Eclipse Devotion #5: The First Church of La Push: Thoughts on Cultic Christianity
I barreled down the wet highway, turning the windshield wipers on high and ignoring the groan of the ancient engine. Fifty-five was the most I could coax out of my truck, and I prayed it would be enough.
I had no clue where the boundary line was, but I began to feel safer as I passed the first houses outside La Push. This must be beyond where Alice was allowed to follow….
Before I could cut the engine, Jacob was standing in the door, his face blank with shock….
“Bella!” he yelled back, and the smile I’d been waiting for stretched across his face like the sun breaking free of the clouds…..”I can’t believe it!”…”Wow! It’s good to see you here!”
…”Welcome back, Bella,” he said, grinning. And the way he said the words made it sound like welcome home.
Eclipse, Chapter 4
Vampires and werewolves can never seem to get along. It keeps getting worse as the fight for Bella’s heart, soul, and human life takes over even the prejudices between the supernatural species.
Throughout the middle of Eclipse Bella begins to sneak away to see Jacob at La Push; somewhere Edward’s protective arms and Alice’s prophetic visions cannot follow.
Though Bella believes she’s simply going to see her best friend, and her adoptive Quileute family, something greater is happening.
Earlier, we touched on the juxtapositioning of Edward and Jacob as being the choice we all must make between the Spirit and the Flesh.
What I want to put emphasis on here is the natural outflow of that same choice. The pull of an earthly family is making her steal time from her eternal family.
Have you ever been put in the position of choosing between your Lord and your Church? I have.
It can start small, much in the same way Bella’s conflict did: a hurt, a question, a doubt of her eternal lover’s feelings.
We need each other, our friends, to surround us in love to care and to pray with. This is a beautiful part of living in community.
But as we move on in our walk with God in that community, sometimes a hairline fracture occurs between that Body and the Lord. Prayers can become strained, more emphasis placed on works of the flesh. Greater emphasis is placed upon the traditions of man than the commandments of God.
Suddenly we find ourselves owned by a cult than belonging to a once free-flowing spiritual family.
I say this because, as previously outlined, Jacob started out as Bella’s Jesus with skin on when Edward was gone. She fell into a community in La Push that she could be herself with; they shared a supernatural bond.
However, when her eternal lover returned, and her time of wilderness had ended, Jacob felt pushed aside. Afterall, Bella was his. He began to stand between her and eternity; afterall…this is one thing the Wolf Pack doesn’t have. They do not have the gift of eternal life.
Make no mistake, any Church who makes you choose between following your Lord and keeping your Membership is no home for you. Like Jacob, they have a sense of ownership over those entrusted in their care and this is both dangerous and wrong.
Learn from Bella’s mistake and keep your first love your top priority, if we do, we can press on into eternal life in Christ, our eternal lover.
2I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. 3You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. 4Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love….7He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God (Revelation 2:2-4,7).