I love my grandsons and keep them close to my heart. Just as I love my husband, and children, their spouses and all my extended family and friends. As a child I dearly loved my parents in spite of their flaws, as I hope my children love me. But the kind of love Christ offers through the cross is a kind of love no one else can give. I can fill my home with lovely sayings, adorn my walls with pictures of Bible stories, much as I do pictures of what I love, and always keep him front and center of my thoughts by referencing his word. These are all things I do for my children and grandchildren. I have never been a big picture hanger. Just ask my bewildered children. But I do love albums of rememberence. I still have some of Dakota's messages to me hanging about the house. And as Ryder grows, I hang his little hand prints beside Dakotas, his watercolor scribbles on the fridge and there will be a box of things I will save, just as with Dakota. I update all the family phone numbers. All of these bring memories of days when we laughed and loved and shared wonderful times. I have what was my hope chest full of my children's childhood memories. Yet all of these things are simply a head knowlege that our love is real. I feel it in my heart and I can even empathize with their pain. I can pray fervently for them. And in our most intimate moments of sharing the scary things in life, wanting to love their pain away will never come close to the love that Jesus gave and gives.
The major reason is that Jesus didn't offer fuzzy warm feelings. He offered himself. And then he gave me his Spirit to not only make sweet memories of him, or mentally challenge me to love him in return. HE GAVE HIMSELF SO THAT HIS SPIRIT COULD INDWELL ME. His love was an action to become one with me. A union of myself and God. Dare I say so. Yes! I dare. A HOLY UNION. That cannot happen with any other kind of love. There is a type of it enacted in the marriage union. But it is a type only, because even the best marriage is unable to unite two spirits in more than a figurative sense. The strongest love between any two beings is never as strong as the one that God gives on a genuinely spiritual level. A dimension that we enter only by his power and because of the cross. It is one area that science cannot peirce on any level.
The actual union of the spirit with Mary, Christ's mother, that produced the Christ child by miracle, is a picture type of what Jesus was born to be for us. A means by which we might all be one with God.
...the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. John 14:17
I fear that many individuals who reject Christ, have never understood the level to which God elevates us, by crossing the gap between God's dimension and the human dimensions of body, soul, and mind. We sometimes don't give God enough Glory for being willing to come literally into our hearts, into our being and unite with our spiritual soul that never dies. When I asked Christ to take my sins and sinful nature and deal with it according to his own directives, I also asked him to "come into my heart." In the years since, I have discovered what that oneness provides. In so many ways he became everything I need to survive in this world and in HIS. When I say I hear his still small voice, I am not a quackazoid crazy case hearing voices. I am only recognizing his whisper of love from within.
He never sleeps, never gives up, never leaves or forsakes, never lets his anger bring us harm, never lacks the power and wisdom to resolve our issues. He is never far away, instead is as close as our heart beat and then some. He IS and always will be one with our soul if we just ask him.
I am so glad the cross is not just a cause to feel sad and mushy because someone died for me. It is a cause for rejoicing, because he overcame even death because of his resurrection. Yet God told us not to focus on the Death part of it, but on the LIFE part of it. So as Easter rolls around each year, I make an extra effort to go beyond just being thankful for my salvation, and the power of the cross over sin (which is a very big deal,) and try to remember why he did it. Partnership with God.
I have looked in the mirror several times lately, and imagined that I could look into my soul. And beyond that to the spiritual part of me that is a part of infinite time, and see my partner there. I speak to HIM and thank HIM, for being one with me on the journey. I focus on the fact that He is not OUT THERE, but in here, IN ME.
I praise you for knowing, dear Jesus, what my greatest need would be. For wanting me to be one with your Spirit, united in more than emotion, but a kind of love that endures beyond emotion, and memory. When my body fails, there will still be US. You and I can walk through the door into the vast realm of glory. But until then, I praise you for the new life on earth that your death and resurrection gives. The gifts that pass understanding and the miracle of being one with you. In your precious name, and for your Glory, AMEN