This is from novelist Ian McEwan’s piece on his relationship with Christopher Hitchens.
THE place where Christopher Hitchens spent his last few weeks was hardly bookish, but he made it his own. Close to downtown Houston is the Medical Center, a cluster of high-rises like La Défense of Paris, or London’s City, a financial district of a sort, where the common currency is illness.
This complex is one of the world’s great concentrations of medical expertise and technology. Its highest building denies the possibility of a benevolent god — a neon sign proclaims from its roof a cancer hospital for children. This “clean-sliced cliff,” as Larkin puts it in his poem about a tower-block hospital, was right across the way from Christopher’s place — which was not quite as high, and adults only.
The highlighting is mine.
That sentence is a call to arms for every apologetic cell in a Christian’s body. But for a moment, let’s just listen.
This is also a very clear, and very poignant, insight into how many think about God. If we have been enabled to reconcile the benevolence of God with a children’s cancer hospital, then let us be grateful to God, but let us as well be sympathetic to those yet to make peace with one of the hardest realities in a broken and fallen world.
And let us pray that we all, especially at Christmas, may have a clear vision of a benevolent God’s breaking into this broken world through a Child.
One thought on “For Understanding”
Wow, a short but a beautiful post. “And let us pray that we all, especially at Christmas, may have a clear vision of a benevolent God’s breaking into this broken world through a Child.” Amen.
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