The Last week-end I heard a priest of the Carmalite order give a talk on the spiritual life. He used this phrase, “relax, it’s finished.” It is one of those phrases that stick with you. Upon further reflection, I began making application to my own life. Then I began to apply it to the life of a wildman. The men who read this blog, are drawn to the idea of a wildman. It speaks to the untapped spiritual energy that lies latent in their hearts. They are men who are believing and practicing a faith that does not seem to bring change. Many are saying, there must be more to my journey of faith. A wildman is ready for change. The key to this change is transformation. For transformation to take affect, a man will have to come out of the control tower of reason and be open to the inner journey of the heart. This does not mean a kind of navel-gazing, where a man has to dig around in his soul, but rather a kind of openness to the work of the Spirit, where a man is willing to risk “coming to know himself.”
There are those who will misinterpret the concept of a wildman. It can easily create the impression of men throwing off all restraint, acting irresponsibly without regard for others, especially women. But nothing could be further from the truth. Remember in the wildman journey, it is God doing the work from the inside out. This is where the phrase “relax, it’s finished” comes has application. If a wildman is willing to trust Christ as His Lord, then he can come to the awareness of what Christ has already done for him. This becomes not simply truth in the mind, but reality in the heart. He can say, “My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Gal 2:20-21). The Message puts it this way,”Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not ‘mine’ but it lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I am not going to go back on that.”
So there you have it!! The work is finished. It is all about what Jesus has done. Transformation is always about crucifixtion of our old nature, so that the new life in Christ may come forth. It is all the work of Christ in our hearts. The work is done. What is our part. We are to trust the process. We live as Paul says because Christ loves us and gave his life for us. That it!! The whole package. It takes a life time to rest in this reality. This is “incarnational reality.” Christ coming into the deepest part of our souls, bringing the reality of His cruciform love, to liberate us from the destructive and dehumanizing bondage of our old nature. Remember this is all God’s work. Relax, it finished.
The difficulty for men is the sense that we have to do something, be deserving of God’s grace and mercy. Certainly this work of transformation in our hearts involves some effort on our part. No, the work of death and resurrection is the work of Jesus’ presence in our heart. Our part is to trust the process, learning to be obedient to the loving prompting of the Spirit. That is the stance of a wildman. It brings a freedom that releases the true life in Christ. That’s what a wildman experiences. He can declare with Paul, “Christ has set us free to live a free life. So take your stand! Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you” Gal 5:1 – The Message. Men, take your stand on letting Jesus do the inner work in your heart. Don’t allow the dominant male culture tempt you to escape back into the control tower of reason and control.