I am the worst of sinners.
I look upon the agony of Jesus, nailed to a cross, blinded by sweat and swollen tissue, pain shooting through every nerve of his back as he felt the rough wood contact the open festering wounds. There was no Band-Aid for this moment, only raw pain. What pain hurt him most?
Perhaps it was His depth of love for a creation lost. Taunts, jeers, tears and torment filled his day, but He stayed there because He was one in nature with the Father. He chose to go on, to do this hard thing. I can only wonder at such love, and crave to have it. Yet when I do, I know how far from it I am, how remote my understanding of love and sacrifice is. I take the easy way out. I limit myself to what I can feel comfortable with. What kind of comfort zone was the cross!?
Oh how wretched, poor, blind and naked I am in the midst of my gracious surroundings. I see His eyes looking at me with longing and I realize the depth of my sin. Love like this is not normal, yet He asks me to love like Him.
On my knees, on my face, I feel the conviction, the painful knowledge of how far short I will fall of this example. I see the kindness of a Savior who disregarded my cold heart to reach out to me, to break the barriers of what love toward me could look like. I struggle to understand, but know how short I fall. I am supposed to look like Him? …Oh Lord, I am dust compared to royalty. What do I do with this scandalous grace, this heart of love that is mine to inherit. I let myself further absorb the moment of conviction and find transforming humility cloaking me like a garment.
There is so much more love to extend. Miles more grace to walk in. People to embrace that I have passed by and hope to release where no one has noticed. Hanging there, bloody and oxygen-starved, writing in pain from the exposure of raw nerve endings rubbing spikes in his hands and feet, Jesus noticed me.
As I kneel before him in my spirit, I hear, “Forgive them. They know not what they do.”