Those of you who know Gerv but don't follow his blog might want to read his latest post. It's called Thank God For Cancer
. And with a title like that, people who don't know Gerv might want to read it too.
Gerv follows the kind of Christianity that most 21st
century liberals, which would be most of my flist, to a greater or lesser degree, despise or even hate. His theology is about everybody going to Hell except him and a handful of people who very precisely share his beliefs (which are not exactly liberal fluffy doctrine, as you might guess). Gerv is also a wonderful person, kind, thoughtful, generous... intelligent too, but lots of my friends are bright; it's in moral qualities that he's exceptional. And he's very sick; he may be completely serene about it, but I'm not!
I'm not saying that post is a fantastic piece of theology; it's really not. But it's a fairly impressive statement of personal faith. Comments on this are restricted, but not completely disabled. I hope I don't need to mention that I do not expect anyone to insult my friend.
|Date:||April 3rd, 2006 03:09 pm (UTC)|
6 hours after journal entry
I admire him for his courage, and thank God each day that He has not (so far) permitted me to suffer something like cancer. Every now and then I read about people who face terrifying diseases with grace and love and acceptance, and can only shiver - and not in a good way either - at how different my attitude would probably be if I were in that situation.
Wasn't it Mother Teresa who said something like "I know God only gives me as much to deal with as I can handle; I sometimes wish He didn't trust me so much."?
Thank God for people like your friend: when I'm laid up for a day because of a (comparatively piffling) back ailment, it's people like him that remind me that even though it might not make sense to my pithy idea of a complete logic system, God will permit things for a reason, to make them an opportunity to show God to the world and to increase an individual's sanctity.
|Date:||April 7th, 2006 10:16 am (UTC)|
4 days after journal entry
Hehe, Whore of Babylon, perhaps? Yes, perhaps a personal introduction wouldn't be wise: I'm a sensitive soul, especially when not shielded by the internet, and I wouldn't want to become upset! Although I do wonder if I qualify to Gerv as a Christian, and thus whether he considers my prayers for him as having any kind of worth at all. Ah well - prayer is the only and best way that I can help him through his illness, and I'll stick to it.
By the by, you made a comment up there about seeing suffering as a good thing. Might I point you to a post
that a friend of mine, dunmoose
, wrote earlier in Lent? It's about suffering too. dunmoose
came to Catholicism from many years in another Christian tradition (I don't mention its name because I've forgotten it, rather than that I might find it unworthy of mention) and that post talks a little about the difference between the Catholic and non-Catholic Christian views of suffering. I am lucky (perhaps blessed is a better word) to have been Catholic since a very young age, so I haven't thought a huge deal about this - although I must say that I'm inspired to now.
Of course it may just repeat what you already know, and not give you any new insight, for which I apologise.