Friday, February 18, 2011

Hard Light

Don't you find it funny... the strange places we often find inspiration? It never ceases to amuse or amaze me.

Take today for instance... I was randomly ambling around town in my lunch hour when my mind wandered onto the topic of Red Dwarf... specifically an episode of the sixth series - Legion.

In this particular episode the hologram Arnold Rimmer becomes  the beneficiary of a technological advancement that literally transforms his existence. Up until this episode, Rimmer had been restricted to wandering around as a soft light hologram... he couldn't touch anything. This had been his fate since his death (due to his own inept skill as a 2nd technician that resulted in the death of nearly all Red Dwarf's crew).

However, upon encountering an artificial intelligence entity that dubbed itself Legion; Rimmer acquires a new lease of life. Legion reaches inside Rimmer's form and yanks out his "light bee" (the source of his outward projection). He then proceeds to open it and pull out a ridiculously large amount of spaghettified tangled wire from within, before discarding it and popping a single lump of plastic inside and rebooting a startled Rimmer, complete with a new coloured uniform and the wonder of a new "hard light" drive.

As Rimmer soon discovered, he could touch and taste things... interact with people and objects on a more human level. He also discovered that he was now virtually indestructible. Yes, he could still feel the full range of senses and emotions... including pain, but he was secure in the knowledge that this pain would be unlikely to ever mean his end.

Armed with this new indestructibility, the previously selfish, conniving, cowardly Rimmer should have had an epiphany... with no need to worry about his own preservation any more... surely he should have been free to help others so much more?

But that's not Rimmer's story.

In fact for what's remains of his time on board... precious little changes. There are brief glimpses of his potential, little flashes of brilliance that reveal a kernel of something greater... but it isn't until the original character's final adventure "Stoke Me A Clipper" that he embraces (albeit awkwardly), his destiny and unlocks his potential.

It got me wondering... can Christians be like this?

Like Rimmer our lives became a mere projection of what we should be because of our own fallibility and fallen nature - sin. Yet, just like Rimmer we have received a gift... the greatest gift in fact - eternal life. In terms of spirituality we have become indestructible, we can feel the pain and agony from blows that temporal life sometimes deals us... but we can be certain that these things will never overcome us to the point of destruction:

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;  persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.
2 Corinthians 4:7-9

Shouldn't this gift, this promise of life abundant and the all-surpassing power from God change our outlook? Shouldn't that change something?

Shouldn't that change everything?
For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.  And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.

So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.  Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!  All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.  God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
2 Corinthians 5:14-21
We need to look hard at our lives and see if they are in step with Christ. The Old Testament has an expression that articulates this idea, it says we must look to the rock from which we were cut. It means looking at the example Christ laid down for us and aspiring to it. It's a big ask...

You might think that in your walk with God, you are just a hamster trundling around a tiny wheel... but the way of the cougar is just through that door. All you need to do is open yourself up to the Spirit and keep your gaze fixed on Christ. Jesus said that if you have faith the size of a mustard seed you could tell a mountain to throw itself in the ocean. So if you have faith the size of a hamster, becoming a cougar doesn't seem that far off... does it?

In short:

Love God...

Love your neighbour...

Be the cougar... 


  1. I love the analogy you’ve drawn here. It is so easy to settle for simply minimizing the potential pains of day-to-day life, and yet, God intends so much more for us.

    Romans 8:37 says that “…we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” I need to remember that my actions should reflect that. Thank you for the reminder. :)

  2. Loved this post! When you are filled with the love of Jesus Christ, you are able to see and find Him everywhere and in all things. Never lose this sight my brother. I will be back often!

    Three-Fold Cord--Meditations on God


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