I’m learning to stand the more that I fall down,
It’s the law of inversion, and it’s all turned around,
And I’m staggered by the clash inside my soul,
So purposed for good but inclined for evil
It’s justice and mercy the old dichotomies,
All along the frontlines of my heart in both doubt and belief
The sinner and saint, the old arch enemies,
All at war, in me
I was born depraved, but created for the divine,
With death in my bones, in my heart eternal life,
I’d love for eden, but I’d kill for Rome,
I’m native in a land that is not my home
You are the beginning, and you are the end,
Into your great reversal, I am born again,
A beautiful redemption, you leverage even sin
In me your final victory, I know you’ll win
Into light, from the shadows,
Into life, from the grave,
Into love, Into love
Read Romans 7:14-25
I’d love for Eden, but I’d kill for Rome
To me Eden in some ways represents the memory of the way things are supposed to be. Walking with God, in beautiful nature, with perfect marriages, community living in peace. Comfort. Security. Meaning. Love Intimacy. I would love to live in that type of social environment. I’d like to think I could have Eden like moments in my life, and so do all of us. We look to hope in policy and religion and social reform to bring us closer to Eden. But in the pursuit we repeat the same strange divisive cycle, over and over and over. The element of sin refreshed in each rotation.
If their wherever a Camelot or Utopia in the real world, Rome may have aspired highest, but in this pursuit stooped shockingly low. There are literally hundreds of theories about why Rome fell from social power, even if it fell at all. I believe that any system of policy, any religion, any communal ideal is always marked by the human element of sin. Church splits, fallen leaders, wars, divorces, racism, all caused by this condition in the human heart. We claim “Mine!” over our hunger for the ideal, all the while destroying it with our incandescent blind spot of self. That is the condition of the unfinished heart. Well intentioned, but lacking the perfect righteousness to carry out it’s own will. I believe this is what Paul talked about when he spoke of doing the things that he didn’t want to do. Maybe he too saw the inconsistency relationally around him. I think I’m at that same place. Why am I say hurtful things to people? Why do I gossip? I hate that the diagnoses is easy, and the cure so far off, like a tail chase. It seems only manageable. It’s the cancer that will only be cured in the final way when we are completed in Love. With Christ as the connected head and we the body in full knowledge of our mutual created purposes.
So in essence the line “I’d love for Eden, but I’d kill for Rome” is a confession that I don’t have the tools internally to create a lasting peace socially in my life. In the context of the song, its just one of a long list of confessions about how far I fall short of the Glory of God. Owning my part in relational problems is the only starting place for forgiveness and redemption in my community. So that I look to Jesus who shows me how to love selflessly, who shows me the greatest is the servant. .
Is there someone you are at odds with and you haven’t owned your own falleness in the situation?
Take a moment to ask God to reveal any blind spots you may have relationally, ask him for help.
To hear the song, “All At War”, from Downhere visit this site.
This is part of a devotional series by the guys from Downhere. Each entry is based on one of the songs from their upcoming album, ending is beginning. The album is in stores September 23, 2008, but you can get a free download of the new song “My Last Amen” today.