Have you ever gone someplace and come back with an impression of the experience etched into your psyche, seated into your memory banks?

You vividly remember the smell, the feel, maybe the pain or the pleasure of the experience. As time goes by, reminiscing about it means re-experiencing that impression as if it was actually happening again.

Every now and then, I believe I get a glimpse of the life and times of my lord and savior Jesus Christ as he walked among us.

Most times this happens as I am reading scripture or listening to a dynamic sermon.

When it happens, I tend to think in terms of His religious indignation. It is so vivid to me that I sometimes feel that way also.

Through it all, scripture lets us see in Christ’s own words, His incredulousness at the prospect of the apostles not embracing the concept of unconditional love.

To Him, it was so simple a message that you could almost hear him sigh in frustration that they (we) just didn’t get it.

What is so difficult about the notion that God, the Father, so loves you that he sent His only son to die in order to save you?

To Christ, what was so difficult to understand about a love so strong that no matter what you do, what secrets you keep, what thoughts you harbor, what misdeeds you perpetrate, that love will only endure and, grow stronger and more encompassing?

For someone who was sent to die for the salvation of mankind, the prospect of ignorance on this subject must have been just a tad disheartening. Scripture lets us experience some of this as we come to grips with the fact that this sacrifice was, yes, made for us also.

Can you imagine somebody, anybody, loving you enough to condemn their most prized and honored offspring to the vilest kind of death possible?

I guess what I’m getting at is if you could talk to, recognize, appreciate the reality of this kind of love, how would you treat it? Could you really handle it? Most of us, if we’re honest with ourselves, can’t comprehend this from our fellow man.

Original sin has something to do with it. To us love begets fear in the natural sense; fear of betrayal, fear of loss.

Life in a sense can brainwash you into believing no one can really love you unconditionally if they knew of all your flaws and faults. It just doesn’t seem natural to us. Love to us always comes with strings attached.

On a supernatural level, the one in which we were created, we were made in the image of God and believe it or not, therefore, worthy of universal unconditional love; the kind reserved for the Almighty and given to us by Him.

That is who we honor and who resides in us in the form of the Holy Spirit, capable of giving and receiving this blessing of grace.

Christ must have been a basket case at the notion that man simply couldn’t understand the truth of love being the answer to the human experience.

Biblical reference after biblical reference confirms this message over and over again. (John 3:16) says “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”

Kind of awesome, I know. I had to get used to the idea myself. It’s love stupid.

May God bless and keep you forever.

(Photo: James A. Washington)

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