Ropes, Insanity and the Divine

“I’ve had it.” “I’m done.” “I don’t know where to turn.”

Or, to put it in Twelve-Step lingo: “I’m powerless! I need a Power greater than myself to return me to sanity!”

Eugene Peterson’s paraphrase of the first beatitude in Matthew 5:3 says: “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.

The line between sanity and the lack of it can be thin indeed; and in our culture we are under constant pressure to appear to be sane. We will do crazy things to protect the appearance of sanity in the people we love, as demonstrated by Kramer in his concern for Lloyd Braun, his mentally fragile friend.

The irony is in the fact that the road to “sanity” begins with the admission of our own inability to attain it. Whereas the craziness of it all can be apparent to the addict, “normal people” have a much harder time admitting what St. Paul says is universally true – that all have sinned and fall short of God’s glory. (Romans 3:10, 23.) Paul goes on to say that it is the relationship with Christ – our “Higher Power” – that sets us on the path toward a meaningful life.

Kramer could not guarantee Braun’s sanity; the comedy is anything but subtle with the wackiest character on the show presuming to protect someone else’s mental stability. We have a much easier time recognizing someone else’s “crazy”. It takes real courage and a lot of humility to recognize and admit to our own. But that’s the first step. Take it!

A blessed Tuesday.

Mark Demers

Want to talk about sex, politics, spirituality? So do I. I grew up in a religious home in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Our country was reeling from assassinations and the devastation of the Viet Nam War. Looking for something beautiful, I got a degree in music, married the love of my life and had children. Looking for God, I then went to seminary. Looking for something that might transform the world, I became a local church pastor. Now, I’m always looking for people who want to talk about important things. I cherish conversations with emerging leaders, people who are antsy to try an idea they believe would change the world for the better. I’d would love to hear from you.