Pride and Redemption

Written by: 
Nelson Ruto Rotino

At the start was the formation of a being, fearfully and wonderfully created. Imbued with the creator's essence, designed in the creator's very own image. Blessed in significance. Of profound purpose. Elevated above all creation.

But then sin creeped in. Draped in vanity, certainly man fell. Down a well — calamity. But why!? Wait! "Draped in vanity..." pause! Might that just be the cause? Rather than have his essence glorify the Lord, he preferred that in essence, he would be glorified as lord. Conceit lay him bare before deceit. So, sin, like a broken record, went on repeat.

Man, the creation, wished to be like the Creator and stand at His level. He was then lied to. By who? The devil. A being filled with an infinity of hate and a truckload of bait, whose mission was to steal, kill and destroy all of creation. His purpose, to devour. Executed through crafty ploys, he deployed to strip us of power and separate us from our Creator.

Unable to use a power that was rightfully ours and though we know he lies in wait, we understate the issue, underrate his pursuit. And our fate is subdued. Vanity hence calamity. Profanity, that's where it starts. Adultery, a breaking of hearts. Through immorality, I cut into myself internally-placed scars. Spiritually defaced, scars that could quite physically lead to mortality. Disgraced. Think! But to drugs we give in, hoping to subdue this mortal reality and in so doing, give up immortality. Think!

We begin to worship stars (sorcery). Replace the Lord with the desire for large sums of money, the ideal job, spouse (idolatry!) And in so doing we truly are worshiping ourselves - our emotions, desires and comforts. Vanity! As certainly as the devil pursues us, we pursue lust in a society that celebrates it. Understates it. We are degenerating, yet convinced that it is all okay. Lied to in every way! And so, we stay in a bowl of confusion. A spiral of thought and rumble of sentiment so detrimental it affects our mentality. The spin of whirling sin from deep within turns brothers' keepers into brothers’ peepers with misguided identities manifesting reality most foul. An awful projection in which we seek some sort of protection for our hearts from the hurt of a feeling of not belonging. We are told that doing or accepting all these things makes us 'cool'! Vanity! Or maybe we hope that the void ebbs when we do these things to fit in lest we are avoided, looked down upon, scorned or insulted. And our conscience ceases to be consulted.... as we grow numb to its caution and hum a distortion so loud, we are convinced that we can lose ourselves in the sound.

And where caution was is now emptiness or rather, an empty mess that we leap over to empty self but when we are spent, we realise unfulfillment. Purposeless strife; the paradox of life. But I want all these things! Diamond rings. Bling! Yes, it's fancy. I can't see whatever could be wrong with it. And my mates say 'go get it!'. Allow me to unwind the scam of the glitz and glam. A truth many men refuse to find. We have been made blind but were it written, even in brail books we would feign hooks because we hail looks. We make the constant error of wanting to be seen as more than what we were. Vanity! To glorify self and be glorified in preference to the creator. Vanity! We think that in our acquisition of knowledge, material wealth, fame, 'adoration' we shall-have fortified ourselves against the vagaries of life. And I that, having neither weakness nor need for the creator. Oh, deceptive vanity!

So, vanity hung on a tree — seductively. Or might that just be the mistake? Might vanity not have been in the fruit but in the steaks. And as a punctuation to breath, came death. From this point did sin source. Pain, grief, failure, futility and loss. And we do not bear fruit for we have become bare fruit. We are offered seed but refuse to concede, for we think we have it all figured out! Knowing all that is necessary for one to succeed — to be seasoned in the art of life we claim, yet still fail to sprout. Vanity!

Trapped behind bars, enslaved by an addiction. An affliction I feel my skin crawl, pain! No compilation of words can explain how insane I feel...I carry wounds that never heal... oscillate from ecstasy to nothingness wrapped in lunacy, the perfect mess. I'm ugly. No one could ever love me. Not a soul cares. Hide your face from their piercing stares. I could never be enough. I see them laugh. I'm filled with anxiety but maybe drugs might just drain it out....even just for a moment. Torment gone, just for a moment. Against my opponent I have won, OR HAVE I? Just for a moment. But, as certainly as the sun rises, my soul capsizes in a flood of sin. I'm sinking.... The entire time thinking that I have it under control. Knowing not (or maybe I do) to anticipate the fall. I'm torn between realities, states, fates, hate... help me! Imploding, collapsing, fighting it off and relapsing. Cursing every moment.

Though there is hope, they say. A man named Jesus, they say. They say if only my vanity were pulled out, I could create space for another V! Vulnerability. (They say!) But I built my vanity up to protect me. To show the world a picture with no weakness. Though he desires meekness, they say. With broken hearts and a life full of futility, we become broken art that only the creator can make full, and thus fulfil each need. To make full indeed. They say!

But for what reason? He knows not my mortal prison. Or of the poison that hangs in this vial before me, so seductively. To liberate me from this vile reality. I can put an end to this hurtful, fruitless flesh. There's nothing at stake.

He stands at the door and knocks. Because He is the Word, He knows to use His words. He won't barge in like a Drill Sergeant. But, were we to open and let Him in, we would be saved from the pangs of sin.

The devil separates you from Christ in your thoughts first, so you may thirst for the truth which he quenches with his own concoction that eats at your being slowly to destroy all that is holy. He fills you with fantasy and unrelenting pursuit with his half-truths. Through repeated realisation of your confined and purposeless station, you are broken. Our hearts were not designed to be broken, as always results from sin. So, brethren open and for the victory, let Him in!

Wait! Don't let the enemy take you away. Pray! Jesus bore the pain, jeers, sneers and insults that petrify you— for you! And it was finished. You fear to be lesser than the next man but He accepted to be the least of all that you may be elevated. Come to Him. Accept Him. For He accepted to become undesirable that you may be desirable; washed of the grime of sin. That you may receive salvation through confession. That your frustration may know liberation. That longing may find belonging. That mere mortal may know eternity. That the weak may be strong and the 'unloved' may finally realise that they were loved all along. So, if you truly are yearning for more, open the door.