Which is easier? – to say to the paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven’? Or to say ‘Get up, and take up your mat, and walk’?
paralyzed and profligate have lost playfulness
in the midst of limit and obsession
it is not enough just to breathe
from the past we receive permission
to simply let be what was
prelude to a next good day
toward tomorrow we are pulled
beyond fondest hope or dramatic dream
actual Arthur Murray dance steps laid down
there is no easy way forward when stuck
priests pray and prophets provoke
both take authority to remap circuits
Ancient Rabbis, and modern, use an argumentation called, “light and heavy”. The choice put forward is that of evidence. It is easier or lighter to say, “your sins are forgiven” because how can someone prove such a statement. The harder position is that of saying, “Rise, take your bedroll, and show us you can walk”, because this will either happen or it won’t.
Institutional church life often puts more emphasis upon what can’t be shown than providing a witness that leads to wonder. Our words, words, words, pile up in front of fewer and fewer people. It is like we are shouting into empty space for water in a desert to appear. All our words, incantations, and rituals are “light” as we are still thirsty.
“Heavy” is shown through practical mission work that actually feeds the hungry, brings a well to the thirsty, clothes naked refugees, sets up support circles for prisoners, etc. These are measurable benefits that go beyond theological postulates.
In every age it is important to find the connecting spots between light and heavy arguments. Without them being in relationship to one another the light will separate and go its own way, content in its heritage. Without touching each other the heavy will eventually become light as it loses track of the sparks thrown off by this intersection of light and heavy that assists both to grow.
If greater things such as referred to in John 14:12 are going to manifest themselves, the best opportunity will be in the middle of this dynamic of evidence-based formation and re-formation of theosis.