“It is not a question of God sending us to hell. In each of us there is something growing, which will be hell unless it is nipped in the bud... hell begins with a grumbling mood, always complaining, always blaming others.”
— C.S. Lewis (1898–1963)
The stuff we are made of isn’t very good. Our mortal material, the flesh of our bones, and what that symbolises, is the source of destruction. We are impacted whether we like it or not, as we impact each other detrimentally it seems.
We are destined for a self-sourced hell if that be our will, because our will is in opposition to God’s. Without a stringent effort to strain forward—an ambitious focus on God alone—we have no hope. But in straining forward we are, at the same time, trusting God through our surrender:
Grumbling, complaining, and blaming are no longer to be part of our agenda.
What Lies Beyond the Self-Sourced Hell Experience
If we can agree for a moment that hell is a self-sourced reality—as we willingly, or in deception, turn away from God—we have a way of negating such a reality.
As I’ve mentioned, we must undertake upon our daily relationship with the Lord our God. If we do not undertake, if we do not focus, we cannot realise the vast potential that lies within us as new creations in Jesus Christ.
This faith life—the life beyond the self-sourced hell—is ever so simple.
But we mess it up in complications of theological grandeur. We make God out to be hard to please, when in reality the Lord simply wants us to understand that the most viable heaven-reality is sourced in virtue: in being patient, kind, compassionate, humble, and full of grace.
The only way we grow in virtue is through practice.
Our only protection against this festering reality that is a cancerous hell is the genuine acclamation of praise afforded through the application of virtue.
And for it to be effective it must be our sole aim: that we would focus so much on our Lord that Fruits of the Spirit would emerge in abundance.
In a heavily relational life we must connect the dots; that our sins are resolved by the grace afforded us in Christ’s sacrifice and in the Spiritual power made free so we could chase a life of virtue with all we have.
What good is correct doctrine when we cannot be free in the Lord?
Jesus died for our sins so that we could, once and for all, focus on him who overcomes; who helps us overcome our grumbling, complaining, and blaming.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.