Thursday, September 6, 2007

Good or Good for Nothing?

So, over the weekend I read The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom.

When I was finished, I was struck, once again, by the goodness in the Ten Boom family. Such true Christ-like goodness that, at times, I was brought to tears by its sheer beauty. And I’ve been pondering on this goodness these last few days. (What Liz? You? Pondering? I know, shocker, huh?)

What made Corrie, Betsie, and their family so good?
What made them so good to others?

The obvious answer is, of course, their belief in Christ. But, the more I’ve been thinking about it, the more I feel that there’s something more.

After all, I believe in Christ, too. But currently, I’m not able to live so selflessly in my everyday life as they did in theirs (and under such extreme circumstances, no less). And as I was thinking about the “why” of this, I realized that the Ten Booms had absorbed some part of the Savior and his teachings that I haven’t. They saw the world, its people, and our purpose here more accurately than I do.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I know I’m not a horrible person. I’m kind and courteous. I’m respectful and honest. I’m helpful and yada yada yada. But, something is missing. I’m good, but not Good.

What makes their goodness different from mine?

I have the fullness of the gospel, after all. I know where we came from, why we’re here, and where we’re going. But, I’m still so far off the mark! What the Ten Boom's knew, they lived. What I know, I take for granted, or ignore, or forget, or say "tomorrow I will," etc.

This is why I’m so grateful for people like the Ten Booms. They show us how to live the principles and not just believe in them.

And this is what I’m still working on.


Ms. Liz said...

I think that there are subtle and important nodes of faith in the difference between believing in Christ and believing Christ and usually that difference is what dissolves trepidations and lets us let ourselves be Good. It think it's the same difference between loving music and making music that you love. It is meat food for thought... Now you got me going. This might call for a cup of tea.

Liz said...

You know, I thought about the believe in Jesus and believe Jesus difference as well.

Hmm, I guess I still have work to do on that...

Ms. Liz said...

I think there is a personalizing element to it. It becomes a living reality and not just some esoteric ideal that makes me feel warm and fuzzy. That an urgency that follows too and fear of what other people think pretty much disappears. I think I first understood this when I stopped caring about what I wore and drove as a missionary. It should be functional, neat and clean but make and type ceased to matter because that’s the part of the outfit that involved other people but I was only concerned about the Lord's opinion and being a fit emissary. It was pretty liberating. How ridiculous that the Lord had to teach me through clothes?! I have a really, REALLY long way to go.