When I sin, there begins a battle.

The battle wasn’t there before I sinned,

for before I sinned, I either believed I was worthy of God’s love

or I rested content that I was adequately satisfied in God’s love.

Now the battle is there.

Am I willing to accept that He loves me?

This takes humility, and I fear I’m not capable.

I would rather remain angry with myself, for this provides me

at least a thin veil of foliage with which to cover my vulnerability before the Justice.

It’s not that I increase my resolve into frantic efforts at self-improvement,

for I’ve long since despaired of any lasting change brought about by my impressive moral resolutions.

So I stand still, grasping my façade of foliage till my knuckles pale and clenched fists cramp.

But, my anger does not suffice.

I do not love Justice adequately enough to authorize myself to judge.

Once upon a time, we stood without shame, vulnerably posed before a Justice that posed no threat.

But we no longer know that Justice – though He has never changed.

I am transfixed by fear and obsessed with the specter of guilt between myself and justice.

My anger cannot pierce the phantom, yet suddenly the phantom is pierced.

A hand emerges from the dissipating mists.

It is pierced too.

My fists fall limp.

I’m horrified.

Why has Justice Himself been crucified on my behalf?

How is it that I recognize Justice once again, despite never knowing Him before,

despite His face being disfigured beyond recognition?

Oh God, my God!

how much of my social justice impulse is grasped tightly

– even as my own foliage is?

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