Shadow of God ~ BitterSweetLife

Monday, September 19, 2005

Shadow of God

I have this picture of Christ as a standing stone, a rock that casts an inky shadow across the world, transecting the poles, the equator, and your heart. If you swear allegiance, you shelter yourself from the heat. If you defy him, you’re forever running from the “darkness.”

As with all truths, this one has two aspects. Does this shadow, cast by granite Deity, refresh or obscure? That depends on your perspective or, one could argue, on the depth of your perception.

Few will willingly walk into a shadow that will end in death. But to encounter Christ is, inevitably, to die. Enter his shadow, and all self-constructed axes of existence begin to fall apart. Such a cost is too high for most, even though this death leads to life. Christ is the source of wonder, joy, and (presently) hope, but the transitory pain of self-sacrifice is a real deterrent.

The Bible says as much. Jesus’ disciple, Peter, characterized him as “a stone to trip over, a boulder blocking the way” (1 Peter 2:8, MSG). Christ is a way-stone that marks a sharply diverging road. We all encounter the shadow of this rock, and to enter it, to approach Christ, will cause a kind of death.

Some will recoil from the apparent gloom. Others will endure the momentary chill of Jesus’ shade, understanding that irrepressible life lies over the border.

* Inspired by a sermon, “Encounter with a Stone,” by John Vanderhorst

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Culture. Photos. Life's nagging questions. - BitterSweetLife