-Wir sein pettler. Hoc est verum.--"We are beggars. This is true."--Martin Luther-

[ Home ] [ Originals ] [ Words of Ones Wiser ] [ Odds and Ends ]

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Lutheran Quote of the Day: "Jesus’ high-priestly prayer does not stop even when we quit praying."

"No, we cannot base our life on faith. Even the disciples do not live from their faith in that moment when they are battling anxiety and seasickness. They hardly remember that they are believers. There’s simply no time to think about it. That may be put very crudely, but that’s how it is nevertheless! At that moment the disciples do not live from the fact that God is in their thoughts (because he is not!), but they live because Jesus Christ is thinking of them, and the stillness that surrounds his conversation with the Father is filled with these thoughts about his own. Our faith’s grip on the Father may loosen. But he in whom we believe holds us fast in his grasp. Jesus’ high-priestly prayer does not stop even when we quit praying. Thus, there is really no such thing as “Psychology of Religion” because the decisive events between God and me do not happen in my psyche, my consciousness, at all; they occur in the heart of my Lord. Here (and only here) there is constancy and faithfulness; here there is a love that will not let me go, even though my fever chart fluctuates between faith and little faith, between trust and doubt, and no reliance can be placed on my defiant and despondent heart. I don’t need to tell you what a comfort it can be to know that, and how that knowledge can help me survive those times when my own faith is cold and empty and dead and a sealed heaven arches above me."

-Helmut Thielicke, How To Believe Again (trans. H. G. Anderson; Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1974), 69-70.

No comments: