A lot of our neurosis and baggage in relationship problems that we find in life as we get older have a common starting point. In my encounters with spiritual directees and counselees, I have noticed that if one had been properly loved and tenderly cared for during one’s formative years, there is a certain solid foundation from which one can blossom into without constantly trying later on to either reclaim what should have been given, or getting substitutes or replacements for what was missing.
I have not read the series of Harry Potter books, and must confess that I have not ventured into trying to appreciate the world of the Hogwarts. But I was very delighted to discover something that author J. K. Rowling had woven into Harry’s life. Apparently, Lily Potter, the mother of Harry, did something to Harry in his early childhood that prevented the evil Lord Voldemort from touching him. It was when this villain tried to lay his hands on Harry, that he experienced agonizing pain, thwarting his plans of harming Harry. It was later that when Harry asked Dumbledore for an explanation that something deep was revealed. Apparently, Harry’s mother died trying to save him, showing that love that was as powerful as a mother’s love has an unexplained power that protected and surrounded him from evil. In Harry, this was physically evidenced by the scar on his forehead. But it was not just the physical scar that had power, but the love behind the scar which caused it. Rowling, in my opinion, demonstrated an intuition of what in essence is true power, which is the power of sacrificial and selfless love.
For us Christians who declare that Jesus is our Lord and Saviour, this intuition is not a mere story or fable, and not something that is taught implicitly by any means. It forms the very backbone of our belief and the hope of our ever entering into eternal life. But many of us don’t get to this truth in our Christian living on a serious level, and I believe that it is our task as priests and spiritual leaders to reveal this over and over to the flock that is given to us by God to tend and to feed. I am truly confident of this – that when we understand and appreciate this truth of our salvation in Christ, and the lengths to which our loving God went to demonstrate and make this real, our sense of reality will shift on a seismic as well as a cosmic level.Read More »