Saturday, March 15, 2014

Giving Up

Worthiness is a tricky thing for me.  Somehow, somewhere in my existence, I got the notion to be worthy meant to be perfect.  Perfect is a hard thing. A really hard thing, so hard that Heavenly Father knew only one could do it, our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ.

So what is a girl like me with a perfection complex to do?  Give up.  Yep that's right just give up.  Now before any of you get your panties in a twist over such a thing, let me explain further.
Carl Bloch's Healing at the Pool of Bethesda
You see this picture above by Carl Bloch?  I love Carl Bloch by the way, his paintings speak to me in such a personal way.  Anyway, back on topic.  Here we have Christ offering up healing for this crippled man enshrouded by darkness.  You would think that the two key figures of the story (Christ and the old crippled man) of the Healing at the Pool of Bethesda would be the center of focus, but if you look at the way different figures are illuminated, the man in the red cap and the Savior are really who this painting is about.  Yes, I've spent a lot of time looking at this painting.  I am like this man.  He is obviously in need.  His needs may not be as great as some in this scene, but greater than some others.  His eyes and attention are completely focused on the miracle that is going on right next to him, but his body does not turn to it.  You can see in his eyes his longing for healing, but he doesn't ask for it, maybe like me, he feels unworthy of it.  He clearly longs for it, he so wants to be found, but why does he not cry out for the miracle too?  Does he too feel like he is not perfect and therefore does not deserve to ask for help from the one being he longs to be close to and so is left to heal himself?

Years I have believed that healing belonged to those who "deserved" it.  Those who are faithful and to me faithful equates to perfect.  It's not that I didn't intellectually believe that I deserved to take part in the great and eternal Atonement, it's that I believed that is was for those that did those "really big" sins and for those that were "faithful".  Where did I fit?  There I was waiting at the side of the Pool of Bethesda waiting for the water to stir so I could lower myself into the waters.  Then I learned this important lesson while serving in the temple this week.  Faith actually equates to repentant not perfect.

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