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Jesus Creed

Read this and ponder — one to keep in mind.

Garret’s arms twist at sharp angles.  His eyes, vacant and
unfocused, stare fixedly away into a void, veiled windows to a soul
suddenly plunged into primordial darkness.  His brain fires primeval
charges summoned from deep within the
tohu wa bohu, his body tensing and releasing with their
staccato rhythm.  Slowly the seizure subsides and he comes back, my
little boy again inhabiting the body that betrayed him.

Nothing messes with your theology more than your own child’s
disability.  My boy has “epilepsy and apraxia of speech”:  a diagnosis
that tells me what I already know, that he has seizures and can’t
process language.  We communicate with some halting words, some signs,
some pantomime.  We medicate and wonder when the seizures will strike
again, if they will ever cease.

In the dark watches of the night my soul cries out to the Lord:  If
he “cannot hear, how can the preacher share the good news with him,” to
follow up on St. Paul’s vexing question in Romans 10?  What is “faith”
for a boy with a miswired brain?  What is “hope” for the man whose
heritage is shattered by rogue synaptic currents no one can control or
predict?

Jaideep’s arms twist at sharp angles.  His eyes, vacant and
unfocused, stare fixedly into a void.  His brain fires its last chaotic
charge, the death rattle shuddering to a stop.  Born on the trash heaps
of Mumbai, dysentery and malnutrition absorb him into their hoary
embrace.  He lived and died a Hindu without hearing of the carpenter
from Nazareth.

Where were faith, hope and love for this
eikon of God?  Is he any less precious than my epileptic apraxic boy? 

God
of the mucky stable afterbirth, bearer of sharp-glassed leather on bare
back, wearer of spit and thorns, whose arms were twisted at sharp
angles fastened with nails, abandoned, god-forsaken Son with agonized
cry for eternalperichoretic dance interrupted by Death’s convulsions: 
how will you redeem this suffering?  Do you hear Garret and Jaideep’s
cries?

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