Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Oh, Teresa!

The Ecstasy of St Teresa
Gian Lorenzo Bernini

In the last couple of days I have read comments by people referring to God in a negative way. Both were with obvious humour. One in particular was referring to the God of the OT, The other was just a general reference. Both made me laugh; they were too jocular to find offensive.
God is light,
and in him is no darkness at all.
1 John 1:5 RV
My feelings and thoughts of God are not negative.
I question what sometimes feels as his absence. The moments when God feels distant are when I experience negative things.
Sometimes I have created the negativity.
The moments I recognise an absence is when my arrogance and selfishness becomes too big for me to feel a presence.
Standing in a river torrent, Teresa of Avila complained:
Lord, amid so many ills this comes on top of all the rest.”
A Voice answered her, “Teresa, that is how I treat my friends.”
She retorted, “Ah, my God! That is why you have so few of them!”

I wouldn't dare say such a thing, but I haven't had the experiences of Teresa that would allow me to do so. Teresa's mystical writings have been, and are still,a revelation. Interior Castle is a fantastic example of a true mystic explaining the mystical experience; lucid and majestic, vague and humble. Christians are very blessed to have had someone with such a beautiful soul explain a deeply personal experience in such a meaningful and glorious way.

Oh, Teresa! What a wonderful soul, spirit, woman, and wit.

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