I am progressing along the path of life in my ordinary contentedly fallen and godless condition... when suddenly a stab of abdominal pain that threatens serious disease, or a headline in the newspapers that threatens us all with destruction, sends this whole pack of cards tumbling down. At first I am overwhelmed, and all my little happinesses look like broken toys.
Then, slowly and reluctantly, bit by bit, I try to bring myself into the frame of mind that I should be in at all times. I remind myself that all these toys were never intended to possess my heart, that my true good is in another world and my only real treasure is Christ. And perhaps, by God’s grace, I succeed, and for a day or two become a creature consciously dependent on God and drawing its strength from the right sources.
But the moment the threat is withdrawn, my whole nature leaps back to the toys... And that is why tribulations will not cease until God either sees us remade or sees that our remaking is hopeless. —C.S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain, p106
In a culture where
is a big deal,
Sodom has become a familiar word.
Even if you don't know anything else about the Bible
you've probably heard
the story of Sodom.
Some folks say
Sodom's sin was homosexuality.
Other folks say
the real shame is
nobody knows the other story of Sodom:
the one where they were
sodomized by a gang of neighboring kings
attacked and invaded and clobbered
overpowered and crushed and defiled—
the one where they were left
naked and helpless and defenseless
victimized and paralyzed and weak—
recovered their possessions
rebuilt their cities
and restored their fortunes.
Sodom's first encounter with God
did not end in
In their calamity
(when all their broken toys were
momentarily swept aside
to reveal the One
on whom they unconsciously depended)
a God who delivers, not destroys,
a God who heals, not hates.
Nice to meet you, they said
then quickly leapt back to the toys,
till even their hearts were bound.