Dark Brightness

Bleak Theology: Hopeful Science

Nothing special trumps toxic virtue.

One of the women in the ladysphere is giving up blogging because what she does in her life is far more important. She’s also in a period of grieving, as happens to us all. If we live long enough. Her grandmother and father have left us over the last couple of years.

And she has things to do in real life. Nothing special. But faithfulness, Elspeth, is now special. Read the whole thing, but she is describing her grandmother.

The pastor -her pastor- who eulogized her, a man who’d known her his whole life and spent extensive time around her family as a young man titled his eulogy, “A Priceless Woman”. Proverbs 31 was the text he read from and he rightly noted, that “they don’t make women like this one anymore.” I couldn’t argue with him, even when I considered my own life as a wife and mother which sadly, in this day and age, would be considered by many as the epitome of faithfulness. But my grandmother in law? She was a part of a mold that has been broken. Most of us are trying, and haphazardly at that, to put together the pieces of it to build a rough replica. Others of us are presenting a caricature not based on anything of substance. But Grandma was the real deal, and everyone who knew her knew it.

Two years ago, my father went home to be with the Lord. I will refrain from documenting the legacy he left behind, but it is, to put it mildly, outstanding. Every memorial that weekend, from the wake, to the final services, to the unveiling of the memorial his town put up in the town square were standing room only, with people lined up outside for just the passing opportunity to pay homage to the memory of this great man. He was my daddy, so of course the impact he had on my life was immeasurable and more intimate than those who gave testimony of their experiences with him. Still, the reach of his influence was a blessing to behold, providing our family much comfort.

I think Elspeth underestimates her influence. That is not a bad thing: neither is raising a family, living a quiet life, and being left alone.

I would like to be left alone.

But the facts on the ground are that this world denies Christ, and we are to be his witness. This blog is mainly about the texts of the day, and examples from the past of the heights from which we have fallen.

Me included.

Luke 24:36b-48

Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 37They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. 38He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? 39Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” 40And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. 41While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” 42They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43and he took it and ate in their presence.

44Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you — that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” 45Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, 46and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, 47and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48You are witnesses of these things.”

1 John 2:7-17

7Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word that you have heard. 8Yet I am writing you a new commandment that is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining. 9Whoever says, “I am in the light,” while hating a brother or sister, is still in the darkness. 10Whoever loves a brother or sister lives in the light, and in such a person there is no cause for stumbling. 11But whoever hates another believer is in the darkness, walks in the darkness, and does not know the way to go, because the darkness has brought on blindness. 12I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven on account of his name. 13I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young people, because you have conquered the evil one. 14I write to you, children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young people, because you are strong and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.

15Do not love the world or the things in the world. The love of the Father is not in those who love the world; 16for all that is in the world – the desire of the flesh, the desire of the eyes, the pride in riches – comes not from the Father but from the world. 17And the world and its desire are passing away, but those who do the will of God live forever.

We are to love each other. We are to allow each other rest: we are to live by the rules of Christ. Though they offend those who edit newspapers in New York. (Such people have the stench of the buggy whip manufacturers upon them).

You should read the whole piece. It’s a hoot, and it only goes to show again how cut off the coastal elite of America are from ordinary Americans.

One of the more serious aspects that the article reveals is the sense of dread and rage that an openly Christian company should even be in existence. Every time atheist New Yorker see that Chick Fil A is closed on Sunday a Christian statement is registered. Good for Chick -Fil-A. Think what it would be like if more Christian business owners and employees did the same.

“I’m sorry boss. I can’t work on Sundays…”

I’m glad Chick-Fil-A has invaded New York City, and I’m glad about their Christian witness and I’m glad millions of New Yorkers are happy to eat their decent food in a decent environment.

I gotta go. It’s supper time and I need a chicken sandwich with waffle fries…

I like the advertisements that Chick Fil A have. They make me smile. I like far more that they act their faith, by not being open on Sunday.

I like that Elspeth is working where she can. Not being “special”. Because she knows that being “special” has a virtue signal value, and that virtue signals — or talking about thoughts as if they are actions — is an error.

For none of us know our value. It is seen by the people around us.

So let us, this Sunday, not get tired of meeting together, but encourage each other to do good, and not get fatigue in following our Lord and Saviour.



2 thoughts on "Nothing special trumps toxic virtue."

  • elspeth says:

    My friend! Thank you for the wonderful linkage and quotes, Chris.

    There was a lot of *stuff* that contributed to my decision to finally switch gears. But it is true that grieving for people who lived excellent lives, in real life, on the ground, is a huge motivation.

    I know that we will not be left alone by those who don’t believe. This world hates Christ, but it loves women with loud voices, including those who sound traditional, and the men who aid them.

    I also know that so long as faithful women of good will attempt to do our work on the front lines, we handicap our men’s ability to rise up, dig deep within, and exhibit the strength of resolve which can causes revival to sweep through the church. Unless we get out of the way, we become de facto leaders, feeding the spirit of the age (even if not on purpose).

    The rest can do what they feel is best, and I pray their best as they do it. Let God’s name be glorified and praised by whomever will praise Him. As for me, I need to do the work that honors the legacy I have been blessed to inherit, the things that earn my husband praise at the gate.

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