Sunday, October 31, 2010

No Greater Love

The children led in worship this morning at church. They were an inspiration to most if not all who were there, for they didn't "perform"... they worshiped.  As they did, a theme emerged: the death and resurrection of Jesus so that we might live.

That sounds so basic, so very "yeah, so tell me something I DON'T know..."  But that's just it, isn't it?  Haven't we become blasé about the cross, about the great love of God?  haven't we become so used to it that we take it for granted? that we've forgotten the fiery hell from which He saved us?

Do we even really believe that He loves us?

I don't know about you but I have a hard time sometimes believing it.  My life experiences and my own woundedness get in the way and all of a sudden His love seems the farthest thing from my consciousness.  That's why when I saw the movie "Matthew" based on the gospel of Matthew (the photos are from that movie starring Bruce Marchiano as Jesus) the two words that come to me uppermost are love - and joy.

Can we not believe that Jesus joyed in the healing miracles He performed? that He didn't get a kick out of seeing someone with leprosy be able to touch members of his own family again for the first time in years? Of course He did!  Love oozed from Him because He was walking daily with the Father - by the power of the Holy Spirit - just as He said we would be able to do after He went back to the Father.

And when He died on a Roman cross, put there by His own people, can we not believe that the love and compassion He showed there on that day was just as much for us as it was for those who had beaten Him, ripped out His beard, and drove the nails in His body?

One of my favorite scenes in the movie is when Jesus heals the leper who believes that Jesus CAN heal him - but WILL He??  See the love.... in the clip below.


One old alcoholic lady, sober for years through the AA program (which in itself is a blueprint for a relationship with God) said this:  "I know not whether God in His mercy will open the gates of Heaven for me.  All I know is that He opened the gates of hell for me ... and let me out."

What if we could get a glimpse of just how much He loves us?  What if we could dare to believe that and let it sink deep into our spirits?  One thing is sure: we would never need to TRY to talk to people about our faith.  We couldn't help ourselves... not because we felt we should - but because (and only because) we are so grateful that He loves us.  

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