Acquiring a few virtues that might make us better friends to the wandering crowds seems to many a very drawn-out process. But Jesus stays close to our half-hearted attempts. It is he who makes us capable of a thankful life caught up within the immensity of God’s goodness.
“To see my deformities in the mirror of truth,
The life of Jesus Christ,
To see them, Lord,
In that blinding light!
Once I looked upon myself as a person of some importance
And my self-esteem helped to brighten my days.
I saw my charity – Love half-spoiled;
One look and my world dissolved
In dizzying, turbulent confusion.
In that mirror I saw my notion of justice –
A denial of true virtue, robbing God of his honour.
Though outwardly orderly and composed,
The heart, ever bolder, coveted all;
Its flood waters had submerged reason,
The reason it was meant to serve.
In your light, O Lord, I have seen my nothingness,
My less than nothingness. The vision compels humility.
….I cannot be reborn unless I first die to myself.
O glorious state, in the quiet centre of the void,
The intellect and emotions at rest!
I cannot swim in that ocean of fathomless depths,
I will sink beneath the waves, a man drowned.
Overwhelmed by… my sweet Lord,
I settle into the sands at the bottom of the sea.” (Laud 39)
Gratitude for recognising Christ as Lord within the vastness of God is the fullest art of celebration.