PARADOXICAL

The faith chronicles

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

 

Accursed? No, redeemed!

Have you ever felt that your life was accursed even before you were born, that is why you feel trapped in the kind of misery you're having right now? That's what I honestly have been thinking about my life of suffering (and I mean long-time existential, emotional, psychological suffering). This toxic thought was somewhat 'confirmed' when I heard my folks talking about the past sins of at least two relatives who had mocked a person for her weakness and that person audibly issued a curse for all eternity. She allegedly said, "I hope you also have a child who's a lumbering maladroit." (They actually called me lupitay and langgong in our 'vernacular' of Pangasinan.)

I strongly suspect the curse to have fallen on poor me. (Or tell me I am wrong.)

Why did it fall on me? Why did God allow it? Is it because I am the bad one or the weak one? Or is it because God deemed I am the one who is able to bear the cross? Is it because God saw that I am the one who will willingly offer everything as a sacrifice (to help in saving my wayward kin)? It's a mystery that looks like it won't ever be solved in this life. Is this thought even Christian? Whatever happened to the washing away of original sin, including the sins of my own forefathers, at baptism?

I used to deal with this mystery with some bitterness. I had my dose of the usual, "Why me, God?" "What have I done to deserve this?" But since complaining didn't work, I tried a new tack, a new strategy. How about embracing my cross?, I wondered one day.

I found out that that is easier said than done. It was more like enduring, for no one who's normal will want to drink a bitter pill. That would be masochism or sadism to self, which is another form of sickness.

Maybe I have finally found the clarity I was seeking when I saw everything under a whole new light: Am I really accursed? And if so, did I get the curse because God loves me? Could He love me so much He chose me because He believed I will be willing to love beyond the self by sharing in the carrying of His cross?

Am I deluding myself or what? Am I being messianic? But am I not just being Biblical? Not everyone who suffers is being punished; not everyone who looks like being punished is a sinner, as in the Biblical examples of the crippled man and those who perished near the fallen tower of Siloam (?).

From another perspective, specifically from the theory of problems being our own creation, could it be that this 'curse' is really my own punishment for myself, for my own mistakes? Isn't this thorn on the flesh self-inflicted, like almost all of my problems are?

I am of the strong suspicion (call it the decision of belief) that, since God allowed it, and whatever He allows is for my own good, then this thorn in the flesh is not a curse but a blessing in disguise, God's roundabout way of loving me and for me to discover love and learn how to love right.

Well, even if I turn out to be the fool from this, I will never have shortchanged myself nor anyone from loving more than I know I can bear. Because in case my suspicions prove to be true, then I win three times over: a) I will be saved, b) I will be saved together with the people I love, and c) I will make God happy for acceding to His will by way of His weird roundabout and reverse logic.

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