In the mountains of western Massachusetts the Lord has built a foundry out of which are cast all manner of instruments for His service. These hammers, these nails - these scalpels and swords were fashioned from metals made molten by the crucible of confrontation, study, independence, and community. This experience and environment is unlike any other and has provided its products a peculiar ethic and a wonderful worldview. Those of us tempered in this foundry are a league of useful soldiers and in the kingdom we are the Lenox Order of Saints.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Permanent Fatal Errors

"Blindness separates us from things but deafness separates us from people." ~ Helen Keller

Our class of fourteen graduated on Saturday and their commencement address was delivered by Sue Thomas, a woman who has been deaf since she was eighteen months old.  She overcame her disability to lead a very successful and productive life - even working for the FBI for a time as a lip reader.  She shared with the class that what embittered her the most about being deaf was that it kept her from the thing she most loved and longed to have: meaningful relationships with people.  She wanted a friend.  What a wonderful thing it was to hear her tell of how she eventually found that friend.  The silence left her only to listen for the One whose voice is inaudible and whose fellowship unbreakable.  The silence she had despised became the sanctuary she adored as she came into a loving relationship with the Lord there.

Miss Thomas's remarks reminded me of an old Michael Knott song I used to listen to back in high school (Knott was in the band The Throes for all you alternative Christian music people out there).  The song's entitled Deaf and Dumb - it tries to explain why it would be desirable to no longer be able to hear or speak.  If the main delivery system for lies, deceptions, half-truths, and seduction is by what we listen to then wouldn't it be best to be deaf and if the vast majority of the utterances of my understandings only add to the sum total of all that is in error then wouldn't it be best that I be dumb?  You get the idea I think.  Obviously this is just the expression of the frustration we all feel with ourselves at times and not a viable plan of action - we'd never choose these disabilities for ourselves - not really.  The gifts of God are wonderful in the joys they provide and terrible in the accounting that must be given for how we've redeemed them.  I believe that BICS provides an opportunity for its students to be deaf and dumb for a year.  BICS can be a great place to be quiet and listen for the Word and its wisdom if one doesn't spit the bit, toss his rider, and gallop away.  Do you miss the silence?  

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