hello, you. maybe i know who you are and maybe you know who i am, or maybe we’ve never met and never shall. by way of introduction, my name is amelia. i was born to wonder and to love and to adore, and that pretty much sums up my existence.
but here’s some more explanation.
do you know God? i hope you do. each of us was created uniquely and specifically by God to know Him and be known by Him, to worship and delight in Him, to be intimately knit to Him and loved more completely by Him than even the most perfect of human relationships could hope to provide.
this world God made for us to inhabit is wonderful and beautiful and in some ways inordinately strange, if you stop to think about it.
“i look around at the stuff of the world and i ask myself what it is made of. words. magic words. words spoken by the Infinite, words so potent, spoken by One so potent that they have weight and mass and flavor. they have taken on flesh and dwelt among us. they are us. in the Christian story, the material world came into existence at the point of speech, and that speech was ex nihilo, from nothing. God did not look around for some cosmic goo to sculpt, or another god to dice and recycle. He sang a song, composed a poem, began a novel so enormous that even the russians are dwarfed by its heaped up pages. you are spoken. i am spoken. we stand on a spoken stage. the spinning kind. the round kind. the moist kind. the kind of stage with beetles and laughter and babies and dirt and snow and fresh-cut cedar. … i’m real. i’m heavy. i’m matter. cut me and i’ll bleed. but i’m not made out of anything, and if the Magician, the Poet, the Word, if the Singer were to stop His voice, i would simply cease to be.”
— notes from the tilt-a-whirl, n.d. wilson
but for all its beauty, our world is also bruised and broken and badly bleeding. this is because of sin. so, even for those of us in whom the Spirit of God dwells, it’s all too easy to give into cynicism and be suspicious, not seeing the splendor shouting in the sunsets and not hearing the song of the starlight.
it’s easy — so frighteningly easy — to forget for what we were made.
this is why i appreciate g.k. chesterton’s novel manalive so much. it’s the story of the romantically- and mundanely-named innocent smith and his uproarious labors in pursuit of joy.
“and in this way i want to walk the world like a wonderful surprise — to float as idly as the thistledown, and come as silently as the sunrise; not to be expected any more than the thunderbolt, not to be recalled any more than the dying breeze. i don’t want people to anticipate me as a well-known practical joke. i want both my gifts to come virgin and violent, the death and the life after death. i am going to hold a pistol to the head of the modern man. but i shall not use it to kill him. only to bring him to life.”
“if innocent is happy it is because he is innocent. if he can defy the conventions it is just because he can keep the commandments. it is just because he does not want to kill, but to excite to life that a pistol is still as exciting to him as it is to a schoolboy.”
— manalive, g.k. chesterton
joy is not naivete. to be innocent is not to be ignorant. to rejoice in hope is to be a light in the darkness, a cry of triumph in the midst of this war waged against our souls.
that is what innocence abroad is for — to help me, and hopefully you, remember and rejoice in who God is, what He has made us and who He is making us. join me on this adventure, won’t you?
“but in order that life should be a story or romance to us, it is necessary that a great part of it, at any rate, should be be settled for us without our permission. … a man has control over many things in his life; he has control over enough things to be the hero of a novel. but if he had control over everything, there would be so much hero that there would be no novel. … the thing which keeps life romantic and full of fiery possibilities is the existence of these great plain limitations which force all of us to meet the things we do not like or do not expect. … to be in a romance is to be in uncongenial surroundings. to be born into this earth is to be born into uncongenial surroundings, hence to be born into a romance.”
“here i am only trying to describe the enormous emotions which cannot be described. and the strongest emotion was that life was as precious as it was puzzling. it was an ecstasy because it was an adventure; it was an adventure because it was an opportunity.”
— orthodoxy, g.k. chesterton
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