Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Someone who "gets it".
Every so often I encounter someone who, for the lack of a better term, "gets it" about our walk with Christ. He or she presents a concept that produces a "eureka" moment for me. It is always a concept that I am either first encountering, forgotten or (wrongly) not practicing. The means in which I discovered these religious nuggets are varied and rarely predictable. In this particular case I had my inspiration in the book written by Henry Rider Haggard called, Alan's Wife(1889).
First, about Haggard (From Wikipedia): Sir Henry Rider Haggard KBE (June 22, 1856 – May 14, 1925), born in Norfolk, England, was a Victorian writer of adventure novels set in exotic locations.
Secondly there is some controversy about Haggard and for that I point to the last page of his Alan Quartermain book: Maiwa's Revenge: or, The War of the Little Hand as proof that the controversy is essentially wrong.
Rather then continue to explain what I found I will simply present the passage from the book Alan's Wife (1889)that made me say that Haggard's got it. The Holy Spirit was with him. Excert from Project Gutenberg: It is in the Character's Alan Quartermain's voice.
Well, we reached the kraals safely enough, seeing nothing more of
Hendrika, and, were this a story, doubtless I should end it here
with--"and lived happily ever after." But alas! it is not so. How am I
to write it?
My dearest wife's vital energy seemed completely to fail her now that
the danger was past, and within twelve hours of our return I saw that
her state was such as to necessitate the abandonment of any idea of
leaving Babyan Kraals at present. The bodily exertion, the anguish of
mind, and the terror which she had endured during that dreadful night,
combined with her delicate state of health, had completely broken her
down. To make matters worse, also, she was taken with an attack of
fever, contracted no doubt in the unhealthy atmosphere of that accursed
valley. In time she shook the fever off, but it left her dreadfully
weak, and quite unfit to face the trial before her.
I think she knew that she was going to die; she always spoke of my
future, never of _our_ future. It is impossible for me to tell how sweet
she was; how gentle, how patient and resigned. Nor, indeed, do I wish
to tell it, it is too sad. But this I will say, I believe that if ever
a woman drew near to perfection while yet living on the earth, Stella
Quatermain did so.
The fatal hour drew on. My boy Harry was born, and his mother lived
to kiss and bless him. Then she sank. We did what we could, but we had
little skill, and might not hold her back from death. All through one
weary night I watched her with a breaking heart.
The dawn came, the sun rose in the east. His rays falling on the peak
behind were reflected in glory upon the bosom of the western sky. Stella
awoke from her swoon and saw the light. She whispered to me to open the
door of the hut. I did so, and she fixed her dying eyes on the splendour
of the morning sky. She looked on me and smiled as an angel might
smile. Then with a last effort she lifted her hand, and, pointing to the
radiant heavens, whispered:
"_There, Allan, there!_"
It was done, and I was broken-hearted, and broken-hearted I must wander
to the end. Those who have endured my loss will know my sorrow; it
cannot be written. In such peace and at such an hour may I also die!
Yes, it is a sad story, but wander where we will about the world we can
never go beyond the sound of the passing bell. For me, as for my father
before me, and for the millions who have been and who shall be, there is
but one word of comfort. "The Lord hath given, and the Lord hath taken
away." Let us, then, bow our heads in hope, and add with a humble heart,
"Blessed be the name of the Lord."