A Key for Whatever is Locked Away

“O great, holy God, I pray to You: Open my own interiority to me so that I properly know what I am. Unlock that within me which was locked shut in Adam. Let me see and discover in my interiority of mind the beautiful morning-star in the holy Name JESUS, which offers itself out of grace to us poor men, and dwells in us and wishes to work powerfully in us.”

Jacob Boehme, The Way to Christ (New York and Mahwah, NJ: Paulist Press, 1978), p. 93.

So often we are closed off even from ourselves. We are unaware of the obstacles that keep us from grace. We work harder only to strain ourselves against unseen limits, the very limits that are killing us.

I like Boehme’s notion that something within us was locked shut in Adam. Even those of us who have traveled quite far along the Way can have parts of ourselves that are still locked out of sight for fear or shame.

In this season of Advent, for the purpose of meditation, I’d like to tie this to one of the O Antiphons.

O Key of David and scepter of the House of Israel;

you open and no one can shut;

you shut and no one can open:

Come and lead the prisoners from the prison house,

those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

Truly, Christ is the Key of David, and the bright morning star.

Come, Lord Jesus!

The Rev. Bill Carroll serves as Rector of the Church of the Good Shepherd in Athens, Ohio. His parish blog is at here

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