Written by Sherry
Thursday, 07 February 2008 09:43
Received a tee shirt in the mail yesterday from a wonderful, long term fan of the Institute's work.
It reads: "Jesus loves you - but I'm his favorite."
Couldn't help but laugh. Especially in light of the discussion that Fr. Mike and I had yesterday about our upcoming parish missions. Our life and spiritual stories could not be more different.
He, the cradle Catholic never-left-the Church-makes Eagle-Scouts-look-dissipated-mid-western boy who has done everything right and whose life has been remarkably free of tragedy or great loss.
Or me - whose life has not been - well - like that. Even as a small child.
So who is Jesus's favorite?
In my lowest moments, there is sometimes no question in my mind about who got favorite child status.
But is that true?
Jesus had some pretty clear things to say about who was God's favorites. But it can be very hard to hold onto in real life.
Of course, at the end of all our journeys, none of that will matter. For obvious reasons, I have always been very fond of
C. S. Lewis's idea in his fantasy: The Great Divorce: that heaven once achieved, works backwards.
"Ye can get some likeness of it if you say that both good and evil, when they are full grown, become retrospective. . .all this earthly past will have been heaven to those who are saved. . .all their life on earth, too, will then be seen by the damned to have been Hell.
Both processes begin even before death. The good man's past begins to change so that his forgiven sins and remembered sorrows take on the quality of Heaven. . . .Ah, the saved. What happens to them is best described as the opposite of a mirage. What seemed, when they entered it, to be the vale of misery turns out, when they look back, to have been a well and where present experience saw only salt deserts memory truthfully records that the wells were full of water."
Which means, providing we both end up in the same eternal home, it won't much matter how different our journeys were. Because both of us will discover that we were the cherished, if unlikely, apple of God's eye.