Sunday, July 03, 2016

Martin Luther, Damien Echols, and Me

I don't know a whole lot about Martin Luther, but I do know that I am profoundly grateful for the revolution he started in the Roman Catholic church.  My life, temporary and eternal, has been completely upended in the best way by Luther's insistence that the Bible be made available for anyone to read.  From what I've picked up on Luther's life, he was a guy with major anger issues who was often drunk, and he was given to asceticism (self-punishment) in the cell of the monastery where he lived.  As he studied Roman Catholic literature and practices, he found them to be wholly at odds with the Bible.  Thus began the Protestant Reformation.  That was centuries ago.  Damien Echols hasn't started any kind of revolution, but in his book, he speaks of how he tirelessly punished himself in his jail cell in an effort to find meaning in  life.  His thoughts and motives were very spiritual.  As for me, I have never spent any significant time in any kind of cell, unless you count hiding out for the day in my home office while our new floors were being laid.  I can relate to both of these men, though, in their searches for truth and meaning.  I'm really enjoying this book, and thinking back on my own past, remembering sitting in a yellow-carpeted room after school one day in 5th grade.  It was the day Nostradamus had predicted a major earthquake, so I sat there with a few other kids and waited.  I remember wearing a crystal someone had given me, and passing it through a fire.  I remember my painting a rose black and chanting something or other to put a curse on some schoolboy who had done us wrong.  I remember playing a game with my jr. high friends in the pitch black school bathroom, where one girl would lie on the floor while the others of us put our fingers under her while we chanted, waiting for the spirits to levitate her.  I just remember knowing that there had to be more to life than boys and the latest fashion trends.  Thank God that He rescued me from my constant searching and never finding.  He showed me the truth, and put an end to my ignorance.

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