"Standing before that tree, laden with fruit withheld, we listen to Evil's murmur, 'In the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened...' But in the beginning, our eyes were already open. Our sight was perfect. Our vision let us see a world spilling with goodness. Our eyes fell on nothing but the glory of God. We saw God as He truly is: good. But we were lured by the deception that there was more to a full life, there was more to see. And, true, there was more to see: the ugliness we hadn't beheld, the sinfulness we hadn't witnessed, the loss we hadn't known.
"We eat. And, in an instant, we are blind. No longer do we see God as one we can trust. No longer do we perceive Him as wholly good. No longer do we observe all of the remaining paradise.
"We eat. And, in an instant, we see. Everywhere we look, we see a world of lack, a universe of loss, a cosmos of scarcity and injustice.
"We are hungry. We eat. We are filled... and emptied.
"And still, we look at the fruit and see only the material means to fill our emptiness. We don't see the material world for what it is meant to be: as the means to communion with God.
"We look and swell with the ache of a broken, battered planet, what we ascribe as the negligent work of an indifferent Creator (if we even think there is one). Do we ever think of this busted-up place as the result of us ingrates, unsatisfied, we who punctured it all with a bite? The fruit's poison has infected the whole of humanity. Me. I say no to what He's given. I thirst for some roborant, some elixir, to relieve the anguish of what I've believed: God isn't good. God doesn't love me."
~From One Thousand Gifts, by Ann Voscamp
My sisters recently mentioned this book to me, which I am only one chapter into.
But, as you can see in this excerpt, the first chapter is real.
As far as I can tell, the point of the book is
'to let the losses that puncture our world... become places to see. To see through to God.'
And I appreciate that.
I'm sure you'll be hearing a little more of this book as I work my way through it.
It isn't sugary Christianity, I'm thinking.