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Abiding by the Open Side of Christ
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We can contemplate Christ’s open side because it was an action of Divine Truth but what truth is seizing upon to “behold” is love. “With Christ divine love comes to occupy the place of Logos (reason) in the Greek world.” –Adrian Walker
So we “look upon Him whom they have pierced” because it radiates divine and anthropological truth and thus comes to the eye of the mind as beautiful. Such beholding leads us to the lover’s questions: Who ARE You?, Where did you come from? …and now Who am I?
“Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” (Jn 1:29)
Our deepest wound is our separation from God, from the truth about ourselves, from the dignity and worth of others…Christ, in his humanity, enters all these separations upon the cross and offers himself in love to the Father for the healing of humanity. It is His Goodness that heals, Goodness that has its origin in God and its display in the human actions of Christ’s own love. We who are not “good” now can enter and participate in a communion with the one who is only good and thus be restored to God, self and others.
When we behold the Lamb of God we are beholding the new Adam healing our relational wound which keeps us from God, and He does so from within our own humanity (the Incarnation). God did not want to heal us by “fiat” or by magic…but by our consent so that humanity and divinity could have real communion.
As we behold the love of God for us upon the cross…our hearts break, leaving room, finally, for the Spirit of God to reach us…in our sorrow and in our awe over God’s beautiful love all impediments to receptivity are healed. We finally receive Mercy and then seek penance. We WANT to be one with Him as opposed to being in “rebellion.”
This “heart breaking,” which is life giving, is a form of our own cruciform receptivity (levering) in which we are gifted with communion with God in the midst our struggle to surrender all our false hiding places and enter the only true one….his open side.
Reflections written by Deacon James Keating