February 8, 2013

Please Tell me About Jesus

A beautiful little boy sits by the side of the road, the picture of misery. The hollowness of his cheeks gives away the truth that he hasn't had enough food to eat for many days.

Suddenly his face lights up to see Jesus coming with a plate of food-- His own plate of food.

Thoughtless children snicker as a hunched, blind man stumbles over sticks that they have placed in his path. 

Then Jesus comes and slips a thoughtful hand under the trembling arm. The lines around sightless eyes soften as the face breaks into a beaming smile recognizing his Friend.

Weary disciples join their weary Master in a boat, escaping the press of the multitude. Eagerly anticipating a restful retreat, they near the shore only to find an even larger multitude waiting for them. Clamoring mothers, sick, needy, careless, all pressing for help, a kind word, and a tender smile.

Gentle Jesus thinks not of his own weary body or need of retreat, but His loving heart yearns with compassion, and He gives, gives and gives some more.

A weeping woman, crushed under the weight of her sin, finds a comforting friend who tells her, "I don't condemn you, go and I will enable you and empower you to sin no more. All my biddings are enablings you know.."

He loves the babies. Seeks out sick people, even those rightfully suffering the consequences of their own stupid choices, and joyfully gives them the gift of a brand new life. They feel the thrill of taking steps on legs that haven't walked in years.

He watches the sunset with people who are seeing it for the very first time in their lives. They laugh and cry together in the sheer joy and wonder of the miracle of sight.

Where He goes He leaves joy and laughter and happy hearts.

Yet many meet him with silent skepticism. Sneers. Suspicious frowns. Cold hearts holding themselves aloof-- wondering if this Man can really claim the power He says. 

Some make crude jokes. 

Others voice their questioning unbelief of His words. "What on earth did He mean, I am the bread of life? How stupid is that? Thinks He's yummy, huh?? I don't buy this about Him being the Messiah."

I cringe to even type the words.
Yet my heart breaks to know that I have voiced, lived, acted so much worse..

Thinking of my Jesus breaks every toughened callous on my heart. I see the selfish motives-- the attempts to save myself, my reputation, my health, my personal time, my image-- in stark, cold, ugliness when I see that He had not a single selfish impulse in all His being. He didn't try to protect and defend himself from the hurtful words, He just loved back with every fiber of His beautiful, breaking heart.

I see my attempts to "be good," to live holy, to keep a good front, to hide the selfishness of the heart under nice acts and words, for exactly what they are-- 

They are my way. My efforts. My righteousness. My filthy rags. My wretched sin.

I see myself slicing the throat of the Lamb of God and His clear, bright blood flowing down over the altar, the knife, over me...

Oh soul, what have you done?! You have murdered the One who loved you...

And yet even in His dying agonies He thinks no resentful thought, but to the last thinks only the best of me, "She doesn't know what she's doing... forgive her."

And with His stripes I am healed

Oh, please.. when you see this ever-wandering sheep go astray.. please tell me about Jesus..

4 comments:

  1. Beth, I don't know if any one has ever told you this, but God has really given you a way with words. They go straight to the heart. You take an old, over-rehearsed story and bring it back to life, giving it newer, richer meaning. Thanks for using your gift to bless me. ;)

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    1. You are a thoughtful girl, Rachel. Though I think sometimes people tell me too much..

      There are times I write thinking about the words and how I love them..

      There are other times, like this, when the sight of Jesus has me in soul-shaking sobs, and the words don't even come close to creating a picture of how beautiful He truly is..

      I only pray that anyone reading them would have seen Him too.

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  2. Oh, yes… I need that reminder daily… Thanks, Beth. :)

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  3. Wow. Pretty vivid picture. A face to face encounter with reality is what it takes though.
    Thanks for Sharing Grace.

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