Thursday, January 12, 2017

This point of intersection is the point of intersection of the branches of the Cross. –Simone Weil

For the LORD God is both sun and shield; He will give grace and glory. Psalm 84:10

To You, O LORD, I lift up my soul; my God, I put my trust in You; let me not be humiliated. Psalm 25:1

verb (used with object), humiliated, humiliating. cause (a person) a painful loss of pride, self-respect, or dignity; mortify.

So I met with the other English Language Arts teachers yesterday during seventh period, and asked how I could best support them, because actually my writing class is an extra supplement to the regular curriculum. I listed the ream of ELA standards (new ones were approved by the Arizona Legislature just last month since they know so much about instruction and the classroom; basically they just erased “Common Core” off the top of each sheet of paper) and they leapt onto “Parts of Speech.”

And anyone who knows Mrs. Voelkel knows that she does parts of speech, and actually she loves parts of speech, particularly the diagramming bit because it is so neat and tidy and thus, satisfying.

Really the main reason for teaching, or reminding, eighth graders of the parts of speech is so they will be able to correctly use nominative and objective (and possessive) pronouns, because not so many people can do that.

And the Psalmist begs God to protect him from being humiliated.

Which is different from humble yourself (and He will lift you up), even though both of them are transitive verbs with the same direct object, me, because humble yourself is a reflexive verb.

And as much as they tried, the crowds, the religious leaders and the Roman soldiers were unable to humiliate Jesus. They were unable to shake or take His dignity, because He had already laid it aside.

Simone Weil paints a picture of the nail of affliction as being “a marvel of divine technique.”

It is a simple and ingenious device which introduces into the soul of a finite creature the immensity of force, blind, brutal, and cold. The infinite distance which separates God from the creature is entirely concentrated into one point to pierce the soul in its centre…In this marvelous dimension the soul, without leaving the place and the instant where the body to which it is united is situated, can cross the totality of space and time and come into the very presence of God.

If I lift up my soul to Him, and He nestles it within His bosom, as a mother bird shields her young, no one can mortify me all day long.

Because I am His, His beloved, and He is mine.