What started as bit of farce quickly spread into something more. When it comes to writing, content and context must always be held in delicate tension. The Narrator had hoped that these posts would begin conversations about the nature of the Gospel, the problems of Greek Life, and serious reflection on the flippancy with which people use the Name of God. This, alas, was not the overwhelming case. Instead, those who already had bitterness toward Holy Church used it as an invitation to perpetuate their hatred for the Bride and those who saw themselves in its reflection were not inspired to change and self-awareness but were instead driven farther into abstraction.
Apologies, accordingly, to those who, for legitimate reasons, were so offended.
It is thus that, what had hoped to be a laugh with a poke, must come to a close. In the service of God and not ourselves, even good intentions must be weighed against a Righteousness too great to bear. To this avail we all stumble, but when it is within our power to honor and obey our Lord and Master, in all times and in all places, we are called to submit.
However, before this brief encounter is wrought closed, The Narrator of Esther would like to pose these final thoughts, at the close shall come an insight into how the story would have ended, next semester:
Esther really wasn’t that bad. In fact, her faith is to be commended. For all her failing, for all her misunderstanding, she was, in the least, trying. She was, in the least, seeking. Does that cover everything? It does not. Dogma, true dogma, should be at the center of all people who seek and chase our beautiful Lord; however, all is but grace. All are on journey. All. Give space to chase the Infinite and you’ll realize just how far each and every one of us has to go. Through the ministration of Holy Ghost, somehow it all comes out to His good.
The above being true, it is also true that Greek Life on the campus of a professed Baptist university is a serious problem. In particular, fraternities and sororities that claim the name of Christ as masthead. Should a group claim Christ, as certain fraternities and sororities do, they should claim the whole of Christ.
Do we forget? Love your neighbor as yourself.
Though the Narrator admits culpability in frequently failing this command, nonetheless, as stated above, when it is within obvious power to correct, we as servants of Christ are called to do so. Organizations that are based on ostracizing, on the mindset of the cluster against the non-cluster, have forgotten the sting of not belonging.
You’re the child whose just dropped their ice cream cone in the sandbox and everyone is laughing at you. For a moment, would you be that child again? Consider what it means. Consider how it feels. Laugh this away, if you will, but there is hope you feel your heart bruised, that this causes a wound as old as this aching cosmos. Laugh at this too? It’s but Scripture.
Where would our Lord Christ be? Amongst the hungry and poor, the outcast, or with those assured of feeling that they belong?
This is not to suggest, however, The Narrator is without fault. The Narrator, instead, recognizes this failing and admits, in part, that this is the reason for truncating this fable.
But for those of you in the clusters, in the safety of group identity, is it fair to ask:
Shall you be the one to answer, yes, you on your own, for those who did not get to join the whole?
Shall you be the one to answer, yes, you on your own, for those who were never made to feel that they could try?
“Comfort ye my people.”
Where is your comfort?
Should this blog have appealed to you for it satirized a group that you do not like, should this have been a delight to your soul because it made you feel superior in your faith—are you not tired?
Have you not wasted enough of life hating the Church, all that energy that amounts to hating yourself? Are you broken, bruised, and wounded? The Narrator has a place for you here, come sit! We can chat about it, laugh at our foolishness, at our false superiority.
Come rest, at last, rest in the arms of Christ. Stop hating and being spiteful to the means by which Holy Ghost chooses to manifest. All is but grace and while dogma must be central, there is no negating this, we all need friends for the journey.
Come rest; come rest. Are you not tired? Do you need friends for the journey? Come play here with us, repentant misfits ourselves.
This ending was planned several weeks ago, long before the bit of trouble …
Had the story gone on, next semester, Esther and Jacob (Phillip) would have broken up after a man on the street told them that he had a word of knowledge that they shouldn’t be getting married. Devastated, Esther sets off on her own to establish Bethesda Ministries–a clinic specializing in providing children who are deaf and living in Kenya with resources to live productive, active lives (yes, prayers for healing are included, but along with immediate care as well). On the plane, Esther contemplate the alleged promise she felt from God so long ago, about Bethesda and the names Andrew, Phillip, and Peter. She lets it go, telling God that she is willing to follow, even if it seems uncertain.
At that moment, an attractive man about her age is passing through the plane and takes the seat beside her. They start to chat. He explains that he’s going to Kenya as well to work with a mission church. Esther’s heart quickens, but falls quickly when he, taking out his in-flight reading, happens to pull out a Book of Common Prayer. Everything in her revolts, except a small part which, curiously, desires to know more. She watches him open the book, looks to the prayers within it, and when she sees how many Psalms are there, she begins to wonder if she’s missed something, if this, too, isn’t part of God. The man seems so nice, so open, so faithful, yet he is totally other than what she has been led to believe faith should look like. Yet, she considers, Christ is the same. She shoos the thought away, deciding that she doesn’t want to mistakingly read God into situations anymore.
Suddenly, the man apologizes for his rudeness in not properly introducing himself sooner, sticks out his hand, and says, “I’m Andrew.”
For you see, though it is not advisable for Esther to have thrust her finger down in Scripture and read the first verse that popped out for guidance, St. Augustine was converted by “turn and read.” God can use whatever He wills. Holy Ghost violently breaks in, sudden and beautiful, and does all sorts of beauty with our mangled messes. Esther included.
Now to Him be all glory, all honor, all power, now until the end of the age and the words passed here be found in the grace of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour, to whom be all glory and honor, now and forever, world without end, amen.
— Esther’s Narrator