Quantum Physics, Chocolate, and the Incarnation
I've been feeling like a proton lately. I don't know whether I'm a particle or a wave. I'm in a circular state of mind, and whenever I try to figure out where I'm at, I can't tell if I've always been there or if my self-observation has changed my location and direction, like the poor self-conscious protons.
As far as eating properly, this week was sort of a wash. Not entirely, as I still implemented certain basic principles, but nevertheless... I never did my customary food shopping on Saturday, so I quickly ran out of things to cook and eat. Not that I was really motivated to cook for several days. The emotional drain from Friday night and the anxiety-inducing amounts of homework I've been juggling have been interesting. I've never had an actual "panic attack" per se, but on Wednesday, my anxiety got so bad that the only way I could show up to and sit through my 2:00 was to make a thermos of hot cocoa and take it with me to drink during class. Chocolate has an interesting level of power over me. Once I start eating it, I either end up eating it almost every day or I have to swear off of it entirely. It's very satisfying in the short term, but eventually wreaks havoc in large quantities. Plus have I mentioned it's addictive?
I know I haven't been posting much on the actual forum lately. At the moment, I just don't feel like it. I'm too preoccupied with the required aspects of my existence to engage in making public statements that may or may not matter. Then what am I doing here? Funny you should ask. There's something appealing about a vacuum where you can try out your thoughts while maintaining some dignity because any random person might read them. Freaky thought. Remind me not to say anything stupid. Oh, too late.
Next week, I'm hoping for a more balanced existence. This week, I'm cutting myself some much-needed slack. But even as I'm neglecting some physical duties, I've improved in others (exercise and sleep), and have been pursuing spiritual peace as well.
Tonight, I had to write a short essay related to one of my class readings. The reading had to do with the incarnation of Christ - when God became a man. It's one of the most scandalous and beautiful ideas in the universe. As I wrote my response to one of the subjects covered in the reading, I experienced a rare moment of clarity. The teacher suggested we write about 250 words and told us we would be graded on conciseness, so as I wrote, I made an effort to be specific and concise (something I've become lazy about). And when I got to the end, I felt satisfied. I had said what I wanted to say in the way I wanted to say it, and I'd opened my own mind to new thoughts in the process. And the content matched the beat of my heart, the expansion and contraction of my lungs. Being loved by my Creator and loving him back is who I am. If nothing else makes sense and my life path hides behind the fog of uncertainty, I know the central truth that will guide me where I need to go.
Holiness and Love
Certain theological errors regarding salvation spring up when people assume God’s attributes are separate from one another. People who emphasize God’s holiness at the expense of his love create a merciless, unfeeling god. Alternately, people who emphasize love over holiness diminish or obliterate the threat of hell to sinners and weaken the awesome perfection of God. Neither view accurately represents God or the salvation he provides in Christ.
The Son personified God’s holiness and love equally in the incarnation. Throughout his ministry on earth, Jesus dealt harshly with those who misrepresented the character and holiness of God. He rebuked the Pharisees for adding commands to the law and claiming they were God’s commands. He cleansed the temple from all who made it a “den of thieves.” His death demonstrated to what lengths the infinite holiness of God would go to ensure justice was served.
But his death and life also demonstrated an infinite love, simultaneously and equally a part of the holy God. Jesus had compassion on multitudes, healing them, feeding them, and telling them the way to eternal life. He wept for a dead friend he would revive minutes later. He welcomed children and engaged a Samaritan woman in conversation. And he took on a human body, lived out thirty-three years of human life perfectly, and offered himself up to take every human sin as his own and die. Then he rose as a human, giving us hope of our own resurrection, and ascended to heaven to intercede for his human brothers and sisters as both God and man.
Those who reduce salvation to an act of holiness or an act of love miss the wonder of what God did for us. The incarnation allowed both components of God’s nature to continue in their integrity, uncontradicted and uncontradictory. God remained himself by becoming one of us.