All five of my children have gone to the library, which has afforded me a very rare moment to be (physically) alone. Naturally, I immediately set out to cleaning and straightening a few things, and, talking to God. These days, I sometimes don’t feel able to do much more than ask Him to help me. I need help loving people when they are at their worst. I need help in being gracious when I want to go completely ballistic, telling people off in a manner that I feel they are so deserving. I need help in having compassion for those who are oblivious to their need to change destructive behaviors and patterns. I need help minding my life, attitudes, behaviors, thoughts and business, instead of concerning myself with that of others around me. My stuff is a lot, all on it’s own.
All this led me to consider Jesus. Seriously, how did Jesus do this? How could he look with love and compassion, blessing and healing those who would later scream, “Crucify him!!!” How did he do that? How could he smile, eat, drink, laugh and hang out with people who were utterly selfish, self serving, cruel, rude and more? How could he hand over the money bag to a man that he knew would steal from them all and eventually, literally sell him out? How could he not look at Judas, in this case, and not punch him square in the face? My God! How did Jesus do all this?!
I sit here and consider myself and others, and how when we are betrayed or hurt, we feel as if we are the only ones who have these feelings. We feel justified and sometimes go to great lengths to ensure that justice is served in one way or another. We hope they pay for what they did to us, all the while, we are blind to our own offenses against others and God.
We want to see everyone “pay the piper”, except us, of course. We want that ‘get out of jail free’ card. When it comes to us, we want mercy and compassion. The same mercy and compassion we deem others unfit to receive, from us, and God. Lord help us. My prayer is that we truly learn to love as Jesus loves. To seek after the best for others, not just ourselves. The Bible says that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. We weren’t looking for him. We didn’t want or choose him. He chose and still chooses us. Good and bad. Ugly and pretty. Nice and nasty. We are immeasurably, irrevocably, and deeply loved. Abba, help us to love as you do- with no limits or conditions.