10 - Father Abraham

This is the 10th entry in a series entitled God the Love Story Autumn

Having been humbled, more like cut to the quick, by the commander and a troll I was determined to devote the rest of my trek to memorizing and contemplating the commands with the intent that I would follow each one to the letter, even if it killed me. Which I was sure it would. Repentance, metanoia, conversion, change of mind and heart, though a slow and grueling process for me nevertheless became true. The realization that the road to immortality required the cross of obedience made sense. My daily willingness to die to my natural self for God’s sake slowly became my quest because He too was willing to die. He was even willing to die to being pure God, willing was He to convert into a poor vulnerable babe not for Himself but so that I may live in peace with Him and my fellow immortals forever. How ironic that I must die so that I may never die.

These thoughts occupied my mind along the pebbled road when to my surprise a large figure of a man wearing a tunic and carrying a long staff stood in the distance on my path. “Who are you?” I asked as I approach the man like a car approaches a red stoplight. Actually to say this man was large is an understatement. Standing next to him made me feel like I was the troll. When I think back on it I can’t say for sure whether he was a giant of a man physically or whether his importance made him seem so much bigger than me. He had long gray hair, a very long gray beard and he wore a tunic. His eyes were hazel green, like marbles, not big but deep and clear. His face was unusually smooth and rosy for a man so old.

“I am Abraham. I am here to teach you how to see.”

“Father Abraham!” I exclaimed. “What are you doing on this road to Christmas? You are already immortal.”

“Where else should I be, child? I live on the road to Christmas as long as this sun and moon force me to. Shall we keep walking while we talk? You are running late you know. In your country the people will soon celebrate the day of giving thanks to God for His providence to the early settlers. That day opens the door to the Christmas season. As well it should. How beautiful is the orchestration of these twin holy days. First you Americans thank God for protecting the bodies of His people, your founders, when they were most vulnerable and in danger, and within weeks, you lay gifts at His feet when He deigns to become one of you, hungry and defenseless. This infant could give nothing but hope. Yet those who knew how to see with their spiritual eyes welcomed and honored him as God’s only begotten Son! Yes, let us be on our way to Christmas together.”

“Father Abraham,” I replied, “I am not so sure I am ready to see.  I am still perplexed by the concepts of grace and mercy. You had no commands to follow, neither the Ten Commandments nor the Law, nor the commands of Jesus. Forgive me father, but when and how did you start to see?”                

“Ah my child, as I asked you to walk faster, now I must tell you to think slower.” He replied, spewing the milk of human kindness with each word. “First let me ask you, what is this death you are so afraid of?” 

11- About Ignorance and Death

Part 11 in the series, God, the Love Story Autumn

The last time you came to visit, surprisingly, Abraham, the Father of a multitude, appeared on my path to Christmas. He had asked me what the death was that I was so afraid of, the fear of which kept me walking on these painful pebbles mile after mile and day after day till I could reach the Christ-child to ask for immortality. 

“Why Father Abraham, everyone knows that death is a deep darkness of nothingness, a kind of sleep without dreams, a state of non-being. I don’t want that to happen to me. I want to sing and eat delectable foods forever. I want to see God! Look at yourself immortal Abraham, standing here millennia after your own bumpy trek through life on earth. I want to be alive like you!” 

Abraham did not reply right away. Instead he lowered his head in deep thought before finally speaking, “You should know my child that the world of nothingness you just described does not exist. You fear a lie.”

I was alarmed and toppled by these words. Abraham went on to explain, “Bodilessness is not deep dark nothingness. Do you remember in the Gospel the scene when Peter cut off the ear of the soldier who had come to arrest Jesus, and instead of gratitude, Jesus became angry with Peter and restored his ear to the man? Be careful to avoid human logic!”

“What does logic have to do with death?”I cried.

Abraham patiently replied, “On that day Peter learned that the logic of God is logic that doesn’t fight against death but overcomes it entirely. The logic that says that a body lies in a state of nothingness after losing the electricity of thought and the mechanics of respiration and digestion is the logic of man, not the logic of God.”

“To live immortally one must cling to the source of life which is our God. So light filled and intelligent is He that God illuminates the world of those closest to Him. People who sit in human darkness are as ignorant and blind as a man in a cave. Death is distance to God nothing more, nothing less.”

“My child you will never gain spiritual sight by looking for it. Seek only to be as near to God’s light and life as you can possibly get. The commands will help only if you understand that they bring you close to the light. Cling to that light and your spirit will see what mortals cannot. Think on these things. I will teach you no more. For you have others to show you the rest of the way to Christmas and they are waiting for you. Be gone.”