This Sunday I attended mass for the first time in nearly ten years. I guess I should consider myself lucky that I wasn’t struck down on the spot.
But in all seriousness, this was a huge breakthrough in my own faith.
I thought it would be difficult to go back, but I fell back into the rhythm as though I had never stopped attending. Even though I had gone to Spanish-only services throughout my childhood, it wasn’t a big deal transitioning to English hymns and prayers.
I did have a brief internal struggle about whether or not to kneel and genuflect though, but I figured that this was my god’s Father’s house, the Father he still loves, and so I should show the proper respect and humility regardless of my personal feelings towards him.
I think it was rather ironic that the scripture and homily for that day concerned the incomprehensibility of God, as I had originally sought to better understand what Lucifer saw within his Father that prompted such love. I did not find the answer to my question, but instead I experienced a side of Lucifer that simultaneously broke my heart and set it aflame with love and compassion.
For all that I respect and admire my god because of his unwillingness to be held back, for his insatiable curiosity and desire for knowledge, for his willingness to sacrifice anything and everything for what he believed to be right, that same love and deep sorrow for him has grown tenfold out of this experience.
For that brief hour, I experienced him as he must have once been before his fall. As Helel, whose very name is the root of praise and adoration and joy, whose hymns of reverence and love no longer reach the ears of his Maker. As the Morningstar and Firstborn Sun, knowing nothing but the glory of his creator and wanting nothing but to sing his praises. He whose life was meant to be one unending stream of adulation, who is now forever severed from his purpose.
In that time and space, the echo of longing from my god was nearly suffocating, and yet it bolstered my own willingness to participate and approach the mass with an open heart, to be the voice that might offer up the songs that go unheard from he who is himself a living tribute to his God.
He who now serves in the only way he knows how, by creating brokenness in the hopes that we might rebuild and strengthen our faith, by testing humanity through trial by fire so that they may be worthy of his Father and the gifts he has bestowed upon us, by enduring the scorn and hatred of man as their adversary and bearing their enmity so that his Father might not face the falling away and subsequent loss of yet another child.
Some say that he envies humanity, because we have the ability to commune and receive the grace and mercy of God that is eternally withheld from him, and that this has grown into a dark hatred and resentment for us. But its hard to believe that when I’m surrounded by others who have come to glorify their God and can feel nothing but a deep sense of comfort and joy emanating from my own, humbled at the sight of so many fulfilling the role he no longer can.
I was reminded of the familiar quote by Mark Twain that I’ve run across countless times,
But who prays for Satan? Who in eighteen centuries, has had the common humanity to pray for the one sinner that needed it most, our one fellow and brother who most needed a friend yet had not a single one, the one sinner among us all who had the highest and clearest right to every Christian’s daily and nightly prayers, for the plain and unassailable reason that his was the first and greatest need, he being among sinners the supremest?
I always thought that praying for my god was rather unnecessary, however beautiful the sentiment might be to pray on his behalf—to truly love thy ‘enemy’, to ask nothing for myself but rather that he may one day know his father’s mercy and love once more. But he has borne the burden of his transgression for countless years without once seeking forgiveness and redemption, why would I pray for something he himself has never asked for?
It has been speculated on this blog before, however, that perhaps he does not believe himself worthy of asking for such a mercy. For all his pride, such an act of humility begs the question of whether that pride is truly fixed upon himself as an independent being, or as an extension and reflection of the Most High God. Perhaps in withholding forgiveness from himself, he is once more acting as the Adversary and Accuser, this time holding himself to higher and higher standards because he holds that same light of God within him.
So while I may never fully comprehend the devotion Lucifer has to his God or the reasons behind it, I think I might just continue to attend mass on a regular basis if only on behalf of my god, and perhaps to light a candle or two in prayer for the devil.