Bound to earth-stuff

I sat through an excellent sermon on Sunday about bitterness and the root that it is anchoring the fruit that is often seen in my life. It seems to me that if I dwell on past hurts, or let a perceived hurt or injustice dictate my mood or actions, I am subjecting myself to earth-stuff. I will always, this side of heaven, be involuntarily subjected to all sorts of physical earth-stuff - time, weather, viruses, and my ever-growing fingernails, and so much so that I will need to engage in certain activities in an attempt to overcome or circumnavigate them. For example, I run the heat in my car in the winter. That is a natural reaction to the subject that I am to the earth-stuff of the cold.

Because of the fall, there is a spiritual dimension to earth-stuff as well. Herein lies both an involuntary and voluntary component and is far different from the physical. When someone calls me a rude name I am faced with an involuntary subjection to earth-stuff. There may have been something that I did that preceded, and perhaps could explain, the name-calling, but the person that called me that name could just as well have blessed me. I am subject to the fact that a rude name has hit my ears and has been processed by my brain. I have a choice at this point to either further my subjection and cementing my allegiance and binding to this earth-stuff, or liberating myself from it. I could choose an earthly course of action or not. I can eat the fruit of the earth-stuff or not.

And isn't that what bitterness is? My compulsion to nourish my subjection to this earth-stuff? To feast on the fruit of the earth and drive the root of bitterness deeper into my heart as a result? To sit at the table with my fellow travelers and offer them a taste of my commitment to this crumbling earth?

Son of earth and son of God that I am - the uneasiness of my journey here continues.

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