Friday, February 16, 2007

Jesus is Contrast not Comparison

"... Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame ..." Hebrews 12:2

Joy? Some places in the Bible words just leap off the page, grab your collar, and pull you down close. This is one of those places for me. I've always found this nugget fascinating - to call the excruciating pain, suffering, humiliation, and rejection of the cross ... JOY?

We try to compare the pain and the objective to be gained, but Jesus is really not about comparisons. He is about contrast. "In Him was light ..." - light and darkness are contrasts. The examples of His life and what He said are a contrast to what we think life is. Sin has so corrupted us. We settle for life on a level so far below what was intended that true life can only be seen as a contrast. You just can't compare yourself or anyone else to Jesus. He simply stands so far apart.

The love of the Father shown in Jesus makes the best love of man look like hate - contrast, not comparison. In Hebrews 12:2, the joy of fulfilling the Father's mission for Him made the very real pain so insignificant it could only be thought of in terms of contrast. He puts things in their right perspective. Jesus shows us the joy of doing the Father's will as a diamond reducing our sin-distorted fears to peanuts.

Begin to see in Jesus contrasts, not comparisons, and see what a difference it makes.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Little Hugs are Special

You may have to be a grandparent to really understand this.

Little Hugs are Special

Running into my arms
Eyes bright with love,
Little arms flung round
My neck squeezed tight.
Little hugs are special.

Soft cheek pressed to weathered face,
Sweet kisses and “I love you's"
All a little heart given
With nothing held back.
Child loving father loving child.

Love, out of proportion to any merit,
Unconditional, and pure.
Eternity to spend in this moment
Could not consume the joy.
Knowing here echoes of Truth.

“Don’t bother the Master with these.”
“He’s on important business here.”
But stopping, Jesus says, “Forbid them not,”
“Let the little ones come unto me.”

Running into His arms
Eyes bright with Love,
Little arms flung round
His neck squeezed tight.
Little hugs are special.

Soft cheek pressed to weathered face,
Sweet kisses and “I Love you's"
All a little Heart given
With nothing held back.
Son Loving Father Loving Son.

And the Father’s extravagant Love shown
In this most unlikely and simple thing.
Reminding us with each little hug and kiss,
“For such is the Kingdom of Heaven.”

Yes, little hugs are special.

c Harold Henderson, 2003
This work may be freely reproduced in unaltered form for non-commercial use.