A Penitent Blogger

Mindful of my imperfections, seeking to know Truth more deeply and to live Love more fully.

Quid sum miser tunc dicturus? Quem patronum rogaturus? Cum vix iustus sit securus?
Recordare, Iesu pie, Quod sum causa tuae viae: Ne me perdas illa die...

Sunday, July 04, 2004

The Body

There’s the story of a boy whose grandfather told him about the inner beauty of trees, how their branches were like hands lifted up to God and how walking in a forest was like walking in a cathedral. However, the boy’s life took a dark turn and he grew to think about trees only as things: things to be used, things to be shaped, things to be sold. He no longer saw trees as creatures pointing up to God. His thoughts and his heart stayed below.

Many of us are like that little boy, but it is not the godly beauty of trees with which we’ve lost touch, but something much more important, something that points much more eloquently to God. We’ve lost touch with the godly beauty of ourselves and our human bodies. Tragically, human bodies in today’s culture have become just things: things to be coveted, things to be reshaped, objects of selfishness. Thus, in our spiritual lives, bodies distract us: they drag us down and away from God.

Like the boy who can no longer see the godly beauty in a tree, we may have damaged or destroyed our sense of the godliness in ourselves, in the people we see and in our bodies.

We need to reclaim for God our attitude to the human body. Like everything else we have and are, the prime focus of the human body should not be to feel good, but to be good, to do good, and to help bring us to God.

We can recapture that sense of beauty, that understanding of real value, that presence of God in ourselves and in our bodies. We can find it again through purity, charity, and the grace of Jesus Christ.