March 3, 2015

All This For Love

The world is a broken place.

Can you imagine a time when life was perfectly beautiful? We walked about barefoot in the grass, knowing that no stone would hurt us. We danced about in the rain, never getting cold or tired. And we could love with our whole soul, not one part left for ourselves.

But then it was shattered by the atomic bomb of sin and we were chained as slaves to such evil.  The world rocked, the largest earthquake of them all, and buildings collapsed, dreams were crushed, and souls were stained. And it's been like this for millenniums; broken people in a broken world. There is so much destruction, death, decay, and debris; as we try to walk amongst it, we are constantly hurt and cut by the shreds, dragging our heavy chains.

The world is a broken place...
For some, such excruciating pain means to fall to your knees, clutching at your bleeding wounds, cursing the ground you've walked on, cursing whoever made you. Some of those men and women will get up, determined to fight back and lash out in anger and hatred, like the painful cord of a whip. These are the hurting people; with no balm for the pain, they will fight angrily against it.

But others, they won't get up out of the rubble. They'll prostrate themselves in the dust and glass and make no effort to get up again. The ruin and desolation will bury them as they die slowly of their wounds; away from light, life and love. There is no light when you're squeezing your eyes shut, or trapped under the rubble. Where is life when you expect and hope for every day to be your last? And there is no love when you selfishly close the lid of your own coffin, leaving those who cared for you behind to mourn. These are the hopeless people; without hope or care for anything, even themselves.

After all this, there are also those who fall to their knees, crying out to God, "Why, Lord? Why? How could all this happen?"As their wounds bleed and sprains swell, they listen quietly for that still, small voice, but when they are answered, they begin to tremble.

"For Love," it says in the silence, "All this for Love."

And with that, a decision is made, a switch is flipped, and the heart begins to beat again, palpitating with a furious rush. Some rise up from their knees, determined to fight back and lash out in anger and hatred, like the painful cord of a whip, hurting that the God who made them would let such pain hurt them. Some will prostrate themselves in the dust and glass, thinking pitifully, if this pain is love, then why should we live? What choice is there but to die?

But there is another kind of people. There are those that get up off their knees and bind their wounds, set their bones, and stop the bleeding. They push on through the broken world, covered in scars, but filled with hope. There they find light and life and love.  They see light as they look up to the heavens in silent, wide-eyed prayers. They find life as they tell their bodies to keep going, don't give up. And love has been found in the suffering; though they bleed and hurt they do it for love. These are the hopeful; with hope enough for all the world.

How can suffering be a lovely thing? How is all of this for Love? In our broken, sinful souls, we find longing for the love that only God can give us. We all desire to have love, and the Lord is Love in full. Thus, we long for the only true love, but sin has made it painful to overcome. We are trapped by pain, scars, and sin.

When trials come, they will either make or break us. If we are buried or overcome by such pain, we lash out away from the one thing we need most.  But if we turn to the Light of Life, Love will reach down and touch our burdened hearts, lifting off that painful scar of sin. But it will only work if we can muster our courage, strength, and humility to kneel before the Lord, offer up our stained and dirty clothes, and let Him clothe us in His love, unlock our chains, and lift us out of the mud.  Life may not be easier, but we know that we have found our light, life, and love.

"For Love," He says in the silence of our hearts, "All this sorrow, for you to find My Love."


Amy said...

What a beautiful reminder of God's love and grace.

Virginia Willock said...

This is an amazingly touching vision of God's gentle love--great writing!