“…we must also accept the reality of our incompleteness.”
Gerald G. May M.D. From his book “Addiction and Grace.” He starts in,
“We can and should do our very best to move in that direction, (to achieve the state of perfection.) struggling with every resource we have. but…”we need to recognize that the incompleteness in us, our personal insufficiency, does not make us unacceptable in God’s eyes.” “Far from it, our incompleteness is the empty side of our longing for God and for love. It is what draws us toward love and one another.”
“if we do not fill our minds with guilt and self-recriminations, we will recognize our incompleteness as a kind of spaciousness into which we can welcome the flow of grace.” “We can think of our inadequacies as terrible defects, if we want, and hate ourselves. But we can also think of them affirmatively, as doorways through which the power of grace can enter our lives.”
Let’s consider the power of these words, spoken by Dr. May.
“To be alive is to be addicted, and to be alive and be addicted is to stand in the need of grace.”
What is addiction?
First, lets consider what is free volition? ” given to us for a purpose…so that we may choose freely, without coercion or manipulation, to love God in return, and to love one another…this is the deepest desire of our hearts.” May
“psychologically, addiction uses up desire…sucking our life’s energy into specific obsessions and compulsions.” “spiritually, addiction is a deep-seated form of idolatry.” “Addiction then displaces and supplants God’s love as the source and object of our deepest true desire.”
In The Jerusalem Bible at Matthew 5:48 the translator interprets, “…you must set no bounds to your love,” instead of “be ye perfect.” This Bible is a paraphrase, yes, but introduces a compelling thought. God’s love has no bounds, and neither should ours.
So, lets regroup. What are we saying?
The attachments, which we nail ourselves to, take away our ability to receive love freely, give love freely; in fact, we lose, in degrees, our free-volition altogether. However, as we look aside from our inadequacies and incompleteness, (only in light of the cross of Christ and His dying in our place can we do this), we throw off guilt and condemnation, apply forgiveness and the Blood of Christ, and we open the door to again renew a heart desire –to love and be loved by God.
This is the secret, God is the secret, love is the secret. God’s expression of love is through grace .
“A certain asceticism of mind, a gentle intellectual restraint, is needed to appreciate the important things in life. To be open to the truth of love, we must relinquish our frozen comprehensions and begin instead to appreciate. To comprehend is to grasp; to appreciate is to value. Appreciation is gentle seeing, soft acknowledgement, reverent perception. Appreciation can be a pleasant valuing: being awed by a night sky, touched by a symphony, or moved by a caress without needing to understand why. It can also be painful: feeling someone’s suffering, being shocked by loss or disaster without comprehending the reason. Appreciation itself is a kind of love; it is our direct human responsiveness, valuing what we cannot grasp. Love, the life of our heart … It is always ready to surprise us..”
Friends, put your arm around concepts, precepts, receipts, or any “cepts” in general. These will not quell your addictive behavioral patterns.
Our response systems are broken.
Yes, words sometimes evoke a flurry of emotion, music can bring an admiration. Nevertheless, our appreciators are waiting for love, true love, the kind only God can give and back up with a guarantee. His love finds manifestation in His grace which implies: there are no conditions, no famine, peril, nakedness, sword, death, life, angels, principalities, powers, things present, things to come, height, depth — nor any other creature that shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Let’s let the living God thrill us. He is worth it all. Amen!! love ya