Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Piercing the Darkness

I'm part way through a Frank Peretti novel. Like any human book of fiction there are problems with it, but I am captivated by the story of Sally Beth Roe, a young woman who had committed a terrible crime but, because she had been schooled in extreme post-modern thought, she was "void of conscience, without remorse... A child in an infinite yard with no fence, the center of her own universe..." Still "the spirits had found her: Despair, Death, Insanity... 'Murderer,' they said, 'worthless, guilty... why don't you give it all up.'"

It's at that moment that "her hand fell from her lap and thumped gently against" something that was hard and unyielding.  "I could pretend," she thought, "Just for the sake of discussion, I could pretend that this is a fence, a limitation, a boundary."

Her post-modern schooling, however, didn't allow for boundaries.  Her well trained self said "Ah, come on... There are no absolutes; you can't know anything for sure..."

But, for some reason, at that point she cried out to God.  "I need a fence," she cried, "Even if I'm on the wrong side of it, I need a fence... because at least then I'd know where I am."

Here are a few lines from page 207.
She rested against the hard plaster wall again, panting in hurt, anger, and despair.

"O God, help me!"

The spirit of Despair slipped and fell.  His talons had lost their grip.

...She didn't know if she felt better.  She felt a little foolish...
But somehow that was the beginning of a change for Sally Beth Roe.  Somehow, that was the first step in leaving the darkness of her own ways behind.

Tonight, if you feel despair, pray.  Really pray.  Cry out to God.  Know that there is something solid, something permanent, something firm.  And know, because of Jesus, that "something," though firm and immovable, is full of love for sinners like you and me.

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