perish in the ice and unbreathable air of the summit, lacking those wings with which the rest of the journey has to be accomplished. For it is from there that the real ascent begins. The ropes and axes are “done away” and the rest is a matter of flying.

In my mission, I often thought of Grace and Salvation perhaps a bit like being in a pit with no way out, then comes a savior who sets down a ladder. By who's effort am I saved from the Pit? It is I who climbed the ladder, but where would I be without it. But now, I'm not sure of even that isn't too simple, or even erroneous in a way.

Now I think of it more like a long journey with a Guide. A Guide who must frequently help me out of briar patches and muddy ravines.

Disclaimer: I am not a very good person. I make no pretensions this is the case. Maybe there is no such a thing as a "good" person exists (except maybe my wife!!!), only people who keep trying. My best hope is that perhaps some soul will be uplifted or enlightened by my musings. May you be bless-ed good reader!

I am very happy. I feel like a hobbit in his hole... after his grand adventure. I suppose my children are the grand adventure right now. Speaking of which, Tamie is starting to *feel* pregnant. We are both very excited.


Alan Roberta said...


RanAngel said...

If you're interested in my opinion, I think that every person is, at their centre, a 'good' person. All that is required to actualise this potential is simply for them to try to be a good person (or rather, try to find the good person who they already are).

It doesn't matter if they fall or make mistakes, they still become a good person by that striving to be good. This doesn't make their bad actions justifiable, necessarily, it just means that they still have more to learn before their journey is done.

You sound like you are in a good place in your head right now. I'm happy for you for that. I wish you the best of good fortune in making that place even better.



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