No perfect structures, no perfect people

If you only look at us, you might well miss the brightness (of Christ). We carry this precious Message around in the unadorned clay pots of our ordinary lives.

2 Corinthians 4:7 (The Message)


Two crosses, Bridget Braybrooks

There are no perfect structures and there are no perfect people.  There is only the struggle to get there.  It is Christ’s passion (patior, the “suffering of reality”) that will save the world...Redemptive suffering instead of redemptive violence is the Jesus way. Patience comes with our attempts to hold together an always-mixed reality, not from expecting or demanding perfect reality.

Richard Rohr, Hope against darkness.

The suffering of reality

"There are no perfect structures and there are no perfect people."  Why am I surprised by this?  Or by pain, by imperfection and misunderstanding, be it in myself or others or institutions?  I need bald statements like Rohr's to keep me from ducking from reality, selectively sifting out fraying ends from neat cords, sharp from smooth, God from not-God, ordinary from exotic.  The rough splinters of the cross are a coarse reminder that brokenness and reality rub up against each other.  The smooth gold cross touches the rotten and broken one and this somehow reduces my unreasonable ego-led demand on life, self and others.  I relax and laugh and hopefully become a little more humble.  And then I need to be reminded again!

Flights of fancy and the patience of redemption

We aim to separate pain from living.  On one level that is surely right calling on our indignation and compassion to respond.  On another it seems to deny a reality that stares us in the face, though we would naturally flinch and turn from it.  The message of the cross however is a message of both redemption and reality.  Everyone, absolutely everyone, experiences pain of some sort, at some time. I wonder if we search for utopia, some perfect reality.