Sunday, April 13, 2008

The Difference Between Me and God

When I see suffering, I try to fix it. Well, that's not quite true. I don't try to fix it, but I stand around wondering why someone doesn't fix it. The upshot is that I think of suffering as a problem to be solved.

In my worst moments, I look to God and say, "Why haven't you solved suffering?" Sometimes I get angry, especially after reading the newspapers. How could people do such things? Where is God?

God, being a gentleman, does not point out to me that I haven't solved suffering either. Rather, God does things in a way I never would have. He doesn't get rid of suffering at all; God becomes man and goes to a horrible but completely voluntary death. He sanctifies suffering by undergoing it. Suffering is no longer an evil---no, that's not right: it still is an evil, but an evil which God has made good.

Think about that for a minute. How is it that God chose to act in the world? He chose the lowest, worst, most evil part of human existence, namely the suffering that we inflict on each other, and made it the means to the highest thing imaginable, the participation in God's very nature. The cosmic irony is that Pilate and Caiaphas at their worst were bringing about the best, a superlative good beyond comprehension.

1 comment:

Joe said...

Oh happy fault, oh necessary sin...

One of the most jarring and compelling moments in the Vigil.