August 22, 2014

Object Lesson

There are things that you are, and things that you are not. 

You are not an animal that devours others. You are not at the mercy of your urges, be they biological or emotional. You are not merely a sexual being, nor are you merely a robot for production; you are far more. You are not a piece of meat and metal available for consumption by others, for their visual or tactile or emotional pleasure. You are not an object to be moved around by the flights and fancy of those who see you as one. You are not meant to be the object of fantasy, nor are you to treat others as the objects of fantasy.

Hear it again: you are not an object.

And you are not alone.

You are free, or rather, you have been freed. Not by yourself or for yourself, but with others and for others. You are capable of beautiful dreams, of creativity and compassion and empathy, of generosity and gentleness, of self-control and mercy. You are capable of dependence on one greater than yourself, for it is not under your own power or authority, but under the One who has freed you.

You are part of a community, whether you know it or not. You are the son, daughter, child, father, mother, grandfather, grandmother, aunt, uncle, cousin, granddaughter, or grandson of another human being. And you must always remember to look at others in that same way; don't look at them, see them. There is more to you than the way others describe you. You are loved without hesitation or condition. And you are given the task of loving others likewise.

You are a child of God.

Today, and the day after that, and the day after that, from now forward, you are Eschat Chayil (woman of valor) and Ish Gibor Chayil (mighty man of valor). May you live up to that name! May it become your identity, child of God. May you live out of what you are, instead of what you are not. May it inspire you forward, carry you through the times when encouragement is sparse, and overflow into others in times of plenty. May others catch your enthusiasm, be it a vociferous shout or a quiet confidence. And may you tell this story others, and so doing, draw them into the ekklesia, the community of the freed.

1 comment:

g said...

Thanks, Chris.