“A Light That Is Well Placed Does Not Repel Others…”

There’s been a lot of buzz lately about Strange Gods, the first book by our own Elizabeth Scalia.  (I’m working my way through it now and hope to write about it in the next few days; I can report that my wife, who rarely reads anything other than her Bible, read the book in one sitting on our flight to Los Angeles last week!)

Anyway…Kathryn Lopez has her own take on the book and its relevance to our times:

“If the nation is troubled and if our polarization is stranding us, we must ask whether it’s because we are enthralled with our ideas and ideologies, obscuring God and leaving no room for the Holy Spirit to maneuver,” author Elizabeth Scalia writes in her new book Strange Gods: Unmasking the Idols in Everyday Life.

“We Christians are not suppose to hide our lights under a bushel basket,” she continues, “and we’re also not supposed to glare at others, sending them scurrying back into the shadows.”

She points to the Transfiguration as a model, where “Jesus’ dazzling brightness did not sting the eyes of the apostles.”

“A light that is well placed does not repel others; it attracts from out of darkness,” Scalia adds.

“Too many of us,” she cautions, “haul the light of Christ about like a burning cross, seeking to confront ‘them’ and repair the times, believing that political engagement is the perfect impetus for correction.”

“Increasingly,” she reflects, “I am coming to realize that the corny old song, ‘Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me,’ is speaking a truth.” She bolsters the contention with Pope Benedict XVI, who has said: “God does not force us to believe in him, but draws us to himself through the truth and goodness of his incarnate Son.”

And Lopez concludes:

And they will know we are Christians by our love. And they will know what that means if they see it made manifest in our lives!

Check out the rest over at Catholic Voices.  And you will want to check out Elizabeth’s book, too.  The Anchoress is on to something here—something important that demands attention.


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