Monday, October 20, 2008

Monday, October 20, 2008

Today’s text

John 8:31-32

To the Jews who believed in him Jesus said: 'If you make my word your home you will indeed be my disciples; you will come to know the truth, and the truth will set you free.'


The heart makes its home, somewhere. This has always been true, Jesus. There is always a place where our hearts try to make their beds.

The list of possible places is far too long to recount, dear Friend. I haven’t the energy to discover and list all the places in which my heart has sought its home.

For years, no, decades, my heart sought its home in the impressions I made on others, trying out one façade or another. Why should I think that I could make myself more real by impressing others with insights or art, acts of courage or adventure, by appearing more caring or committed than I really am?

I don’t know, but I did. It’s crazy.

For reasons lost in childhood, hidden in my genes or in the tragedy of human fallenness, I imagined my reality was dependent upon the opinions of others--as if one’s real life resides in the impressions one can create in their minds.

It’s an illusion of course, and it enslaves millions. We recognize it when something points it out to us, but most of the time we are powerless to free ourselves from its grasp.

We go on trying to make ourselves what we are not, convincing others we are more real, intelligent, accomplished or important than we are--and fighting off slights to our self-respect and inflated egos. But all the time we know our secrets--and become less real with every word and action calculated for its affect on others.

There are innumerable ways we fashion homes in which to dwell--power, influence, wealth, status, intelligence, accomplishment or experience. We use them all to feather our psychic nests, as if we could settle in and feel at rest, at peace, at home, at last.

But ultimately, we cannot. They all fail us in one way or another, sooner or later. And the illusions we project drain us of energy until our life force is spent.

But you offer another way, dear Friend. Rest and home reside in you. You invite us to make our homes in your word, your truth, your reality, there to find the freedom of soul you alone give, the freedom that rests in your love alone.

The thought of it warms my heart. And my mind and body releases the tight grip I keep on myself and my public identity.

So this is freedom.

If so, let me make my home in your word, in your truth--in you. For beyond the ways and places I have sought to make a home for my heart, you are the place where I am truly welcome and finally free.

Pr. David L. Miller

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