Monday, February 26, 2007

Some good excerpts from Madeleine L'Engle

Here are a few excerpts from Madeleine L'Engle's book Penguins and Golden Calves. These passages really resonate with me. Some of them remind me of the way I have recently witnessed Christians on certain blog sites talking to and about one another. They also remind me of things I have seen in myself.

What I believe is so magnificent, so glorious, that it is beyond finite comprehension. To believe that the universe was created by a purposeful, benign Creator is one thing. To believe that this Creator took on human vesture, accepted death and mortality, was tempted, betrayed, broken, and all for love of us, defies reason. It is so wild that it terrifies some Christians who try to dogmatize their fear by lashing out at other Christians, because a tidy Christianity with all the answers given is easier than one which reaches out to the wild wonder of God's love, a love we don't even have to earn. (pg. 31)

Right now "Christians" are filled with hate as they eagerly look for things to condemn in other Christians, descending to malicious name-calling and angry accusations . . . . .(pg. 71)

"Good" and "moral" Christians know exactly what the rules are, and any infringement, or seeming infringement, brings fear and its concomitant following attack against whoever has broken the rules or behaved in what is considered an immoral way. But what about Jesus? He knew what the rules were, and he cared about them; the law mattered to him. But when it was a question of love, love superseded law. He knew what morality was, and it mattered to him, but he cared more about love and repentance than legalism. Those Christians who are attacking other Christians are being obedient to an unquestioned authority and defining themselves and others by a rigid morality. Only Christ can free us from the prison of legalism, and then only if we are willing to be freed. (pg. 85)

1 comment:

thekid said...

Wow, I appreciate the way L'Engle's indictments can be so on target and unwilling to compromise and leave room for our tendency to religiosity. It is convicting, even if I wish I could say I am never guilty of this.