Wednesday, May 27, 2009
'Faith, wherever it develops into hope, causes not rest but unrest, not patience but impatience. It does not calm the unquiet heart, but is itself the unquiet heart in man. Those who hope in Christ can no longer put up with reality as it is, but begin to suffer under it, to contradict it. Peace with God means conflict with the world, for the goad of the promised future stabs inexorably into the flesh of every unfulfilled present.'
Jurgen Moltmann, Theology of Hope, quoted in Disciples and Citizens, by Graham Cray.
Bishop Cray says, '[t]he goad was the sharp stick used by an ox-driver or ploughman to stop the animal from wandering.' When Jesus told Paul that it hurt him to kick against the goads I think I always pictured gourds, which are much gentler. I have a lot to learn. And I would probably change the script to read, Would it surprise you to find out you were never alone?