“…the peculiar kind of clarity which Hell affords.” -C.S. Lewis
I’ve been struggling with clarity of late. Just knowing that something is amiss, but unsure as to its source. Does that happen to you? Do you go around knowing that something isn’t right, but you can’t figure it out. Is it something physical, spiritual, emotional, hormonal? It just eludes you.
In my readings this morning, I came across an excerpt from a C.S. Lewis book, The Screwtape Letters, in which the author mentions that Hell itself affords a certain kind of clarity. The irony, of course, is that Hell of all places will not lend clarity to anyone because it can’t. Clarity is inextricably bound to truth, so we cannot have clarity apart from being grounded in truth, and we all know that truth cannot stand on its own without connection to eternal Truth Himself.
There are many things over which we will never have clarity. But some things have been given us that are very clear. “I am the way and the truth and the life.” There’s clarity in that statement. But it’s ego-dystonic if we view ourselves as the only way to freedom, or the only truth worth noting, or the person that imparts life to our situation. It’s all very subtle, though. Because Hell wants it that way. Sin resides most prominently in the creases of our subtleties. But Heaven stands in opposition to subtlety. God Himself has never been elusive. There is no shade of doubt when God presents his messages. And His greatest Message lived among us and provided the kind of clarity that we all longed for but never knew we needed. He was the eternal Drink that finally rested on the parched lips of our lives.
So as I sit here wondering about the nature of something I can’t define, I forget that, of all things, He is the most clear “thing” about my life. And suddenly I understand that there’s a more compelling clarity that only Heaven affords.