KIERKEGAARD WROTE that, “Christianity does not at all emphasize the idea of earthly beauty …” When I read this statement, I was at first left to wonder how such a brilliant mind could write something so off target. He had to be wrong. I began to read once again through the Bible, particularly the Psalms, looking to prove Kierkegaard’s error. Eventually I had to close my eyes and think for awhile. Slowly I began to grasp Kierkegaard’s words.
IN JUNE 1944, WHILE WAITING TO BE EXECUTED in a Nazi prison cell, Dietrich Bonheoffer wrote some of the most soul searching poetry I’ve encountered. The marching boots of certain death approached with each tick of the clock. In this condition of unimaginable anxiety, his words plunged with unmasked veracity into the freedom of truth. In one poem called Who Am I? he wrote the following lines: