Sunday, April 8, 2012

Because You're Worth It

One of the amazing things about God, is that after a lifetime of knowing him, there is always so much more to know, so much more to learn, so much more to experience.

I've been to many Easter Services, having grown up in the church.  I've watched The Passion many times.  I've remembered Christ's death regularly in times of communion.  But last night, during our Good Friday service, a few things occurred to me that I want to think on, ponder, and let go deep into my spirit, because I think it has the power to effect how I see Jesus' love for me, and for the lost.
I was pondering the physical pain and suffering, as well as the emotional pain and suffering, that Jesus endured while being arrested, beaten, carrying the cross, and during the actual crucifixion.  It dawned on me in a new way that Jesus actually felt every whip lash, every rejection, every nail, every breath he struggled for while on the cross, and he felt the very real abandonment of his father when he cried out, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

Jesus was 100% human, and 100% God - it's hard to fathom.  But it's easy to focus on the 100% God part without really realising it.  To think, he knew the plan, it had a purpose, and he was God, so he could hack it.  But he was also 100% human, and he felt all of it, the same way you and I would have, if we'd gone through those things.  He wasn't exempt from either physical or emotional pain, just because he was God's son.

There was the physical pain, there was the emotional pain, but what had to hurt the most was the sense of abandonment from his Father.  Have you even stopped to think about what Jesus gave up for us? For you?  I'm not sure I'd really thought about it.

Think about it now.

In heaven, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit were complete.  100% totally complete within themselves.  Everything they ever needed, they had.  Their relationship was perfect, complete and needed nothing or no one else.

In heaven, not just when we get there, but now, there is no tears, there is no pain, there is no suffering.
So Jesus left a perfect and complete relationship, he left a place where there was no suffering, and he came to earth - to be rejected and to suffer - for us.

That perfect relationship of the trinity was broken, temporarily, on the cross - for us.

Jesus chose to suffer, to feel intense physical pain and to shed tears - for us.

We look forward to the day when we see our saviour face to face, when we reach heaven, that wonderful place of no tears and no suffering.  But just for a moment, imagine you were already there, living in that perfect place.  Imagine choosing to leave it, just because your love for someone else was so great, so overwhelmingly powerful, that you had to go in search for them.  To do all you could, to compel them to come to that place too.

That's what Jesus did - for me.  For you.  And for everyone that still walks in rejection of him.  
Jesus' love for us was so big, so powerful, so intense, that he could not leave us in our sin and our suffering.  He had to do all he could to show us his love and to give us a way to be in that perfect place with him.  He was willing to give up that perfect relationship and that perfect place, because we were worth it.  I was worth it.  YOU were worth it.

And once we recognise that, and choose Him, that same incredible love lives in us.  And the only way those that still walk in rejection of him are going to choose him, is to see that love for themselves.
And how will they see if, if we are not living it?  But that's probably a whole other blog post....

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

I Want To See God Today

So I've decided that if I'm going to write, I might actually need to pick up a pen occasionally, or hit "new post" on my blog more than once every few months.  I read a book recently.  I wasn't a particularly great book, but one of the characters in the book ended up going to a writing class.  The most memorable part of the book for me, was when her teacher said, "Write everyday.  It might be the most trivial of things that you write about, but write everyday."  And in pondering that instruction, I can see the wisdom in it.  To sit around and wait for the next big idea to come along, does not make me a writer.  Picking up the pen and putting some words on the page, is what makes me a writer - not necessarily a good one, but a writer none the less.  And if I'm not writing regularly, then it will be harder to pen the big ideas, when/if they do come.  

So I've made a few changes in my life, rearranged a few priority's in my head.  I'm putting the important things first, and letting the necessary, but not life defining things, fit in around the important things.  And one of those things, for me, is writing.  So everyday, my intention is to write "something."  Don't worry, I'll not be putting all the trivial stuff on here and boring you to tears.  But I'm going to write and enjoy putting words on the page, because it's one of the things that God has put in my heart to do.

So today, this is what ended up on my page, and I'd like to share it with you.

I want to see God today.  Does that sound crazy?  Like it's too much to ask for?  How will I see God today?  Actually, God's just there - sitting on the couch right next me.  But I won't see Him unless I look up.  I guess if I want to see God today, it's up to me to look.  God doesn't tend to play hide and seek, not very well anyway, he hides out in the open and we only need to open our eyes to see Him.

When I'm looking - God's easy to see in His word, so very easy to see in worship, often He's even easy to see in trail and hardship.  But I want to see God today - in a different kind of way.  I want to see God today - by looking for Him in you.

You were made in God's image - whether you know that or not, whether you even know God or not.  So there is something of the beauty, the wonder, the goodness of God, IN YOU - and I want to see it.

YOU could be one of my closest friends, my child, my workmate, the checkout chick, or that person across the counter at work that just drives me nuts.  But there is something of the image of God in YOU, and I'll see it if I will only look for it.

If I can see God today, in you, then serving you becomes easier; your pain becomes something I can help you bear; and your joy becomes something I can share.

If I can see God today, in you, then I know I'll be a better person for taking the time to see.  And maybe you'll be a better person too, because someone took the time to see God in you.