Wednesday, May 21, 2014

May 21st

Jesus looked grave, tired in the inner place. When He smiled, it was tender and soft, but the sadness never fully left His eyes.

“Are you worn out?" I asked, to make sure I was seeing correctly.

Sometimes I get frustrated by the ambiguities of seeing by faith and how quietly and carefully I must listen, and how completely I must surrender myself to Him in trust, but part of being in this life and learning to hear and to see by faith is learning, above all, to trust Jesus no matter what and after that and within that context of trust, to listen for His quiet voice.

And then I felt the throbbing, heavy pain in Jesus’ chest; He actually looked away, caught up in it- and Jesus was angry! It was the first time I ever knew Jesus to be angry like that- it's not a human anger.

His wrath is His furious, eternally burning love- passionate, zealous love- and His intent to bring to fulfillment His perfect and loving purpose for His children and His creation, which He loves with an everlasting love. It's a kind of long lasting, slow burning fire against injustice and pillage and destruction of what is pure and innocent and beautiful. Anyway, that is how I have come to understand it so far.

I could feel His anguish and grief and I could see it in His face and how it hurt Jesus that this was going on, and how much He burned within Himself, to make it right.

Instinctively I knew that whatever was on His heart- the part of it that I was privy to- had to do with things similar to those that I had suffered, and suddenly, brilliantly, I knew what to say to Jesus.

I threw my arms around His shoulders and insisted- “But look what You did with me, Jesus, look what You did with me.”

I meant, how He had taken all the darkness that had been written right into my physical and emotional self, and transformed it into something so brilliant, vibrant, trusting. This work isn't even completely finished and already I can see how amazing it will be when it is.

There is nothing that dark can do, Jesus told me once, that He cannot transform in this way- into greater glory, but not a static, hard brilliance, but a kind of living, organic glory that moves and bends and creates and invites.

When I reminded Jesus of His work in me, love and relief burst through Him, breaking right through the anguish. He turned and caught me up fiercely in His arms and He declared, with such intensity- This is why you are here with Me.

It's not that Jesus doesn't have faith- He has perfect faith, but He wants us to have faith in and with Him. When we cry out to Him for restorative justice like the persistent widow of His parable, we know that how much more so, He will move when we ask Him.

How much more so, because we know that Jesus is a just, compassionate Judge who is in fact suffering with us and who will bring healing and peace to His beloved creation. We believe that He can, that He has, and that He will.

I do not see the throne room- I don’t see Jesus the way I expected to see Him- formal, composed, gracious, majestic- not because Jesus isn’t those things- He is all those things. There are those sides of Him and Jesus, the Lord of lords, can be majestic- beautiful and terrifying on the throne at the right hand of Abba, and Jesus can be formal and gracious in a tender, patient and merciful way, as a King to His subjects.

But I don’t normally see Jesus this way, because I do not know Him in His formal spaces. I know Him in His chambers, in the inner rooms while He waits and suffers, because so long as we are suffering, He is suffering with us, until that day.


I stood on the back porch and looked up at the sky and the woods. Jesus was standing beside me, wrapping me in His arms, and He pointed out how the pines, though they were majestic, where also broken.

That is also Myself, He whispered. Do You love Me, torn, gnarled and scarred?

Now we have the opportunity to love Jesus in His apparent absence and weakness. Now Jesus is appearing to us as diseased, imprisoned, a stranger without shelter, naked, hungry and thirsty. This is the time that we can invest everything we have in faith, love and hope, in the mystery and dark of this present life, in the face of its suffering and lack.

When He comes again, and when we meet Him face to face- how can we help loving Jesus then? We will see Him as He is. We won't love Him then through faith, but by sight. We will understand the whole picture.

But to love Jesus now, to trust Him now and to work with Him and for Him, even in the dark, without fully understanding, that is something so precious to Him- the faith and love that we give Him now will never pass away. It will be precious to Him forever; we are His inheritance and He is ours.