come back to Elfland - "we have sinned and grown old"

in a chapter on the "Ethics of Elfland," Chesterton talks about the monotony of the universe.  some say the monotony [the sun rising and setting, tide ebbing and flowing, cycle of water and life, etc] of the universe is proof that their isn't a creator.  the monotony shows us that all things are set and ordered and cannot be changed because their are Laws of nature in charge, not a creator.  he says, "The modern mind rests upon an assumption; an assumption that things that repeat themselves are dead."  there is no life, all things are determined and set in place.  there is no purpose.  there is no use in trying to fight against the system or choose a different path, for the whole world is set in motion and cannot be changed.  action is wound like a clock and let go to do what it must...

Chesterton argues against this sort of nihilistic view.  he says,

The thing I mean can be seen, for instance, in children, when they find some game or joke that they specially enjoy. A child kicks his legs rhythmically through excess, not absence, of life. Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening,“Do it again” to the moon. It may be that he has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, our Father is younger than we.
wow.  i picture God, the Creator of all that is seen and unseen, almost giddy over the sun rising everyday; excited over each breath a human being, made in his image, takes; glowing when the snow falls and the flowers bloom.  he is, after all, the Creator, maker, and generator of all these things.  without God's divinely spoken word; without God's say, these things would not happen.  they don't happen because of Laws.  they happen because of God's will.

"we have sinned and grown old."  
Father, forgive us.  make us young again.  give us child-like faith.

1 comment:

Katherine E. said...

This is so great. I'm putting a link to it on my blog! Hope that's OK