Saturday, December 22, 2018

Christmas C.M. Countdown, Day 22

"How is the Soul of a man to be satisfied? Crowned kings have thrown up dominion because they want that which is greater than kingdoms...There is no satisfaction for the Soul of a man, save one, because the things about him are finite, measurable, incomplete; and his reach is beyond his grasp; he has an urgent, incessant, irrepressible need of the infinite." (Ourselves Book II, p. 175)
Charlotte Mason asks a hard question for "religious" people: when we say that that empty space inside us cannot be satisfied outside of relationship with God, are we referring only to a one-time prayer of salvation? Or do we have more to give, and more to gain? She obviously believes so:
"We have within us an infinite capacity for love, loyalty, and service; but we are deterred, checked on every hand, by limitations in the objects of our love and service. It is only to our God that we can give the whole, and only from Him can we get the love we exact; a love which is like the air, an element to live in, out of which we gasp and perish." (p. 176)
Mason offers a few thoughts on coming to faith, and warnings for complacent Christians. (We might say this is her version of the Parable of the Sower.) She previously told us to be "alert," and now she warns us not to be "inert." Spiritual sluggishness can happen to any soul. She also warns against "such preoccupation of Mind or Heart as leaves no room for the dominating and engrossing thought of God" (pp. 178-179). Do we need God? Do we want God? Is there room for Him in our hearts?
 "Let us hold fast our loyalty, knowing that this, of making with our Will deliberate choice of God, is the only offering we can make Him; knowing, too, for our comfort, that involuntary aversion is not sin, and only gives us occasion for choice; but, when we choose to turn away, our sin does not put us without the limits of mercy, but it is immeasurably great" (p. 181).
The third danger to the soul is aversionWe are fallen human beings. We struggle with a desire for sin that pushes us away from all that is good (Romans 7:15-17). But celebrate with this thought: God gave us free will.

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