So down that I slept 20 of 24 hours and despaired of the other 4. Despair. What does Bertrand Russell know of despair? What does the writer of Hank know of despair? Unyielding despair so corrosive that it didn’t leave me desperate.
I’m crying again. It’s been a very long time since I confessed those words and everything behind them. By now you understand why I will not, can not stand in judgment over you and Russell. By now you understand why I can love you both courageously – – even if you think you’re walking away. I can’t write anymore J. It’s unusual for me to feel this way. I’m exhausted but content. I know that God is real. I know that scripture is reliable. I hope to be a saint that honestly presents himself as once wretched, now redeemed by amazing grace. Thanks for being my friend. I hope this didn’t shock you. You realize that I needed to write it more than you needed to read it.
Always in Christ – – Pascal –1:16
P.S. So there it is. A two year old letter about foundational events in my life a quarter century ago. Why did I write it? To testify to where I came from and why I needed to turn. I think that suffering is part of life. Buddhism does not resonate with me because the avoidance of suffering is not a noble path. To suffer with another in compassion is. That’s who Jesus is to me. He reached into my wreck of a life and loved me. Then he told me through scripture to love others like he had loved me. I was not easy to love. Others are not easy to love. But it does make sense to me. It is internally consistent and resonates with my experience, heart, soul, mind and strength. Does personal experience give me an airtight reason to believe and complete immunization against doubt? Of course not. But to deny this influence would be false. It is certainly part of my reason to follow Christ and to love. I’m willing to let the other parts unfold over years.
Photo credit: Handwritten letter by Descarte: by PHGCOM [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) via Wikimedia Commons