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As Lent Begins: The Tumbledown Love

His Majesty will do it; He will not wait to discuss all the ways you have failed Him—there is time for that, an Eternity for that, later. If you allow Him to, if you let Him in, He will change you, and bathe you in His immense tenderness. If you are laying in a gutter, like Eszterhas, you can call on Him, trusting in the words of Isaiah 38:17: ". . . you have saved me from the pit of destruction, when you cast behind your back, all of my sins."

Yes, it is a mystery. It is beyond all of our knowing, which is why—no matter how tempted we sometimes are to lay with the Pharisees—we ultimately cannot. We must, ultimately err on the side of mercy, because mercy is what we all seek, and leave Justice to the One who may be trusted to know what that is.

I sometimes hate my humanness, which keeps me so earth-bound, so hide-bound to my stubborn judgments, my weaknesses, my sins. But I love my humanness, because it forces me to trust His Majesty, and all of his ways, which are all-Good. I will stumble. Every day I will stumble. Every day I will need forgiveness. Every day, I will understand my need to surrender because I am so helpless, so useless. Every day I will need pardon. Every day, will be the same day, as He is the same, even though everything has become so different.

Especially because everything is different.

"His love is so strong . . ."

As evidenced by all of this blather, I have nothing to add to those five words.

3/9/2011 5:00:00 AM
Elizabeth Scalia
About Elizabeth Scalia
Elizabeth Scalia is a weekly columnist at First Things.