Monday, March 12, 2012

No Ordinary People

A sermon, given 70 years ago has lingered in the hallways of my heart like a fragrance.  I have sat with it for weeks now, begging its words to move in and stay.   I don't care that we just met.  It's love, baby.  And I want to wear its truth like a band on my heart for always:

It may be possible for each to think too much of his own potential is hardly possible for him to think too often or too deeply about that of his neighbour. The load, or weight, or burden of my neighbour’s glory should be laid daily on my back, a load so heavy that only humility can carry it, and the backs of the proud will be broken. It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption... 
All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit—immortal horrors or everlasting splendors. 

I feel like Joshua, hanging out in the tent where the Lord met with Moses, hanging on in that space and not wanting to leave.  And I hesitate to add any words to those above because the weight of them feels so very holy.

And I wonder about the immortal server, the eternal hotel housekeeper, the forever-soul arranging produce in the vegetable aisle.  Do we notice them?  Not their work, their performance...but them?  Their stories?  Their significance?

I think about the woman who tore her family apart with her own adulterous hands.  Or the man who drank, drove, and destroyed life.  Do we embrace them?   Do we see beyond the labels they wear, moved with compassion, hands ready with grace?

And I remember the littles living in my home, entrusted to my care, mindful that my words, attitudes, and arms propel them for eternity.

If we allowed Lewis' words to press true-love's lips upon lifeless hearts, if we let them wake us from the enchantment of soul-slumber, they'd change everything...

We'd be different parents, different spouses, different friends.  We'd be different customers, different employees, different siblings.  It would change how we handle conflict, temptation, forgiveness.  It would change how we come home to our families from long days at the office.  It would change the things we do for entertainment.

When you do things, do not let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble and give more honor to others than to yourselves.  Do not be interested only in your own life, but be interested in the lives of others.

Today is new, fresh, and ripe with choice to clear out closet space and allow the glory of those around us to move in and stay.

There are no ordinary, unimportant, shrug-off-able people.  

1 comment:

  1. yes,yes,yes...
    not sure what else to say, but YES!!!
    and, thank you for this :)