We who preach and write, do so in a manner different from which the Scriptures have been written. We write while we make progress. We learn something new every day. We speak as we still knock for understanding...If anyone criticizes me when I have said what is right, he does me an injustice. But I would be more angry with the one who praises me and takes what I have written for Gospel truth than I would be with the one who criticizes me unfairly. -Augustine

Extreme Faith

Extreme Faith

On TV in America today, everything’s extreme: extreme makeover, extreme house-over, extreme jumping-out-of-airplanes-without-parachutes, etc. Why are we attracted to these extreme experiences? Deep within each of us is a God-shaped void. Many try to fill this void with a variety of indulgences from sex, gambling, food, media, and extreme activities. The more extreme the activity, the better the adrenalin rush, but emptier we become. Rather than filling the void, the more self destructive we become.

The early church father Augustine once prayed, “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.” Only God can truly satisfy,

King David in Psalm 131 understood extremeness and its dangers when he writes: “O LORD, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me. But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me.”

When I first pondered this idea of a weaned child, I incorrectly thought of a baby being satisfied after his bottle of milk. But then I realized that a weaned child is one who is no longer dependant upon his bottle. A child before he is weaned cries to have his needs fulfilled. He is unable to communicate verbally, so he cries until his needs are met. Then I realized that it is not only because of his lack of verbal skills that he cries, but because of a lack of trust. A child becomes weaned when he realizes that he is going to be cared for by his mother. His extreme behavior for attention decreases, resulting in the calmness of soul that David writes about in his song.

In a day of extreme need, it’s time to calm and quiet our soul, like a weaned child with its mother.

Published in: on March 23, 2011 at 12:34 pm  Comments (1)  

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