Sunday, March 23, 2014

Hands and Feet

Yesterday Roscoe had some visitors. Raymond Fox (a wise man whom I respect greatly) asked what changes I had seen in Roscoe in recent weeks that were new. I thought a little about it and responded that lots of his recent developments centered around his interactions with the world around him.

Roscoe's eyes have gained more focus, although he always tends to drift off and stare at a curtain instead of my face. His feet and legs are still stronger. His hands, especially, seem to move with more intent than the random flailing and spasms that he had previously. In the videos below, you'll notice him actively moving and playing with his hands and responding more directly.

In short, he's starting to gain more control over his physical self to make it do what he wants. Now that doesn't mean that he can speak clearly or get up and tap dance (why that is something I assume he wants to do, I don't know). It makes me wonder: we see Roscoe's actions, but what is he intending to do? He is further along the progression of self-control than he was before, but he can't completely control his body yet. That makes me reflect upon myself.

God has given me a body, abilities, opportunities, and interactions. In each of these, do I look like I'm randomly flailing or spasming, or am I controlling myself to do exactly what I intend? Paul wrote a passage (Romans 7:15-25) that discusses the struggle of self-control in spiritual terms.

I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 
As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 
For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.
For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 
For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 
Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 
For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me,
waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 
What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 
Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

The opening phrase "I do not understand what I do" made me relate to Roscoe's situation. We are all grown-up, yet sometimes we are just like him. Hopefully just like Roscoe, each day brings better self-control than the last. When God looks down at us, does he see a baby's arm spasms or does he see a baby tap dancing?

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