Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A God Dumbfounded by Humanity's Hope

Charles Péguy (1873 - 1914)

The French poet and essayist Charles Péguy, of whom I'd like to write about further when time permits, wrote something I found interesting, daring to speak as the voice of God in Le Porche du Mystère de la Deuxième Vertu (The Portal of the Mystery of Hope) in 1912.

The faith that I love best, says God, is hope.

Faith doesn’t surprise me.
It’s not surprising.
I am so resplendent in my creation. . . .
That in order really not to see me these poor people would have to be blind.

Charity, says God, that doesn’t surprise me.
It’s not surprising.
These poor creatures are so miserable that unless they had a heart of stone, how could they not have love for one another?
How could they not love their brothers?
How could they not take the bread from their own mouth, their daily bread, in order to give it to the unhappy children who pass by?
And my son had such love for them. . . .

But hope, says God, that is something that surprises me.

Even me.

That is surprising.

That these poor children see how things are going and believe that tomorrow things will go better.

That they see how things are going today and believe that they will go better tomorrow morning.

That is surprising and it’s by far the greatest marvel of our grace.

And I’m surprised by it myself.

And my grace must indeed be an incredible force.

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