JESUS was never intimidated by our nastiness. Even the presence of demons within us didn’t make him flinch. Our Lord knew full well the worst part of us. In fact, he took it, head on, full force and let it be nailed to the cross.
Jesus trusted in the power of his Father’s love. He crushed sin and removed the sting of death. He wrestled with it, down in the dirt, and our Messiah came out utterly victorious. So no, the nasty parts of us don’t surprise our Lord at all.
But Jesus was amazed by one thing: faith.
The faith of the Canaanite woman seeking help for her child. The faith of the centurion asking for his servant to be healed. When Jesus heard him, “he marveled,” the Scriptures say.
Their faith amazed our Lord. Think about that. Your faith can amaze God. But amazement can be scary. Maybe it scares you: to believe. To truly let go and let love rush into your heart. Maybe you think you don’t matter or you don’t deserve it. But God’s love doesn’t work that way. There’s no merit system.
His love simply is.
What might happen if you really begin to take God seriously?
What might happen if you really let yourself be loved?
What wonderful things might occur if you let him heal you and free you?
Your faith will amaze you too. And no matter your circumstance or struggle, you will carry your cross with courage. You will find new strength and clarity. You will rise, resurrected with Christ.
Your heart might be hesitating, asking, is this possible?
Can I be loved in such a pure, wholesome way?
Can I begin to love this way too?
Can this really happen to me?
You pause at the doorway of amazement.
It goes back to the nastiness, doesn’t it? You think you just can’t. It’s too bad or too late for you. Or things are too complicated. Life has beaten you down. You’ve lost hope.
But remember. Jesus nailed it all to the cross with him. At one point in human history, God’s Son died for you, me, for everyone.
So join him in nailing all that badness to the cross, once and for all. Let the hammer swing in a wide, swift arc and drive the nails home. Put the bondage of sin and despair to death.
And let God’s sweet mercy fall like soft rain upon you.
Be cleansed and be whole. Step into freedom.
Be amazed by your faith. You are restored, shiny and new. A smile breaks out on your face. Tears of joy roll down your cheeks. Others will see you too. They will be amazed when they see you.
What’s happened? Why are you so happy?
Even if your life is still a bit of a mess, you will tell them.
You will share.
And they will be inspired to find their faith. And many will find the Lord along their way.
And the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit will look down from heaven and say together,
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