Jared Witt l April 18, 2017
My life was a mess. But then I found Jesus, and he got me back on track.
That’s how it’s supposed to work, according to one commonly held narrative. And undoubtedly there are many testimonies from people, often those who have had to confront what I call the sexy sins (drugs, alcohol, to sex, gambling, etc.) at some point in their lives, for whom this particular type of “lost, then found” story has been an authentic Gospel journey. And I would never deny their experience. Alleluia. I give thanks for them.
Problems only occur when this is believed to be the only summary of what a life of faith looks like, and we fail to think critically about what it really means to “find Jesus.” When this happens, we all begin to presume that we’re on the righteous path so long as we’re not struggling with any of what I call the sexy sins—i.e. those of which the laws and customs of our society and moral culture basically disapprove. When Jesus is only expected to swoop in and fix us if we’re up to some sexy sin, then how will we ever be freed from the unsexy sins, the ones of which society basically approves?
Jared Witt l April 6, 2017
I would never want to live in Paris. I love it too much. Right now, Paris is magic to me. I think of Paris the way G.K. Chesterton thought of the Rhinoceros. I can’t believe that it exists in real life. And I smile to myself every time I remember that it does.
But if I lived in Paris, I would lose Paris. It wouldn’t be Paris anymore: cathedrals, and palmiers, and catacombs, and Voltaire with his satchel of manuscripts around every corner. It would just be Paris: graffiti, and social unrest, and urine soaked quaysides.
It’s important to me that Paris continue to hover in the borderland of my memory between fiction and nonfiction without crossing completely to one side or the other. Properly understood, it is neither totally real nor is it pure fantasy. It's Paris.
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