Horror of Compassion

“Our culture can get locked into sacrificial models of transformation that believes if we kill this ‘monster’–whoever or whatever that monster is–then everything will return to the way that it should be; our lust for nostalgia knows no limits whereby we truly believe we can return to something better than today.

The horror of compassion demands that we stand and take notice of what is really happening. It is not about slaying the monster, but confronting our own violence, fear and anxiety, confronting the reality of our sin, and becoming aware of the compassion of God. It is a frightening prospect! That God would move with such self-giving, self-emptying love towards us and the whole of creation is remarkable and horrifying! How could God possibly be that gracious, that loving, that compassionate? Where is justice?! That we, as children of wrath, who are bound up in our violent, wrathful ways, can be overcome and redeemed by this One of Unconditionality, is a tidal wave of glory often too much for us to handle. The evil and deadly dance of violence and death has been overcome through the horror of compassion, the compassion of the Triune Dance, exposing every Babadookian terror, releasing us from every Babadookian grip, defeating it through the Cross, and leading us out in the dance of resurrection.”

You’ll Float Too: A Theology of Horror (Wipf and Stock, due out 2018), from the chapter “Horror of Compassion”.

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