It took me a long time to make my way through Marcus Borg’s book “The Heart of Christianity.” I’d gotten stuck about midway and had almost consigned it a place on my bookshelf. A friend’s words about the book encouraged me to pick it up once again. I’m so glad I did.
Borg talks about the “hatching of the heart, ” the transformation God works in us, when we open our hearts to God. He comments that we have taken too small a view of the Biblical images of salvation. While most of us think of salvation as God’s forgiveness for our sin, he reminds us of the many other images of Jesus which are also are part of the scriptures: Jesus came to be light in the dark moments of life; give sight to blind eyes, to set us free from the stuff that holds us captive; to welcome us whenever we return from the far country. Salvation includes our finding a home in God and being resurrected from the land of the living dead we have consigned ourselves to. Borg says that salvation is really about being “saved from our predicament.”
I don’t know about you, but there are days I know I need to be saved from my predicament. I need a savior. A real savior. I need God’s saving grace to save me from predicament’s I have landed in. I need that grace when my thoughts and actions do not reflect what I profess to believe. I have needed grace, when I’ve wandered away from God.
We need God’s saving power in those moments we realize that we are not at all where we are meant to be. Instead we are in a predicament in a far country of the heart. We need light in our darkness and sight for our blind eyes. The good news is that in Jesus Christ, God provides a way out of our predicaments. God simply asks us to open our hearts to the truths and wisdom that will lead us out of our messes and into God’s arms.