Alot of people will be thinking and talking about Jesus over the next week. More so than usual. This is exciting to me. I think about Jesus every day. Mostly, I wonder and marvel at his infinite mercy and grace. I do not deserve it. I never can earn it. Thats the unparalleled beauty of his message. You dont have to change to believe him, but if you do believe him change is inevitable, even irresistible. Once I believe I can never fall from his grace.
So as Easter approaches, I have this message to deliver to Jesus. Maybe he reads my blog.
No matter where I go, you are there and you still love me. Nothing can ever separate me from your love. Nothing I do. I cant perform well to earn your love. I have done no good thing to deserve your mercy and grace. Your love is amazing. Its incomprehensible. Its above all human capacity for goodness. You do not discriminate. You don’t play favorites or practice politics. You are infinitely Just, divinely Merciful and ultimately Loving. You are life giving, awe inspiring, time transcending, always forgiving.
Even as King David, who you describe as a man after your own heart, proclaimed to you after committing the most terrible acts of murder and adultery:
O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do.
You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord. You go before me and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand!
I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence! If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the grave, you are there. If I ride the wings of the morning,if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me.
I could ask the darkness to hide me and the light around me to become night- but even in darkness I cannot hide from you. To you the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to you.
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous-how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me,O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
O God, if only you would destroy the wicked! Get out of my life, you murderers! They blaspheme you; your enemies misuse your name. O Lord, shouldn’t I hate those who hate you? Shouldn’t I despise those who oppose you? Yes, I hate them with total hatred, for your enemies are my enemies.
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.
You know me, you know what I am capable of, yet you still love me and nothing can ever separate me from your love.
Its all because of you that I am what I am.
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.
For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs-heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all-how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died-more than that, who was raised to life-is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Thank you Jesus. Justice and Mercy meet on the cross. Its by grace and love that I am saved. I am free. Thank you Jesus.
THAT’S MY KING!!
If you have ever seen the “Thats My King” video, this is the remixed version by Igniter Media and Bart Damer, who used to work at our church. Oh how I wish he still did!
5 Comments Add yours
I believe that you break God’s heart when you hate ANYONE–regardless of who YOU see as God’s (or your own) enemies, judgment is up to God, and not up to us. We can’t see as God sees, or understand as God understands; all we can do is face ourselves and our own shortcomings rather than despising others because they are different. Jesus (regardless of how his teachings were later re-interpreted to convince people that they were somehow superior to those who were different, and to gain power for themselves on earth) tried SO hard to teach that, and died because those who preferred hate and earthly, fallible judgment and power to love didn’t want to hear it.
“God desires mercy, not sacrifice.”
Just some thoughts… I hope you’ll give them some thought (very pretty picture, by the way!).
A fair response Sara. Just know that the part you are referring to is taken straight from the scriptures. Psalm 139. Not my words, Davids, as inspired by God.
I dont see anything in the blog post about “despising others because they are different,” but I respect that you felt the freedom to express yourself in response to a personal letter I wrote to Jesus and posted for the world to see.
May he continue to move in your spirit this week!
It is a beautiful letter. My only problem with the concept of hating “the wicked” is that, left to human interpretation, it can (and often is) interpreted very subjectively and freely, and lead to violence against those that WE (not God, necessarily) view as “wicked”, or whose beliefs differ from our own. I can’t believe that God would have been anything but horrified by, for example, the Inquisition, the Crusades, the Holocaust, or any of the many other instances (large-scale, or small) in which people were hurt or killed because their views about who God is were different. You don’t sound like someone who would condone those kinds of things either, but there are others in the world who take those kinds of words (whether from the Scriptures or not) out of context to use to justify acts of hate.
I guess I was just “moved in spirit” to point that out!
Hey there- thanks for providing clarity there. I think we are on the same page about that:) I actually thought about leaving that paragraph out when I pasted it into the letter.
In anycase, I appreciate your comments!
HalleluYAH! My soul beamed from reading your letter to our Lord!!
I love the Psalms and especially Psalm 34 as it says:
“Honor the LORD”
I will always praise the LORD. With all my heart, I will praise the LORD. Let all who are helpless, listen and be glad. Honor the LORD with me! Celebrate HIS great name.
I asked the LORD for help, and HE saved me from all my fears.
Keep your eyes on the LORD! You will shine like the sun
and never blush with shame.
I was a nobody, but I prayed, and the LORD saved me
from all my troubles.
If you honor the LORD, His angel will protect you.
Discover for yourself that the LORD is kind. Come to Him for protection, and you will be glad.
Honor the LORD! You are His special people. No one who honors the LORD will ever be in need.
Young lions may go hungry or even starve, but if you trust the LORD, you will never miss out on anything good.
Come, my children, listen as I teach you to respect the LORD.
Do you want to live and enjoy a long life?
Then don’t say cruel things and don’t tell lies.
Do good instead of evil and try to live at peace.
If you obey the LORD, He will watch over you and answer your prayers. But God despises evil people, and He will wipe them all from the earth, till they are forgotten.
When His people pray for help, He listens and rescues them from their troubles.
The LORD is there to rescue all who are discouraged
and have given up hope.
The LORD’s people may suffer a lot, but He will always
bring them safely through.
Not one of their bones will ever be broken.
Wicked people are killed by their own evil deeds, and if you hate God’s people you will be punished.
The LORD saves the lives of His servants. Run to Him for protection, and you won’t be punished”.
Amen! How blessed we are to belong to HIM!!!