REFLECT – Day 8:
How do you imagine God to be? A man on a cloud with a long white beard? Perhaps a bit more like santa who is waiting for you to mess up so he can put you on his naughty list? Maybe you picture a baby, as we always do around the Christmas season? Or do you see a image of stain glass window or a piece of art work by a famous artist?
Well, Jesus breaks down our false pictures of God. God is not remote or far off or cold. God is near and with us in our suffering and reaches out to us in love.
Today, open your bibles to John 11:28-35 and read of Jesus’ weeping. Contrast this passage with those images you have had or still have of God and notice how Jesus is always revealing God’s true essence.
Jesus stands at the tomb of lazarus his friend. He sees the grief of Martha and Mary and the pain of the crowd. He is greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. He, too, begins to weep. Immense power combines with deep vulnerability.
This vulnerability shows us that Jesus did indeed become human and lived a life remarkable similar to ours in terms of feeling emotion and experiencing life ups and downs. God in human flesh. Think about it. Amazing right? God making himself relatable, God being able to truly empathise with us.
Death spoils and corrupts our lives and robs us of those we love. Grief is the most bitter pain we know. But death, our enemy, does not have the last word.
Jesus comes to give his life so that the power of death is broken. The raising of Lazarus is a sign of a greater resurrection: Jesus will rise on the third day and open the way for all people to inherit eternal life.
This is where we really see Jesus’ divine nature meet his human vulnerability. In His willingness to sacrifice himself. However the vulnerability wasn’t weakness, in fact it was the means of displaying immense Godly power and sovereignty.
Amazing how this relatable God, became relatable to offer us such a gift. Hope in the mourning. Eternal hope and salvation.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven, he is seated at the right hand of the Father; and he will come to judge the living and the dead.
The Apostles’ Creed.
On the stroke of each hour today, remember the hope of the resurrection. Notice what difference this makes.