Friday, November 25, 2016


"in Him and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence"
a few weeks ago ali recommended a group study of ephesians
and because i was too deep in 3 other books [not in the bible, lest you think that i'm trying to make myself sound so honorable]
at the time i didn't step in with the 3-4 that kept a steady dialogue going
but later, now
i remember walking those streets in early december exactly 10 years ago
2000-year-old columns and structures that tell only whispered stories of what the prosperous city used to be
but i remember hearing of the darkness that lived there, where the early church held on so faithfully to this new news of hope and purpose and messiah,
i remember the stadium that created space for gladiators and lions and all of the helpless victims
i remember talk of secret tunnels that led from library to brothel so the men of the city could indulge at whim without public knowledge
and i read here
that Christ came to create a new unified humanity out of the two volatile people groups
that He made it possible for mankind to approach God with freedom and confidence
until that moment of reconciling two humanities, of reconciling Creator with created
there was no access to such relationship
pain and suffering and death and confusion and loneliness landed heavily where they originated with no outlet for the burden and fear and distress
and it would have been fitting, appropriate, deserved
"like the rest, we were by nature deserving of great wrath. but because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ"
all of the mercy, the punishment entirely deserved but withheld, all of the grace
a good God, a kind and selfless outlet for all of the pain within which sinful humanity lives
He carries the hurt and confusion and fear and offers a burden that is light on the shoulders,
hopeful to the spirit
and joy-filled, evident in the eyes
His presence, immanence, companionship, and burden-carrying are the greatest gifts
thank you, Jesus, for making a way where there was no way and where burden was forever our lot in life