Piper on Joy, Tragedy, and Despair

John Piper:

Soren Kierkegaard said, “When the age loses the tragic, it gains despair.”

This sounds profoundly right.

The elements of life that make tragedy possible are the same as the ones that fight off despair. For tragedy to be real there has to be something hugely precious, and there has to be the capacity to feel a great emotion. When these are both present, tragedy can happen.

Despair is the horrible blankness that settles over us when nothing is seen as precious anymore and there is no capacity to feel it anyway.

As great as our tragedy may be, if we feel it to the full, it is a sign that the weapons against despair are still in place.

Often the gifts of God come in strange pairs. “It has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake” (Philippians 1:29).

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s