Archives For mercy

Working on my reflection

September 21, 2012 — 1 Comment

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I love Jesus. I’m quite the fan.

But frankly, I really struggle to be like him.

I know it’s because as a fallen human, I am not perfect, and so can’t ever be completely like Jesus. The thing is, I want to be more like him, but I find it really difficult.

I find it hard to love those who annoy me. There are plenty of people with whom I don’t see eye to eye, and I struggle to treat them as Jesus would have. He’d have loved them, given them time and shown grace to them. All things I probably don’t.

If I’m honest, I find it hard to love the poor and the lost as Jesus would have done. Yes, I give money to charities which support them and provide hope. But whilst money and support is vital in helping these people, Jesus never gave anyone cash. He gave them his presence and his love.

***

I wonder what would happen to those around me if I was more like Jesus. More compassionate, gracious and loving. I don’t wonder that from a self-centred, “wouldn’t it be brilliant if more people looked at me and thought I was amazing” perspective.

I wonder it from an honest place of longing to be more like Jesus. Despite all the wonderful programs, five-year goals and objectives our churches put in place, these aren’t going to transform the lives of those around us.

Only meeting Jesus is going to do that.

We are the representatives of Jesus for so many of those in our lives. In my life, I know there are some people whose only contact with the church is me. So how I act matters. How well I reflect God’s love matters.

***

I wish it was easier, but it isn’t. Being like Jesus can be hard, because it flies in the face of what the world defines as successful.

But the impact it can have on people is beyond anything this world can offer.

For all the struggles we may have with it, the difference our reflection of God can have in the lives of those around us echoes into eternity.

I think it’s time I worked on my reflection.

I wonder…

August 30, 2012 — Leave a comment

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I wonder…

I wonder what God thinks when all I do is come to him with a list of things I want, rather than simply sitting and listening.
I wonder what he thinks every time I fail to do something according to his word, or his will for my life.
I wonder what he thinks of church.
I wonder what he thinks of what I do at church.

I wonder what the Trinity thinks when it looks at its creation killing each other.
I wonder what Jesus thought as he looked out from the cross.
I wonder what the thief on the cross next to him thought when Jesus said, “You will be with me in paradise”.
I wonder what God the Father felt the moment Jesus breathed his last human breath.

I wonder if I’ll ever truly grasp the love of God.
I wonder if sometimes I should stop trying to understand and question God’s love and just live in it.
I wonder what those who don’t know Jesus see when they see me.
I wonder if I’ll fulfil all my dreams.

I wonder.

***

“Your plans are still to prosper, You have not forgotten us, You’re with us in the fire and the flood. Faithful forever, perfect in love, You are sovereign over us.” Aaron Keyes.

The approaching storm

August 28, 2012 — Leave a comment

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I sit and watch the storm approaching. Dark clouds drawing in, curtains blocking out the light. The wind picks up, blowing leaves around like helpless bits of rubbish caught up in something bigger than themselves.

The rain begins to fall, quietly and sporadically at first, then violently and without mercy. Plants bow at the power of the raindrops, which shatter on the ground, creating individual explosions.

The world has gone from a moment of calm to a moment of supreme chaos in a matter of minutes. The rain and wind attack the windows of houses, desperate to get in. Inside those houses sit people, all watching the storm, hoping the rain and wind stay out.

***

In the middle of the storm, it is calm. A glimpse of peace amid a raging inferno. A moment of speechlessness, as the storm rages around but not within. The trees take respite, weary branches resting in a momentary relief.

Silence. Calm.

***

I can’t stop thinking about storms at the moment. I can’t stop wondering why God leads us into them. Questioning why. It’s part of the journey, I know. But not a part I necessarily enjoy.

Nothing comes out of the storm unchanged in some way. Physically, mentally, emotionally – the storm changes us. As he guides us through the storm, God changes us.

***

“Out of defeat can come the best in human nature. As Christians face storms of adversity, they may rise with more beauty. They are like trees that grow on mountain ridges — battered by winds, yet trees in which we find the strongest wood.” Billy Graham.