Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Flavour of Life

"No man has tasted the flavour of life until he has known poverty, love, and war."
~ O. Henry

Something about this quotation both resonated with me, and rankled me. The chord it struck is a dissonant one in that there are such things as poverty and war. There is in love the possibility for unrequited love. God did not make us for those things; He made us to create, to be loved and to love, to experience His riches and fullness. 

Then we grasped for something that appealed to our eyes, to our desire to become wise. In that very act, we severed every relationship we had with God, with our fellow man, with the earth and its creatures, and even with ourselves. We became fragmented beings rather than whole persons. We became less human, not more. We are not "only human" when we fail, we are less than human. After all, God sent His Son to be the Redeemer of the world, and He came as a man; fully human, fully alive, whole.

 O. Henry's quotation rankles in that it is true of us in a fallen world. Now life includes things that we were never intended to experience; not work or hard things, we were always intended to have those. However, now we experience violence, war, poverty, starvation, cruelty, and death. We weren't made for that.

But... There is a Redeemer Who will stand death on its head and give life the victory. There is a just Judge Who will not only condemn the guilty, but pay the penalty they owe if they will receive Him as both Lord and Saviour. There is hope. There is hope that one day the flavour of life will not be tainted by sin, pride, and death. We wait expectantly in that Hope.

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. (Col. 3.1-3)

~ Johanna

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