Posted by: Dan | February 2, 2006

Intimacy in Forsakenness

There are legitimate experiences of absence within this ever-present world of God's grace, but they are forms and modes of love. Such were the experiences of the prophets of the Old Covenant, of the Son of God on the cross and in the darkness of his descent into hell; such are the experiences of all those who, in their several vocations, follow the Son. These are the redemptive paths of love as it traces the foot-steps of sinners in order to catch up with them and bring them home.
~ Hans Urs von Balthasar

Balthasar neatly sums up what I have been trying to say for the last few years now. Yes, godforsakenness is very real — even as an experience of the people of God. But, thanks to the victory won by Christ on the cross, and to the presence of the eschatological Spirit, Christians transform forsakenness into intimacy. We have been saved from hell so that we can now descend freely into the depths of hell to bring God to those who have rejected him. There is such a thing as intimacy in forsakenness — and we are to be the living proof of that.

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